Senator Thune Opens Door to Higher Gas Taxes


Don’t you love how the low-tax/anti-tax Republican Party protects the American people from higher taxes?

Just as the price of gasoline is somewhat returning to sanity after several years of the defacto-tax (from the federal government’s war on energy), Senator John Thune (R-SD) and other Republicans are talking about hiking the price of gas with some more taxes.

Americans for Limited Government President Nathan Mehrens issued a statement today condemning the move, stating in part:

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“Somehow, Senate Republicans in their push to reclaim the majority in 2014 failed to inform voters of their apparent intention to raise taxes on gasoline by 12 cents, a 65 percent increase from the current 18.4 cent federal gas tax. Lower gas prices were expected to contribute $1 billion to consumer pocket books for every penny the price drops, providing a private sector energy stimulus that might finally boost demand. It is shocking that the so-called party of low taxes’ first response to the good news of lower gas prices is to raise taxes on gas, regardless of any assertions that the proposal might be revenue neutral.

“The last thing the weak economy needs right now is higher taxes. The highway trust fund has been mismanaged since 2008, because the bureaucracy and Congress did not anticipate lower revenue when demand went down from the recession and people drove less — the true reason the fund now faces a $17 billion a year deficit. The solution to our woes is to find ways to boost economic growth and cut spending, not to kill already slack demand.”

How could we bring more money to the picture for road repairs without extra taxation? How about ending government-forced unionism which increases the cost of doing business for contractors. How about reducing the cost of regulatory compliance for the contractors who build and repair roads (and for every American, for that matter)? How about continuing to lower energy costs through more energy exploration and exploitation (because it takes energy to build and maintain those roads)?

There are things that can be done, but sadly it seems “Republicans” these days are only interested in Democrat-style “solutions” like increasing taxes.


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Woodrow Wilcox

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Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year U.S. Air Force veteran, a political reporter and commentator for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for over 20 years. He was a founding member and board member of the Tea Party groups Citizens for Liberty and the South Dakota Tea Party Alliance. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
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