Thursday, February 21, 2008

Transportation Bill: 1; Taxpayers: 0

As featured on Tundra Politics, the Minnesota House has passed the behemoth tax-laden, pork-laden transportation bill:

The tax increases include a 1/4% sales tax increase, a raise in the gas tax, and a raise in the overall vehicle registration fees that will be paid over the life of a car.

This tax increase is a tax on working middle class members. It’s a tax on contractors, who are required to drive extensively to get their jobs done. It’s a tax on taxi drivers, who will receive less wages as their company pays more to the State in gas taxes. It’s a tax on farmers, who are greatly affected by gas prices. Delivery truck drivers, commuters, people who can’t afford a high gas mileage vehicle, parents who drive their kids to school, etc… etc…. etc.

Marty Seifert had proposed an alternative. He proposed a bill that would fund the roads, but remove some of the pork projects that the Democrats have already added to the budget. It would also use state bonds to pay for major projects.

Unfortunately, the DFL did not let this bill leave the committee. If they really cared about the people of Minnesota, the DFL would have encouraged an open debate on the bills. Instead, they limited debate, blindsided the public, and went after the tax burden increase on the people they were elected to represent.

Count 5 RINO republicans in the yea total; including Bud Heidgerken from nearby Freeport.

Steve Gottwalt gave a resounding speech today on the floor of the Minnesota House, saying that he was ashamed that the legislators wouldn't take the trouble to prioritize current spending, but instead chose to pass the burden lock, stock and barrel to the taxpayers, funding the entire $8 billion of the pork-laden bill in the form of new taxes.

However, upon speaking with Steve Gottwalt just moments ago, he appeared confident that the Republicans in the State legislature had enough votes to sustain a gubernatorial veto. "Last year we had five Republicans vote for the transportation bill; this year we again have five Republicans. So we're in the same boat."

At a time of record gas prices, isn't it something how the party of the "common man" is all too willing to place an undue burden of taxation upon those whom they purport to champion.