Op-ed From Rep. Mazzochi: Political Insiders Remain out of Touch

A government operating on the principle of by the people, for the people, means we are citizens, not subjects.  Government exists by our consent, following due process of law.  It is supposed to deliver quality of life fundamentals: safe streets; good schools; jobs and opportunity.  

In Illinois we see partisan political Democrats, from the Governor on down, repeatedly ignore this approach, to predictably bad results.  This past decade, Illinois was 1 of only 3 states losing population.  We are experiencing runaway inflation.  Food, utility and fuel prices are way up.  We also see another kind of inflation in crime.  We worry our local schools have put politics ahead of education, failing to meet the needs of our students.  

When the Democrat legislature reconvened last month, did they focus on your priorities?  No. 

Springfield Democrats governed for their own best interests, not yours. 

Rather than fair elections and maps, we got more Democrat gerrymandering to protect political insiders’ privilege and power.   

Instead of protecting the integrity of our existing election systems, they filed bills to give convicted criminals the right to vote in prison, a violation of the Illinois Constitution.

And don’t expect help for the skyrocketing winter home-heating bills starting to arrive in mailboxes.  The true cost of the Democrats “green” policies are going to hit lower income families, fixed-income seniors, and working class households the hardest.  

Democrats won’t touch Governor Pritkzer’s failures at the state veteran’s facilities—where shoddy practices led to an explosive COVID-19 outbreak that killed over 30 veterans in the LaSalle facility.  Even though an Inspector General finding in April 2021 showed that a contributing factor to this disaster was the Governor’s failure to fill a key medical supervisor role, Pritzker still hasn’t filled the position over a year after these preventable deaths took place. 

As for COVID, where other states are actually following the science, and being flexible based on local conditions, Governor Pritzker keeps his statewide emergency rules and constraints in place, irrespective of whether you already had COVID, got vaccinated, or possess natural immunity; and whether you are work at home alone, or in an at-risk congregate care facility; whether you are a public school or private.  His rules are for everyone, regardless of science or context, unless you are in a state government union—since Pritzker needs those votes.

The Democratic legislature has done nothing to restore the health care rights that Governor Pritzker took from you; instead, they voted to strengthen his unaccountable power, stripping your rights of conscience to object to medical treatment and procedures if it involves COVID-19. 

On abortion, Democrats have gone from safe, legal, and rare; to stripping parents of their right to be notified that their underage daughter is having one. That proved sufficiently extreme that even some Democrats refused to vote for it.  

Thus, it is no wonder that ordinary people feel more out of balance and out of touch with their government, and that the institutions they count on are failing.   

After Mike Madigan’s ouster, Democrats promised the days of self-dealing, corruption and incompetence would end. Sadly, with one-party Democratic rule, Springfield politics continues to be one where the only ones who count are the insiders—not you.  

Deanne Mazzochi

State Representative, 47th District