Every time Democrats tell us they are going to debate House File 807/Senate File 468, which repeals Iowa’s Income Tax deduction on Federal Income Tax (also referred to as putting a “Tax on a Tax”), the public shows up to convey their opposition and watch the proceedings, only to have them postpone the debate to another day.
Why, when Grand-stall and Smurphy tell us that they have the votes to pass the legislation, do they delay getting the work done?
- They don’t have the votes.
- They are afraid that the presence of actual voters might cause some Democrats to think twice about how they will vote.
- They are afraid that the presence of actual voters might cause Governor Culver to think twice about whether he will sign the bill.
- They are afraid they might be forced to say something that is blatantly stupid or a lie in order to make their case stronger.Â Like the bill is revenue neutral (lie) or that lower income Iowans will benefit (lie) or that only rich people will be negatively impacted (stupid).
- Or they are just plain afraid of a headline that might read “Iowa Democrats Lead Government Rebellion Against Taxpayers”.Â I kind of like that one… I hope I don’t get to use.
I suspect we will see a quiet attempt to slip this bill through once they think no one is looking.Â We must, all Iowan taxpayers, keep our eyes and ears open in the coming days to ensure we are there when the votes are cast… the politicians must not be allowed to sneak this through without public scrutiny.
Don’t let them raise your taxes.
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I really don’t get this one when I look at face value.Â Who benefits?Â What is the problem that this solves?Â Don’t be fooled, it’s not about making life better for those with lower incomes… it’s about increasing revenue.Â Even with a “revenue neutral” model for 2010 and 2011, there is a dramatic increase in revenue in 2012 and later.
And if this does pass, two things need to happen:
- Get Democrats out of office.
- Make Republicans PROMISE to fix it when they have control.
If we don’t hold Republicans’ feet to the fire, it will be too easy even for them to accept the inflated revenue and spend it on something.Â This is not intended as a criticism of Republicans (I count myself in their number), but of human nature.
No matter who is in office, you have to hold them accountable.
The political fallout continues for Democrats as they try to fend off criticism for Pat Murphy’s behavior Tuesday evening.Â A letter to the editor in this morning’s Des Moines register lays it out pretty succinctly: characterizing the behavior of the public at Tuesday night’s public meeting prior to being expelled as anything more than brief expressions of disapproval or aproval (granting the first speaker deserved to be treated better) is spurious at best.Â And Kiernan’s accusations that the public’s actions were orchestrated by Republican leaders is an outright lie; I was there during the preparatory time and there was nothing more than providing people with shirt and buttons… no direction to behave in any way.
If you watched KCCI news on Tuesday night (or the story on the web site), you briefly would have seen my ugly mug.Â A number of people have mentioned they noticed and were surprised at what happened.Â One friend’s Facebook Wall comment: “Way to stand up to the man!”.
Democrats have backed up the bus and skipped debating HF 807 either today (Thursday) or Friday it seems.Â Kent Sorenson twittered us last night that majority leaders were working on an amendment that would ensure enough votes would be garnered to get the bill passed.Â They are still working with the Governor to ensure they don’t get surprised by him (like they did on the Voter Irrelvancy Act that lost steam last month).
Iowa Independent had an interesting piece on the use of Twitter during the proceedings.Â I was monitoring Kent Sorenson and the Senate Republican Caucus tweets, while I was commenting via Twitter myself.Â I was also exchanging messages via email with one of the House members.Â If you were following my tweets, you’ll know that my cell battery died shortly after the last speaker finished.
So here’s my two cents worth: One might think that Democrats would wise up and give up on this foolish venture and let it lie for now with the economy the way it is.Â Passing this bill, which is just another case of a solution in desperate need of a problem (if you take it at face value), will just make a large portion of the Iowa voters angry… winning for Democrats on this bill may be worse than losing because they will probably lose over this.Â A bold move at this point would be to stand up and say “We’ve heard Iowans and we get it: we will work on other methods to help lower income Iowans.”.Â Democrats won’t get what they want, but then again they are less likely to lose seats in 2010.Â And if they think that getting this in during the 2009 session has a better chance of being forgotten by November 2010 than if they pushed it through in the 2010 session, that’s a gamble for them.Â This is something that they would be better to find smaller increments to achieve over a longer period.
If their only goal was this bill, that might work.Â The bad news is, this bill IS one of those small increments.Â If you think this HF 807 is a big deal, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!
Lastly, one of the speakers Tuesday night, Mark Grittmann, got in contact with me and we’ve shared emails and a phone call back and forth over the past couple of days.Â He was kind enough to share the text of his speech at the hearing, which one needs to understand is very much tongue-in-cheek, and conveys eloquently the point I made above:
Good evening and thank you for listening to the people of Iowa.Â Iâ€™m Mark Grittmann.Â Iâ€™m not a lobbyist and Iâ€™m not representing any special interest group.Â Iâ€™m just a hard-working American taxpayer.
Iâ€™ve heard the Elimination of Federal Tax deductibility may cause up to a $600 Million tax increase and Iâ€™m all for it.Â And those of you supporting this, say this would be good for the State of Iowa.Â So if a $600 million tax increase is good for Iowa, then I think you should do more, so wouldnâ€™t a $1.2 Billion tax increase be even better?
Some have foolishly argued against it.Â Can you believe it?
- Some say the 20% increase in State spending over the last 2 years should be reversed.
- Some say this Bill is revenue neutral.Â But if that is true, and it doesnâ€™t change anything, then why do it?
- Some say that Government, like family households, should live within their means and not let spending get out of control.
- Some say a tax increase during a Global Financial Crisis and Recession is the worst thing for the economy, and that tax increases would hurt employers, causing a loss of jobs and people would leave Iowa to find work in other States.
- Some say the facts about this Bill as to its true impact on taxes isnâ€™t known or has not been fully disclosed, so how can this Bill even be debated yet?Â One news report showed that 40% of the individuals receiving a tax increase make less than $40,000 per year.Â And 69% of the individuals receiving a tax increase make less than $70,000 per year.
- Some say that in November 2010, voters will remember the legislators who raised their taxes by 20%.
And thatâ€™s why I think this $600 million tax increase is good for Iowa.Â It will bring new and improved, and more fiscally responsible Legislators to the State of Iowa in November 2010.
Thank you for listening, and good night.
That gives me an idea.Â We should call this “The Legislative Replacement Act of 2009/2010”.
The news links herein are to Des Moines Register and Iowa Independent.
(Updated with message from Ed Failor Jr. below. – Ed.)
We received word from Ed Failor Jr. of Iowans For Tax Relief that Thursdayâ€™s planned debate on House File 807, Repeal of Federal Deductibility, has been canceled. We donâ€™t yet know when it will be scheduled. You may have heard that Iowans For Tax Relief were asking for people to show up at the Capitol on April 2, but due to this late event, that request is canceled.
We were wondering whether the Majority Party was trying to delay things until the media attention died down, or if they were working on some other tactic to sneak the bill through.Â Kent Sorenson, Republican House Member representing House District 74 (Warren County), tells us via twitter tonight that the Democrats are working on an amendment in an attempt to ensure they can get 51 votes.Â This could be interesting.
We still strongly urge you to contact your representatives to express your opinion about the bill. A tax on a tax is not good for Iowa.
To find out who your representatives are and contact them:
The Conservative Reader is committed to ensuring that you know when your rights are in danger.Â This is one of those times.
Update: Message From Ed Failor:
Great news…we have just learned that the Democrat Leadership in the Iowa House has canceled debate tomorrow on the bill to force you to pay a tax on a tax. This means we do not need you to travel to the State Capitol tomorrow. This is a small victory for us, as typically, this action would indicate as of tonight Speaker Murphy does not have the votes to repeal federal deductibility.
We must remain vigilant. We need you to continue contacting your Legislators and Governor Culver to remind them it is not fair to pay a tax on a tax. If federal deductibility is repealed over 490,000 Iowa taxpayers will see a tax increase, not to mention that of those 180,000 people make less than $40,000 per year.
We will continue fighting for you, and we are not taking anything for granted until House File 807, the bill to force you to pay a tax on a tax, is officially dead and we have taken back the People’s House.
Your financial support is more critical than ever so we can continue airing on message of “No Tax on a Tax” on television and radio stations across Iowa. If you are able to support our efforts, please make a secure online donation to Iowans for Tax Relief today by clicking here.
Ed Failor, Jr.
Iowans for Tax Relief
Pat Murphy will probably say he was well within his rights to clear the gallery at tonight’s Public Hearing on House File 807, the bill to repeal the deduction of Federal Income Tax from Iowa Income Tax.
But he was so wrong.
The galleries were filled with people who opposed the bill.Â It is interesting that Democrats could not raise up any more than a handful of speakers to support the bill, none to sit in the gallery who support the bill.Â And those who spoke in favor were the expected litany of social services and union leaders who would either benefit directly from the bill or are beholden to Democrats.Â One speaker in favor, it was observed, sounded distinctly as if he did not even believe what he was saying.
It’s intriguing to see people mischaracterize the events in the House this evening.Â I was there.Â The very first speaker was roundly booed, and I’ll admit that was inappropriate.Â The public was warned.Â After that, no other speaker in favor of the bill received much more than a low murmur of opposition, and that was not worth talking about.
The galleries were full of people who could not contain, however, their enthusiasm and support for the comments of those who actually made sense, spoke for Iowans and opposed the bill.Â What Pat Murphy (who by the way was not visible in the chamber except when he threw the public out) was facing was an uprising of Iowans who have finally had it with the continued outrageous spending and tax increases being sugar coated as a tax reduction.
Ed Failor Jr., President of Iowans For Tax Relief, was one of many who hit the target on this issue: it will tell our graduating college seniors that there is no room for them or their dreams.Â This bill will impact them coming out of school into the work force (those making under $40,000 will be negatively impacted) and will impact their dreams to be successful.Â They will be a target.
Many small business owners got up to speak in opposition to the bill.Â We already know that small businesses, who employ the majority of Iowans, are at significant risk in the current economy.Â And this bill will most dramatically impact their tax burden.Â They will pay more.Â Several speakers had taken the time to ask their tax preparers to calculate the impact of the bill on their taxes.Â One man explained that he would see a 50% increase in his State tax obligation.
Others spoke very eloquently about the absurdity of the bill.Â I think there were perhaps 5 or 6 who spoke in favor, and 40 or so against it.
The straw that broke Murphy’s back was the applause after college student Greg Baker spoke.Â Â Busloads of students from Ames and Iowa City came.Â It was encouraging to so many students there who share our conservative values.Â I just hope they don’t all decide to move out of state after this session is over.
And once the crowd found out they were being ejected, essentially turning the “public” hearing into a private one, that’s when the shouting and anger showed.Â People were escorted out, and still in an orderly fashion, but not without getting a few messages in.Â The one that rings the loudest is:
“This is the people’s house, but not any longer!”
A later speaker, Ted Morgan, said:
“I’ve never been in a house where the tenants evicted the landlords.”
Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn put it well:
“Never have I seen such a gross display of arrogance and disdain for Iowa taxpayers.Â The Iowa House is supposed to serve as the people’s house, the house where great ideas are debated and discussed.”
Earlier in the day, Rep. Paul Shomshor, D-Council Bluffs and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, was quoted as saying:
“We think eliminating federal deductibility is helpful for families and middle-class taxpayers,” said Rep. Paul Shomshor, D-Council Bluffs and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.
I don’t know how an intelligent person can get away with making a statement like that.Â Either arrogant or stupid, either way it seems obvious Iowa has made a huge mistake electing Democrats into office.
Iowans are starting to see the truth; Murphy may have single-handedly lit a fire he won’t be able to contain.