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Illinoisans yearning to flee — those TV ads

Half of the 12.8 million people living in the state of Illinois would move away, if they only could find a way to break their chains. And about a fifth — 19 percent — say they plan to do so in the next year. Just load up the old Model T and head, well, anywhere. That happy place that isn’t Illinois; 17 percent believe Illinois is the worst state in the United States.

Golly.

While the temptation is to deflect that with a quip — something like, “And after this past winter, who can blame them?”— it does seem a moment that calls for, if not soul-searching, then at least critical thought. We live in a hellhole, apparently, and didn’t even know it.

My first instinct was to see if the poll was commissioned by Bruce Rauner. He’s staking his political future on convincing the electorate that our home state is a lousy place to live. Maybe he’s behind this.

Nope, Gallup poll. Fairly reliable. Illinois, dead last, with twice as many residents yearning for elsewhere than top-rated Hawaii. There, only 23 percent would like to move, though Gallup doesn’t record where. Where do you go to improve your lot if you’re already in Hawaii? Heaven, I suppose.

What’s going on here?

The Gallup folks wonder if it’s not due to the corruption that is uncovered here (oh sure, blame the media . . . ) I don’t buy that. While we do miss the money siphoned into the pockets of these crooks, is it a reason to move?

CONTINUE READING NEIL STEINBERG’S COLUMN AT SUNTIMES.COM