States With Democratic Governors Raise Taxes; Those With Republicans Lower Them

High tax illustration

If the Republican Party is working for the people who vote their candidates into office anywhere at all, it appears to be happening in the States, where the election of GOP Governors and lawmakers tends to correlate to results that reflect the party’s platform more closely than at the Federal and executive levels.

Take a newly released survey of recent taxation trends in all 50 States. In broad terms, those States that have had Republican Governors in office since 2011 have seen a net decrease in State taxes of $36 billion. Over the same time period, States with Democratic Governors have seen a net State-level tax increase of $58 billion.

The report, released last week by Americans for Tax Reform, notes that the comparison represents a general trend rather than a one-to-one correlation between political affiliation and States’ fiscal policies. Yet the trend is there, led by Democratic Governors Pat Quinn of Illinois ($12 billion in higher taxes) and Martin O’Malley of Maryland ($3 billion since 2011; $11 billion since 2008).

“It should be noted that many, but not all, Democrat governors have raised taxes,” the report summary states. “In fact, Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) recently went against the Democratic governor grain by signing a corporate tax cut into law this year.

“However, in general, Democrat governors have been increasing taxes in their states, while Republican governors have been moving in the opposite direction. With some of the politicians on this list considering a White House run, this is a compilation worth saving.”

View Americans for Tax Reform’s item-by-item review of each of the tax increase initiatives led by Democratic Governors here. It’s worth mentioning that California voters have approved about $18 billion in increased tax initiatives under Democratic Governor Jerry Brown. Subtract that amount from the national total, and the tax increases under Democratic Governors still total $40 billion.

Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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