"There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with
power to endanger the public liberty." - - - - John Adams

Friday, January 9, 2015

Senate GOP: Higher Gas Taxes Are On The Table

That Didn't Take Long

  • The first words out of the mouths of Senate Republicans is to raise taxes.  Somehow "I told you so" just isn't enough.
  • Disclosure  -  For the first time ever, in 2014 I left blank every statewide office here in the People's Republic of California.  I refused to vote for any Republican. (Third party candidates were banned from the ballot.)  This Senate GOP gas tax proposal and the re-election of Speaker Boehner proved I made the correct choice.  The Big Government GOP does not represent me.

(Wall Street Journal)  -  Some leading Republican senators are signaling they might be willing to embrace a political anathema: raising the nation’s gasoline tax.
Senate Environment and Public Works Chairman James Inhofe (R., Okla.), who just took the reins of the panel, said he is open to considering raising the gas tax as a way to help pay for the dwindling Highway Trust Fund that keeps up the nation’s roads and other transportation infrastructure.
“Everything is on the table,” Mr. Inhofe said in a Wednesday briefing with reporters to preview his committee agenda. He said his top priority is passing a long-term transportation bill, whose spending runs out at the end of May.
With gasoline prices at lows not seen since 2009, some political observers and business executives say now is the ideal time to raise the 18.4 cent-a-gallon tax on gasoline and the 24.4 cent-a-gallon tax on diesel fuel, which haven’t increased since 1993. The taxes are the main source of revenue for the highway trust fund.
Mr. Inhofe didn’t say he supports raising the gas tax, and he refutes referring to it as such. “It’s not a tax,” Mr. Inhofe said. “It’s a user fee.”
He also said this period of cheap gas isn’t really a window of opportunity given it could close sooner than Congress is going to act. “You don’t know what’s going to happen to the price of gas,” Mr. Inhofe said.
His cautious statements resemble those made recently by other leading Republican senators, whose party assumed control of the Senate on Tuesday and strengthened its majority in the House.
“We’ll have to look at that. I’m looking at everything—every possible way of taking care of the highway bill,” said Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch (R., Utah).
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