Flash Mob, Dancing to Electric Slide, Demands Electricity Giants Exelon, ComEd Stop Dodging Corporate Taxes
On Monday, August 22, Moral Mondays Illinois activists, including over 75 ONE Northside leaders, staged a flash mob, dancing to our own rendition of The Electric Slide at noon at 10 S. Dearborn, just outside Exelon’s Chicago offices. Activists demanded that ComEd and Exelon stop dodging state taxes and that Gov. Rauner, House Speaker Madigan and Senate President Cullerton support proposed legislation to close $2.5 billion in corporate tax loopholes in order to increase investment in public education, social services, green energy and other dire infrastructure projects.
A recent report by Institute for Policy Studies showed multiple corporate tax loopholes allowed ComEd, a corporation with pre-tax profits of more than $706 million in 2015, to dodge $47.7 million in corporate income taxes to the State of Illinois. Additionally, Exelon, whose pre-tax profits were $3.3 billion in 2015, paid -$86 million in state taxes in the five states in which it operates, meaning they received more in state tax credits than they paid in taxes. If they’d paid the full rates, they would’ve paid a total of $377 million in state taxes.
“It is ludicrous that our legislators are playing political games with our lives. They allow services like mental health centers, which I depend on to remain stable, to dwindle, while they allow big corporations like Exelon and ComEd off the hook of paying their fair share. This is a revenue crisis, not a spending crisis. They need to close corporate tax loopholes right now and pass a budget that puts people and the planet first,” said Sam Wickham with ONE Northside and Fair Economy Illinois.
The People and Planet First Budget raises an additional $23.5 billion per year in revenue by:
- Closing Corporate Tax Loopholes ($2.5 billion)
- Enacting a Graduated Income Tax ($9 billion)
- Passing the LaSalle Street Tax ($12 billion)
The People and Planet First Budget invests this additional $23.5 billion annually to:
- Fully fund pre-K through 12 education ($5 billion per year)
- Provide universal healthcare ($4.5 billion per year)
- Convert to all green energy over the next 30 years ($3.5 billion per year)
- Fully fund human services ($3 billion per year)
- Repair our infrastructure ($3 billion per year)
- Provide free higher education at Illinois’ community colleges and state universities ($2.5 billion per year)
- Increase pension investment ($2 billion per year)
Since May 2015, Moral Mondays Illinois activists have engaged in civil disobedience to demand state elected officials close corporate tax loopholes, pass the LaSalle Street Tax and implement a progressive income tax. Past Moral Mondays Illinois demonstrations have shut down access to the Chicago Board of Trade and the building housing Citadel, the hedge fund run by billionaire and Rauner’s largest political donor Ken Griffin.
Moral Mondays Illinois actions are organized by Fair Economy Illinois, a statewide alliance that organizes urban, suburban and rural residents around issues that affect the common good. ONE Northside is a founding member of Fair Economy Illinois. Visit Moral Mondays Illinois on Facebook and search #MoralMondaysIL on Twitter for more information.