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Johnson Seeks Review of Tax Cuts in Town Hall Meeting

Congressman Tim Johnson (R-Urbana) has laid out a vision for his final months in public office, a time he believes that may call for allowing some tax cuts to expire.

In what was described as his first town hall meeting back home in years, Johnson told the more than 100 attendees at Urbana Middle School that he was simply there to listen.

A question regarding tax credits for wind energy prompted the Republican to suggest more than cuts for dealing with a national deficit exceeding $16-trillion.

"Everybody is in room is going to have to share in the sacrifice that's necessary to deal with the debt - including taxpayers who make a lot of money," Johnson said. "Am I philosophically enthralled with the idea of a confiscatory tax system? No, I'm not, because I don't think that's what America is all about. But the reality is, we've got to raise more revenue."

Johnson said the shared sacrifice needs to not only come from personal sacrifice, but each side of the political aisle... to examine other tax credits and loopholes.

"If you give us a huge tax bill - legislation that extends all the tax cuts, I can't say no to a middle class taxpayer just because they also extend the tax cuts to the highest-income Americans,' Johnson said. "But we have to look at that. It's not palatable, it's not philosophically something I support, but it's something we very well may have to do to get a grip on this national debt."

Johnson also took questions on his opposition to military conflicts overseas, immigration, and political discord in Washington.

The retiring Congressman says he has yet to hear from his replacement on the ballot for Illinois' re-drawn 13th Congressional District about a possible endorsement. Johnson said he and Rodney Davis have only spoken for a few minutes.

When his term is up in January and comes home, Johnson said he still plans to do limited work for a local law firm, and teach upper level political science classes at either the University of Illinois, or Illinois State University.

The Congressman said either school would be fine, but believes ISU may better suit his schedule.

(Photo by Jeff Bossert/WILL)