Before the 07 tax increases, we had a period of big spending and "fee" increases, "tax shifts" and the like, and Ken Sikkema was a major player in this as the Senate majority leader. Rick Johnson and Ken Sikkema worked well with Granholm's fiscal liberalism against the more rank and file republicans. The fee increases were in 04. The "Tax shift" was in 06. The tax increase was in 07. These were all cases of taxpayers paying more money to the government who blows it like Tony Montana blew cocaine in Scarface.
I agree with the Michigan Chamber of Commerce more often than I disagree. I personally like a lot of the folks there, including Rich Studley who is usually right on the issues, including taxes. 8 out of 10 times I agree. This is one of the two. I also am well aware that Road Builders are part of the chamber membership and this is influencing some of the policy. On the gas tax increase push that has been going on 4+years, I could not disagree more.
Republicans need to take a lesson from Sikkema. The lesson is one year. 2006. Thanks to his policies which were even worse than Bush on fiscal issues, too many thought of republicans as democrat lite. It's time for less government and more freedom, and the gas tax is the worst tax of them all.
From the Chamber and MIRS
Supporters Try To Spark Idled Road Funding Issue
Former Senate Majority Leader Ken SIKKEMA and Michigan Chamber of Commerce President Rich STUDLEY held a "press roundtable" where they emphasized that Republicans have a long history of distinguishing between general tax hikes and user fees.
The context of the discussion was the ongoing effort to get Michigan officials to raise the revenues required to get the state's roads back into some semblance of good repair. A push for a hike in the state's 19-cent gas tax has been going on for at least four and a half years.
Sikkema, as Senior Policy Fellow for Public Sector Consultants, has issued a white paper to demonstrate that anti-tax Republicans have traditionally supported Gas Tax hikes.
"Over the past 12 years, 15 states have raised their Gas Tax," Sikkema told reporters. "Of those, 11 had Republican governors."
Mr. Sikkema, how many governors have we lost in the last 12 years? I don't give a damn what party raised the gas tax, it's wrong, especially as we have one of the highest gas taxes in the country, and one of the highest gas prices in the country. The deathblow to this economy was the high gas prices in 08. People's budgets were not ready for that, the cost of everything went up due to shipping, and it was a matter of time before the foreclosures cames in, the businesses folded, the jobs were lost, and the Republicans got their ass kicked. Now Sikkema wants to increase the price of gas again, and bring the money to this clustermuck of a government. I'm glad he's a former senator. Mark Jansen was a big improvement.