The State of Illinois has passed a bill to officially honour Barack Obama with his birthday becoming a state public holiday “Barack Obama Day.”
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signed a measure Friday to make Aug. 4 “Barack Obama Day” in the state, according to NBC Chicago. The holiday will be celebrated each year on Obama’s birthday beginning in 2018.
The day is “set apart to honour the 44th President of the United States of America who began his career serving the People of Illinois in both the Illinois State Senate and the United States Senate, and dedicated his life to protecting the rights of Americans and building bridges across communities.”
Senate Bill 55 was passed by both state houses with no votes against it.
“I don’t think it should be a formal holiday with paid, forced time off, but I think it should be a day of acknowledgment and celebration,” Governor Bill Rauner was quoted saying.
Governor Rauner resisted calls by Trump supporters who wanted him to oppose and use his influence to fight the bill but he insisted that there was no need to politicise the matter and that Barack Obama should be honoured and celebrated in Illinois.
Barack Obama worked as a community organiser in Illinois before he went to Law School and later returned to the State to work as a civil rights lawyer, a professor at the University of Chicago, a State Senator, a Senator and then in his first term as a Senator ran for President and won.
Born in Hawaii and raised in Hawaii, Obama moved to Chicago, Illinois after his undergraduate studies at Columbia University and made Illinois his home.
Barack Obama has also chosen Chicago as the place where his Presidential Library will be located.
The Republicans in Illinois all supported the move to have Barack Obama Day as a State Public Holiday in a move that was unexpected.
Republicans have for the past 8 years always sought to attack and undermine Barack Obama at every opportunity they get. The birther movement that claimed that Barack Obama was born in Kenya became a trade mark of the Republican Party and led to the rise of Donald Trump.
Trump supporters have criticised Governor Bruce Rauner online and on Breitbart for signing the bill claiming that the Governor has “let down President Trump.”