Illinois lawmakers and the governor have spent the past several days ratcheting up their calls for compromise to end the budget impasse.
On the second day of the General Assembly's special session, Senator Heather Steans, of Chicago, says Democrats have compromised with Republicans on items such as pension reform. Now, she says, it is time for Republicans to act cooperatively on what is left to reach a budget deal.
“We believe what needs to happen is that negotiations need to take place in the House," she says.
The state standoff has prevented a full budget for nearly two years. Another Democrat, Senator Toi Hutchinson, of Olympia Fields, agrees the hardest part of a budget is voting to raise taxes. But she says a deal is needed before the state's credit reaches junk status.
“Compromise means that everyone is not going to get everything they want. We have to do this together," Hutchinson says.
The Governor and Republicans rolled out a plan for a budget, a property tax freeze and other changes last week. They say that Democrats should accept it as a compromise. The Governor has called special sessions for the General Assembly each day through the end of the month.