SPRINGFIELD — Some Illinois lawmakers received a letter threatening violence against them if changes aren’t made to state pensions.
The letter, first reported by the Capitol Fax newsletter, is titled “Dead People Can’t Collect Fat State Pensions” and is addressed to state officials, public employee union leaders and state employees and “Bondholders in the United States.”
“You may think you can extract more money from us. We would advise you to think again,” states the letter that was sent from Champaign.
It goes on to say the pension protection clause of the state Constitution should be removed before a graduated state income tax is enacted. It also says state funded pensions should be capped and reduced.
“Don’t bother about new gun laws: from arson to strangulation, there are many other effective means available,” the letter states. “Are you sure that recent accidental deaths on the highways or train platforms really are accidents — or the conscious decisions of people with nothing left to lose to 'take one with me?'"
The lengthy letter concludes with “If the state soaks the taxpayers again, there will be a surprise ending, a final payment. Repeal or requiem. Last chance or last rites. Choose wisely.”
The letter has been turned over to Illinois State Police. Secretary of State Police increased manpower and patrol activity for the Capitol Complex, said Elizabeth Kaufman, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State Jesse White, whose office is in charge of Capitol security.
The exact number of lawmakers who received the letter is unclear. Senate Democrats said they are aware of one member getting it. Senate Republicans said at least four members got it. Several House Republicans received it, said spokesman Eleni Demertzis.
“Several of our members have received the letter, including Leader (Jim) Durkin,” she said. “We receive or are subject to numerous letters of a threatening nature. Unfortunately, it seems the rhetoric and intensity of these letter campaigns has increased in recent weeks.”
She said those letters are compiled and turned over to law enforcement.
Doug Finke: firstname.lastname@example.org, 217-788-1527, @dougfinkesjr
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