The IRS and 49 other states agree, a tax on capital gains is an income tax. And an income tax is unconstitutional in Washington State.
In an 85-second video, the Washington Policy Center’s Jason Mercier sums up the three reasons why legislators should vote against the Democrats’ latest attempt to pass a state income tax on capital gains. In advance of today’s House Finance Committee public hearing on HB 1496, Mercier succinctly provides the three strong arguments against passing this unnecessary new tax. 1) “The IRS makes it very clear that a capital gains tax is an income tax” and all other states agree. An income tax is unconstitutional in Washington State. 2) “These taxes are extremely volatile and unpredictable.” During tough economic times, states revenues decline at a time when it is most needed. 3) “Throws away the state’s competitive advantage.” Even Governor Jay Inslee’s Department of Commerce has consistently cited this argument in materials it uses to entice employers to move to Washington State. We will add that there is a fourth good argument that Mercier and others have also noted – a state income tax is simply is not needed now. State revenues are expected to climb an additional 7% over the next two-year budget period under the current tax system. Why should the state tax citizens more during these difficult times, when the state does not need the money? (WPC Center for Government reform Facebook video and Washington Legislature Bill Summary)
Take it from someone tired of Emperor Inslee’s rule, as Representative Jim Walsh (R – Aberdeen) provided his argument for limiting the governor’s emergency powers to 14 days. “It’s a bad thing when one branch of the government, of any government system, has too much authority and too much control over public policy,” he said. “You end up with public policy that doesn’t work for much of the public. And I’m afraid that’s where we are now.” Walsh made these comments earlier this week at the House State Government and Tribal Relations Committee’s public hearing on his HB 1029 proposal. Anna Duff, a Bellevue resident, attempted to appeal to the Democrats by arguing they would not want to have some future Republican governor have this much power. “Imagine your worst political enemy in charge. What could that person do with these powers? How could you say for sure that he or she would not abuse them?” An analyst from the Maine Policy Institute provided a national perspective on the issue. He revealed that Washington State is among the bottom five states which “bestow their governors the sole authority to determine when and where an emergency exists, and when an emergency ceases to exist.” Because liberal interest groups are benefiting from Governor Inslee’s current dictatorial powers, and the taxpayer-funded goodies he has been handing out, it is unlikely that Democrats will join the Republicans in making the necessary reforms to curb these undemocratic powers. (Centralia Chronicle and Washington Legislature Bill Summary)
While teachers unions continue to hold students hostage, and use the pandemic to pad their union bank accounts, Republican legislators are working to assist the most vulnerable who are falling behind during remote learning. Representative Michelle Caldier (R – Port Orchard) has successfully passed through the House Education Committee her bill to prioritize at-risk students once schools return to in-person instruction. Representative Caldier, who is a foster parent, wrote the bill (HB 1366) to prioritize the return of foster care children, homeless students, and other at-risk children to in-person instruction once classes resume. (Washington State House Republican Caucus and Washington Legislature Bill Summary)
As problems continue to plague Governor Inslee’s poorly designed and even more poorly managed vaccination program, an Oak Harbor pharmacy received 1,800 more doses than it was scheduled to receive. Island Drug received 2,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, not the 200 it expected. This enabled 1,800 Oak Harbor area residents to receive the much sought-after vaccine, the it didn’t go to waste. Yet, due to the mistake, there is another community where 1,800 people were supposed to be immunized and yet are still waiting. (Everett Herald)
The Seattle Police Department released body cam footage and video from a private surveillance camera which were taken Tuesday evening, when a suspect murdered one woman and injured another before firing on police and then being shot by police officers. The Department also released audio from two 911 calls, one coming from one of the victims who was shot. The incident occurred at Jimi Hendrix Park in Seattle’s Central District. The video shows an individual approaching a car and pounding a gun on the car’s windows. Then the same individual is seen walking out of the park with a gun in his hands and raising the weapon as officers yell for him to drop the gun. Shots were exchanged. Media reports state that a group of liberal activists gathered at the park on Wednesday evening “to honor the man police shot with candles and a vigil.“ It is not known if the group also “honored” the woman the man murdered. (Seattle Police Department blotter and Seattle Times)
Many aviation analysts agree that Boeing will need to design and build a new airplane to meet the demands of airlines in a post-COVID-19 market, and this might be more bad news for Washington State. At the annual Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance suppliers conference (held virtually this year), many presenters stated that Boeing would need to produce a new 230-seat model to compete with Airbus’ A321neo. This should be concerning to local officials, since many believe it makes sense for the large employer to build new assembly plants in the more business-friendly locations of either Charleston, South Carolina or Huntsville, Alabama. Thus, more blue-collar jobs could be leaving the Puget Sound region in the near future. One analyst predicts that by 2035, Boeing’s Western Washington workforce could decline to under 20,000 employees, from a high of over 100,000 just a couple of decades ago. If so, the decades of liberal anti-business rhetoric, increasing taxes, and labor-demanded regulations will have driven 80,000+ jobs (most of which are family-wage union jobs) out of the state. These job loss possibilities were certainly not helped by Governor Inslee’s selfish anti-Boeing comments made on national TV in 2019. Back then the governor was attempting to attract attention to his failing presidential campaign, by appealing to the sizable anti-business segment of Democrat activists, when he equated Boeing to muggers and blackmailers on The Daily Show. (Seattle Times and NPR/KUOW)
At this morning’s House Finance Committee hearing – on the Democrats’ state income tax on capital gains proposal – Seattle Councilmember Kshama Sawant showed signs of mental instability as she ranted anti-business rhetoric, before finally having her microphone silenced by the Democrat Chair. Sawant was warned three times by Representative Noel Frame (D – Magnolia) to “please keep your comments to the bill at hand.” Sawant ignored the warnings and showed her intellectual command of the subject by continuing to read more of her anti-business rhetoric from a prepared statement. Chair Frame (who is about as close to the Socialist Sawant on ideology as you’ll find in the legislature) had finally had enough and silenced Sawant’s microphone before asking for the next witness to be called. It is not unusual for Councilmember Sawant to rant hate-filled comments at public forums. Yet, it was surprising to see a member of the Democrat establishment actual stand up to Sawant’s crazy behavior. (TVW video of House Finance Committee hearing)
The Washington State Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s ruling and halted a recall effort against Thurston County Sheriff John Snaza. A recall campaign had begun against Sheriff Snaza because he said he would not enforce the state’s mandatory mask orders, and he would instead instruct his deputies to “educate” members of the public about the benefits of wearing a mask. The court ruled that the sheriff’s order “was not manifestly unreasonable. Therefore, the recall charge is neither factually nor legally sufficient, and we reverse the trial court.” If the court wanted to see “manifestly unreasonable”, it could have read any of Jay Inslee’s efforts at re-opening our economy. (The Olympian)
Officials in South Central Washington were nervous about whether their region will be allowed to move forward to Phase 2 next week, and the Governor just announced they are the only portion of the state not allowed to move forward. Governor Inslee keeps randomly changing the data metrics of his arbitrary “Roadmap to Recovery” plan, so officials in the “South Central Region” were not certain if they might have met the numbers needed for Inslee’s permission to reopen parts of their economy again. The region, which includes six extremely diverse counties stretching from the Cascades to the Oregon border (Benton, Columbia, Franklin, Kittitas, Walla Walla, and Yakima), has seen a steady drop in the number of COVID-19 cases, but the positive test rate is at 16%, above the 10% goal demanded by the governor. Many folks agree, if the region had voted for Inslee, like those in the Puget Sound had, these counties would have had a much better chance of moving forward. (Tri-City Herald)
A very unscientific poll conducted by YakTriNews shows that 89% of those who participated do not believe the four lower Snake River dams should be removed. This is not surprising since the dams provide much of the energy for Southeast Washington’s economy, and scientific data has shown that removing the dams would do very little to increase the salmon population. (YakTriNews)
Democrat legislators continue to make it more expensive to live and work in Washington State, as they seek to impose the highest gas tax in the country – and this is before including the 57 cents a gallon Governor Jay Inslee’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard would add. The Democrats have collected all of the transportation pet projects from their members and they will make all of us pay for it. While Democrats continue to say they want to make the tax system fairer, these taxes will impact lower-income workers the most. (Click to read the full Shift Article)
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