Upper Left Coast

Thoughts on politics, faith, sports and other random topics from a red state sympathizer in indigo-blue Portland, Oregon.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Quote of the Day: Raising Oregon Taxes

For the last several days, the Oregonian has been singing the praises of Oregon Republicans for finding a compromise that eliminates the corporate kicker and increases corporate taxes in order to create a rainy-day fund.

In Sunday's print edition, resident conservative David Reinhard framed it as a Republican victory (I can't find it on the paper's website), under the headline, "Why Scott and his House GOP are smiling."

But.

In this morning's Oregonian, we learn that all is not hunky-dory in either the Oregon business community or the Republican caucus. Once the details were examined, it turned out that the tax structure could mean identical businesses, one of which earns a dollar more in income than the other, could be paying a difference of tens of thousands of dollars in taxes. And suddenly, the supposed groundswell of support from the Oregon business community is unraveling, as small business owners -- you know, the ones who provide the vast majority of jobs in Oregon? -- protest a huge government-sponsored grab at their livelihood.

But never mind that. They're just whiners. A spokesman for House Minority Leader Wayne Scott said "there are no second thoughts" in the Republican caucus. The story by Betsy Hammond added:
Democrats acknowledged imperfections in the plan but said lawmakers in both parties need to honor the deal brokered by their leaders. Getting a rainy day fund for Oregon and raising its archaic $10 minimum corporate tax are too important, they said.
In other words: we know it stinks, but we do what our leadership tells us to do. The possibility of putting you small business owners out of business or creating layoffs is so far down on the list of concerns that it doesn't register. We want the good press from the Oregonian telling us how great we are.

In fairness, the story does say that House Majority Leader Dave Hunt and others "are willing to modify the new corporate minimum tax rates after the package clears both the House and Senate." Call me a skeptic, but I'll believe it when I see it. Once the package is approved by both chambers, there is little reason to believe the Democrat-controlled legislature won't simply send it on to the governor.

As Dare!PDX noted at Northwest Republican this morning, now that Republicans are on board, suddenly the press is calling it a tax increase, something it was loath to do when Democrats were leading the charge. And Democrats are giddy with excitement over the GOP-crafted plan to raise the corporate minimum as high as $50,000 because, Hammond notes:
it would generate an additional $150 million for each two-year budget.
And that should tell you everything you need to know about the supposed victory of the GOP, about the party's commitment to low taxes, and about the Republicans' support for small businesses.

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1 Comments:

  • At 3/09/2007 11:58 AM, Anonymous OregonCrossroads said…

    Hey, just wanted to invite you to check out OregonCrossroads.org, a new blog sponsored by the Oregon Family Council. Check us out!

     

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