Tollway ‘Website of Shame’ Falls One Vote Short

Most legislation to come out of the Illinois General Assembly passes by wide margins. But every now and then, lawmakers consider something in which every vote counts. As Brian Mackey reports, they were reminded of that Friday.

Members of the Illinois House were considering legislation that would shame toll-road scofflaws. The Illinois Tollway would have a website with the names of people who haven’t paid, as Democratic Rep. Lou Lang explained to Republican Mike Bost.

LANG: “This is just an additional tool to embarrass people so maybe they’ll pay what they owe.”
BOST: “It’s kind of like a tollway scarlet letter.”

The idea is controversial, so it’s not surprising that when members were asked to vote, it was close — so close, in fact, that it fell one vote short. Lang appeared surprised.

LANG: “So I’d like to do two things: I’d like to find the person who changed their vote, and I’d like to put it on postponed consideration.”

Postponed consideration just means Lang can call it up for a do-over after he found his vote swapper.
A moment later, freshman Rep. Kathleen Willis, a Democrat from Addison, outed herself.

WILLIS: “I’d like to change my vote on this to an ‘aye’ vote; I accidentally voted no.”

The tollway scarlet letter could come up for a re-vote at any time.

— Brian Mackey

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