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Lamont J. Robinson Jr.

Democratic candidate for Illinois House (5th district)

Lamont J. Robinson Jr.

Lamont J. Robinson Jr.

Democratic candidate for Illinois House (5th district)

BA in Business Administration from Clark Atlanta University MBA from National Louis University
Small Business Owner / Proprietor of two Allstate Insurance Agencies, one in Bronzeville and the other Humboldt Park and Adjunct Professor for the City Colleges of Chicago (Harold Washington, Olive Harvey, and Richard M. Daley College)
Past Political/Civic Experience

Responses to our questions

Why do you think it has been so difficult for Springfield to get a balanced budget passed and signed?

We have a Republican Governor that is holding the budget hostage in order to advance his agenda.

Do you believe the state budget can be balanced going forward without new sources of revenue?

Yes, but not without making draconian cuts that would be damaging to Illinois. I will detail how I would address the budget in the next questions.

What new sources, if any, would you support? Please be specific.

Progressive income tax Financial Transaction tax Gaming Recreational use of Marijuana

Do you support a constitutional amendment favoring a graduated income tax? Please explain.

Yes, because everyone should pay an equitable share.

Please list five areas where you would cut spending.

  • Eliminate business tax loopholes and giveaways
  • Cut Public funding for charter schools
  • Cut funding for prison expansion
  • Cut the number of local government units
  • Eliminate administrative waste

Since the Illinois Supreme Court's 2015 decision tossing bipartisan pension reform, what can and should the legislature do to control pension costs, if anything?

We need to raise the revenues to keep the promises that have been made to current pension holders. As the government brings in new employees they should be put under a defined contribution plan.

Should all new state workers be moved into defined contribution plans?


What should the governor do to control pension costs during union contract talks? What would you do?

The governor can limit overtime and work to negotiate efficiently so exorbitant attorneys' fees are limited as well.

Illinois lost more residents than any other state in 2016 and the trend appears to be holding for 2017. What is the No. 1 reason, in your opinion, for the exodus?

Economic opportunity, specifically the lack of jobs that pay a living wage.

What should Illinois do — via tax policy, spending or other policy means — to keep residents from leaving?

Make property taxes equitable, pass a balanced budget, pass a progressive income tax, stop regressive taxation, invest in quality public education, recreation, and neighborhood development. Lastly, we should we should work with local legislators across the state to create equitable property tax reform.

What should Illinois do to promote job creation?

Invest in existing small business and start ups. We should invest in a 21st century workforce development plan — schools currently are not responsive to needs of manufacturing centers, and educators need to invest in world-class education while listening to the industrial sector.

Did you support the education funding reform bill that the governor signed in 2017?

Though I am glad to see the additional funds for CPS that the bill allotted, this bill does not repair the flawed funding formula that currently exists and the injection of funds is insufficient. Also, the voucher system that it allows is a slap in the face to the Chicago Teacher's Union and actually works counter to all efforts to reform CPS and improve public education.

What, if anything, should the legislature do to help Chicago Public Schools?

CPS needs to be funded adequately. We receive some of the lowest per student allotments and many of our students are in need of additional resources to thrive. We need equitable programs and services for special education students. Additionally, funding early childhood development programs and pre-schools will help children to arrive in CPS with the skills they need to be successful. Lastly, after-school, library and park district programs will further enrich a student's ability to achieve, and that funding needs to be examined closely.

Do you support opportunity scholarships included in the funding reform bill? Or will you try, if elected, to eliminate that program?

This is a voucher system and should hardly be looked at as a "scholarship." These tax credits are a system established to rapidly erode enrollment in CPS. We must focus on improving our neighborhood schools and their ability to teach our children effectively.

Should Illinois do more to regulate campaign fundraising? If so, what?

I am in favor of public financing for campaign fundraising. If the current trends continue, people who do not have millions of dollars at their disposal will be locked out of the process.

What help, if any, are you receiving from your party and its leaders, including staff help, advice, legal assistance, money and resources? Be specific.

I am endorsed by: Congressman Danny Davis, Cook County Commissioners: President Toni Preckwinkle, Bridget Gainer, Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, and Larry Rogers, State Senator Kwame Raoul, State Representatives: Sarah Feigenholtz, Will Davis and Art Turner, Aldermen: Pat Dowell, Michelle Harris, Tom Tunney, Brian Hopkins and Committeeman Tim Egan.

If you are an incumbent, give an example of a time you worked across the aisle on an important issue.


If you are an incumbent, give at least one example of a time you did not vote with your party on a significant issue.


Do you support term limits? If so, will you commit to sponsoring legislation and/or lobbying your colleagues on behalf of a constitutional change?

Voters should decide their representation, but we should lean towards limiting decades-long legacies from developing. I think 20 years is plenty of time to perfect your craft and really make improvements in your districts. I will commit to sponsoring legislation to that end.

Do you support changes to the redistricting process? If so, will you commit to sponsoring legislation and/or lobbying your colleagues on behalf of a constitutional change?

Yes, I will sponsor and/or support legislation that minimizes the opportunity for gerrymandering.

Tell us a little about your family.

My mother is a retired public school teacher and union delegate, and my deceased father was a city of Chicago building inspector. My partner and I have been together for 8 wonderful years and we have 3 rambunctious dogs: Venus, Blake and Bailey.

Tell us something about you that might surprise us.

My grandparents owned a farm and though I am 100% a city kid, I spent every summer during my childhood feeding pigs and milking cows.

Candidates for Illinois House (5th district)