Jason Plummer said Illinois' mass exodus is fueled more by maintaining political power than by making difficult, long-term policy decisions that would keep and attract people to Illinois.
The former lieutenant governor candidate now seeking a seat in the 54th Senate District since Sen. Kyle McCarter (R-Lebanon) announced he will not seek re-election, told the Metro East Sun the state has failed to provide an economic environment that offers growth and opportunity, instead it has implemented fiscal and regulatory policies that drive up taxes, kill quality jobs and send potential employers to neighboring states.
"In the category of business friendliness, a ranking by CNBC this year gave Illinois 47th place among the 50 states," Plummer said. "Illinois has great, hardworking people, abundant resources and wonderful assets. We should be an economic leader, but failed leadership and poor public policy over many years is destroying our great state.
The Edwardsville Republican said the people of Illinois want to stay by their families and in their communities, but are now slowly being priced out of their homes because of absurdly high property taxes.
"They watch as businesses, unable to compete, shut down and move to neighboring states," Plummer said, adding when quality jobs exit towns it is replaced by an inflow of drugs, crime and social decay. "Young people and families starting out who want to stay in Illinois are forced to seek opportunity elsewhere, where there is not a punitive tax and regulatory climate that discourages work and investment."
If elected, the GOP business man and Navy Reserves intelligence officer said he would help Illinois out of the perilous position it is in. "I have spent my career creating quality jobs in southern Illinois and I know what it takes to attract business and growth to our state," Plummer said.
Advancing legislation that will cap and reduce the property taxes, reverse income tax increases, reform workers' compensation and tort laws and reduce spending is how he will do it, he said.
"I will also be focused on working directly with state agencies to make needed changes to the regulatory system and coordinating with local units of government within the district to address their needs from the state," Plummer said.
Fairness and stability must occur to keep residents in the state, he said.
"This situation is not going to change overnight, but if we could roll back the massive new tax hike and reduce and cap out of control property taxes, families would have an easier time with their budget," Plummer said. "If we could fight lawsuit abuse and reform our broken workers' compensation system, we could better compete with our neighbors."
Transparency is also key to keeping Illinoisans home, he said..
"Currently, House Speaker (Mike) Madigan (D-Chicago) and Senate President (John) Cullerton (D-Chicago), and a select few others ultimately determine what the state's budget will look like in meetings where they are unaccountable to any public scrutiny," Plummer said. "The General Assembly does not follow the Open Meetings Act, does not respond to Freedom of Information requests, and stages elaborate ploys to avoid accountability from the people."
"I'm humbled to receive this endorsement and have tremendous respect for the work of A.B.A.T.E. and its members. I've been a member of A.B.A.T.E. for several years because they are an organization that stands up for individual liberty and limited government and I strongly support their advocacy", Plummer said. "We don't need heavy handed government telling people how to live their lives and I will work alongside A.B.A.T.E. to ensure that personal freedom and responsibility are promoted in Springfield."
Mike Fisher, Chairman of ABATE PAC, says that Plummer is a candidate who will defend the rights of all citizens. "Our organization supports candidates who are committed to protecting our rights and Jason Plummer understands that when Illinois legislators pass laws that take away our freedoms, everyone suffers."
Mick Eddington, a Regional Coordinator of A.B.A.T.E., supports the group's decision to endorse Plummer. "We need fresh ideas and solutions in Springfield, which is what Jason Plummer brings to the table" Eddington said.
The full endorsement letter can be viewed here: http://bit.ly/2mtwsge
Springfield, IL – Jason Plummer, who is running to fill an open senate seat in Illinois’ 54th District, was among the candidates who submitted their petition at the State Board of Elections in Springfield early Monday morning. Plummer, along with dozens of circulators, collected over 2500 signatures from across the district to secure his place on the ballot.
“I sincerely want to thank every person who signed or circulated my petition. Voters will have an important choice to make on March 20th and I will be working very hard over the coming months to earn the confidence of every voter,” Plummer stated.
Plummer announced his candidacy in October and has stressed the importance of creating quality jobs, confronting the opioid crisis, and being an effective, conservative voice for Southern Illinois.
“I don’t take being a candidate for office lightly. There are serious issues that this district and the state cannot afford to ignore. We have to create quality jobs. We have to support law enforcement and get drugs out of our communities. We have to elect candidates who will uphold the values of the people of Southern Illinois. I deeply look forward to speaking with every voter in this district and working to earn their support. My commitment is to be a strong leader for them in Springfield.”
Jason Plummer is Vice President at R.P. Lumber as well as an intelligence officer in the Navy Reserves. He is a member of the First Baptist Church of Maryville, serves on the board of Carmi Baptist Children’s Home, and is very active in several other civic, business, and charitable organizations. In 2010, Plummer was the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor, fighting for conservative principles on the ticket with Bill Brady. He and his wife Shannon live in Edwardsville.
Greenville, IL – Bond County Sheriff Jeff Brown has signed on to serve as chairman of Jason Plummer’s campaign for state senate in the 54th district. Plummer, who announced his candidacy last month, praises Sheriff Brown and says law enforcement will be an integral part of the campaign.
“Rural Illinois has been hit hard by the opioid epidemic and related crime. I am honored that Sheriff Brown and other law enforcement officials are joining with me to develop policies that can confront these problems head on. I am a big believer in surrounding yourself with the best people and Sheriff Brown’s leadership and expertise are highly respected in the law enforcement community. I will rely heavily on his knowledge of the issues going forward.”
Plummer, an intelligence officer in the Navy Reserves and Vice President of R.P. Lumber, has made fighting crime and the spread of opioid addiction a central message of his senate campaign. Last year alone 1,889 people died from opioid overdoses in Illinois and on October 26th, President Trump declared the opioid epidemic a national health emergency.
“This is obviously a very complex and difficult issue,” Sheriff Brown stated when asked about the rise in opioid use. “The economy plays an important role, and the relationship between joblessness and addiction is strong. What I want to see from elected officials is a plan to create quality jobs and a willingness to partner with local law enforcement agencies to coordinate a regional approach to reducing opioid dependency, educating young people, and stemming the flow of drugs into our neighborhoods. Jason is a job creator, served his country, and is strongly committed to these goals and that’s why I support his candidacy for state senate.”
Jeff Brown has served as Sheriff of Bond County since 1994 and is a veteran of the Illinois army National Guard and Air Force Reserves, where he served as a special agent providing protective services for military leaders and other dignitaries. Sheriff Brown resides in Greenville.
 The Editorial Board, “Illinois vs. the opioid epidemic,” The Chicago Tribune, September 11, 2017, Opinion.
Troy, IL – Local businessman and Vice President of R.P. Lumber Jason Plummer is officially announcing his candidacy today for the Illinois State Senate. He is running to fill an open seat in the 54th District.
Plummer’s campaign will focus on providing the people of Southern Illinois access to quality jobs, lower taxes and safer neighborhoods in the wake of the opioid epidemic and related crime wave that threatens the health, safety, and welfare of communities across the state.
“The people of Southern Illinois absolutely need someone who shares their values and can be a strong, independent, and conservative voice in Springfield,” said Plummer. “My family and I built R.P. Lumber and several other businesses here because this is our home. I love Southern Illinois and I see first-hand the hard work, honesty, and integrity practiced every day by people throughout our communities. Unfortunately, our values and our people seem to have been forgotten by politicians in Springfield.”
This summer, the legislature pushed for a vote that raised the Illinois state income tax by 32% without enacting any significant spending reforms. Illinois families are reportedly paying the highest overall taxes in the nation.
“Illinois politicians are harming working people by pushing failed policies that make it harder to start a business, earn a living, or just put food on the table. I believe the powerful work ethic and traditional values of the people in Southern Illinois are what can actually change our state for the better.”
If elected, Plummer supports lowering and capping out-of-control property taxes, will fight to reduce the regulations that destroy quality jobs throughout Southern Illinois, will be a staunch advocate for giving law enforcement the tools they need to win the war against crime, and promises to represent the strong family values of Southern Illinois.
“I want voters to know that I will always defend the rights of the unborn. Recently, a law was passed that forces Illinois taxpayers to foot the bill for thousands of abortions. I pledge that when I go to Springfield I will file a bill that repeals this law and bans taxpayer funding of abortions in our state. I’m running because the people of Southern Illinois are sending a clear message to Springfield politicians: we won’t be ignored and we are done paying for a broken, morally bankrupt system that we never wanted. I will deliver that message at every opportunity, loud and clear.”
Jason was born and raised in Southern Illinois and lives with his wife, Shannon, in Edwardsville. In addition to being Vice President at R.P. Lumber, Plummer is an intelligence officer in the Navy Reserves, is a member of the First Baptist Church of Maryville, serves on the board of Carmi Baptist Children’s Home, and is very active in several other civic, business, and charitable organizations. In 2010, Plummer was the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor, fighting for conservative principles on the ticket with Bill Brady.