Whitney Defends Big Government

CHICAGO (AP) -- The Green Party candidate for Illinois governor doesn't make any apologies for believing in big government.

Rich Whitney says Illinois has been moving toward smaller government and the result is dangerously overcrowded prisons, less care for the mentally ill and higher college tuition.

In an interview Monday with The Associated Press, Whitney argued Illinois should overhaul its tax system to pay for much-needed government services.

The Green candidate wants to raise the income tax rate by two points, to 5 percent. He would use some of the new money to lower property taxes.

He's also calling for a new tax on financial transactions and fees on pollution.

Whitney says those changes plus cuts in government waste would eliminate the state's $13 billion deficit.

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