Tuesday, May 30, 2006

A needed balance

Steve Sviggum: Senate DFL continues to pursue its mission: tax and spend
If it moves, tax it.

Ronald Reagan used those words to describe liberal tax policies. The Minnesota Senate DFL evidently took them to heart.

If you wear it, tax it. If you drive it, tax it. If you buy it, tax it. If you make it, tax it. It's true. The DFL has never met a tax increase it didn't like.

If you think that's an unfair statement, take a look at the more than $4 billion in tax increases DFLers have proposed since 2003.

Beginning in 2003, the Senate DFL tried to resolve a budget problem with tax increases. At a time when the state needed to tighten its grip on spending, the Senate DFL offered a $1.32 billion increase in individual incomes taxes, cigarette taxes, state general levy and corporate franchise taxes to fund its initiatives. Budget problems result not from taxing too little but from spending too much....

When Minnesota has a $1 billion surplus and revenue growth that continues to exceed expectations, billions of dollars in tax increases is irresponsible governing for today and the future of our state. The House Republican majority brings a needed balance to the huge DFL taxing machine.

Government needs to set priorities, not burden taxpayers. The Bank of Minnesota Taxpayers does have its limits. It does not have a $4 billion balance and there is no overdraft protection.

Steve Sviggum is speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives.

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