ILLINOIS — Barack Obama Day could soon become a holiday in the state. Lawmakers hope the former president’s birthday, August 4, will be recognized as a statewide holiday.
Those who oppose the bill argue, if state workers get the day off, it could cost more than $3 million a year.
Democrats who proposed the bill say, like previous presidents, Obama’s Illinois roots and presidential legacy deserves state recognition.
“Lincoln’s birthday became a holiday and I believe president Obama is a new era of Abraham Lincoln ’cause of the struggles he went through and what he achieved in spite of all the opposition,” says State Senator Patricia Van Pelt.
If passed, it would be Illinois’ first holiday in 40 years.