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Paul Blair

Jim Pendergraph Supports $2 Trillion Tax Hike


Posted by Paul Blair on Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012, 8:59 AM PERMALINK


North Carolina Congressional candidate Jim Pendergraph supports a federal budget that raises taxes by two trillion dollars. In March, Pendergraph made a written commitment to voters to oppose higher taxes by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. It now appears as if he has no intention of keeping that promise.  After Americans for Tax Reform called on Pendergraph to clarify his stance, his true tax hike intentions became crystal clear. 

In an endorsement meeting with the Charlotte Observer, Pendergraph said, “balancing the budget would require something like the Bowles-Simpson plan, and specifically said taxes may have to rise as part of a comprehensive plan to erase the deficit.”

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, who rightly voted against Simpson-Bowles, writes: “Relative to current policy baseline, the proposal would increase revenues by $2 trillion over 10 years.” Simply put, the plan is an enormous tax hike and would be a blatant Pledge violation.

Pendergraph didn’t stop there. He went on to say, “Let’s be honest – it’s not going to be without pain for all of us.”  In other words, Pendergraph thinks that the solution to the federal government’s spending problem is to raise taxes. This is the same mindset that resulted in voters rejecting the failed economic policies of the Democrats in November of 2010.

North Carolinans know better. With state unemployment at 9.4%,  taxpayers and hardworking citizens in the 9th District deserve more than a candidate who can’t make up his mind about which economic policies to implement in addressing our nation’s problems. Not only has Pendergraph said that he “would consider taxes,” but we now know that those taxes amount to about $2 trillion.

 “By supporting the Simpson-Bowles tax hike recommendations, Jim Pendergraph demonstrates that he is out of touch with the taxpayers of North Carolina,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “Voters should know that by voting for Pendergraph in the July run-off, they are voting for a candidate who has raised taxes locally and promises to do tax hikes on a much larger scale if he gets to Washington.”

[PDF of Press Release]

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What Tax Hikes Does Beth Anne Rankin Support?


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, May 18th, 2012, 2:55 PM PERMALINK


Americans for Tax Reform calls on Congressional candidate Beth Anne Rankin to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in her bid for the GOP nomination in Arkansas’s 4th Congressional District. Only Tom Cotton has taken the Pledge in Arkansas’s 4th district. Rankin, a Pledge signer in her 2010 bid for Congress, has confirmed that this time around she will not make the same promise to taxpayers.

Regarding the Pledge, Rankin’s campaign manager said that for the 2012 election, Rankin “will not be signing it again.” Voters deserve to know why she was willing to make the commitment to oppose higher taxes in 2010 but not in 2012. With Democrats in Congress constantly calling for higher taxes, the Pledge to oppose tax hikes is no less important today than it was in 2010.  

Currently, 98% of Republicans in Congress have signed the Pledge. This includes the entire Arkansas GOP Congressional delegation. By refusing to sign the Pledge, if Rankin is elected, the taxpayers of Arkansas’s 4th Congressional District will not have an ally in Washington, D.C.

 “The voters in Arkansas have a right to know where a candidate stands on the issues before electing them to Congress,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “It’s only logical to assume that if she won’t sign the Pledge then she has plans to raise taxes.”

 “I applaud Tom Cotton for his dedication to the taxpayers of Arkansas,” continued Norquist. “Taxpayers deserve to know that the men and women they elect to office will stand on their side against the special interests and tax hikes in Washington. I urge Rankin to join with Cotton in promising never to raise taxes on the voters of Arkansas.”

[PDF of Press Release]

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What Tax Hikes Does Jim Pendergraph Support?


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, May 11th, 2012, 3:15 PM PERMALINK


Americans for Tax Reform calls on Congressional candidate Jim Pendergraph to tell voters what taxes he intends on raising. In his bid for the Republican nomination in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District, Pendergraph signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. Immediately after signing the Pledge, Pendergraph seemed to walk-back on the promise he made to voters in North Carolina.

On April 28, in an interview with the Charlotte Observer, Pendergraph “said he would consider taxes” if efforts to reduce the deficit failed. What Pendegraph seems to be ignoring is the fact that when tax hikes are on the table, efforts to reduce spending – and in turn the deficit – are doomed to fail. 

This isn’t the first time that Jim Pendergraph has left the door open for higher taxes. In fact, as the Mecklenburg County Commissioner vice-chair, he supported a measure to increase local property taxes, stating, “I think it’s worth” the increase. The higher tax goes into effect on July 1, five days after the Congressional run-off.

Voters in North Carolina deserve to know whether Jim Pendergraph plans on keeping his promise to oppose higher taxes and get serious about spending restraint in Washington. Only by taking tax hikes off the table is this possible.

“By signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, Jim Pendergraph made a clear promise to oppose efforts to increase taxes,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “Voters deserve to know whether he intends on breaking that promise if he gets to Washington.”

“Taxpayers understand that the biggest problem with Washington politicians is their unwillingness to make the tough decisions about reining in out of control spending. I urge Jim Pendergraph to clarify whether or not he plans on keeping his promise to the voters of North Carolina before they vote in next month’s runoff.”

[PDF of Press Release]
 

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ATR Releases 2012 List of Federal Pledge Signers in North Carolina


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, May 4th, 2012, 5:51 PM PERMALINK


Americans for Tax Reform released an updated list of incumbents and challengers in North Carolina who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. These candidates have made a written commitment to their constituents to never raise their taxes. ATR strongly encourages taxpayers to consider those who have made this commitment when they vote on Tuesday, May 8th. The list of incumbents and challengers who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is as follows:

Incumbents

  • Richard Burr (SEN)
  • Renee Ellmers (NC-02)
  • Walter Jones Jr. (NC-03)
  • Virginia Foxx (NC-05)
  • Howard Coble (NC-06)
  • Sue Myrick (NC-09)
  • Patrick McHenry (NC-10)

Challengers

  • Sonya Holmes (NC-02)
  • David Rouzer (NC-07)
  • Ilario Gregory Pantano (NC-07)
  • Richard Hudson (NC-08)
  • Scott Keadle (NC-08)
  • John Whitley (NC-08)
  • Vernon Robinson (NC-08)
  • Dan Barry (NC-09)
  • Andy Dulin (NC-09)
  • Ken Leonczyk (NC-09)
  • Richard Lynch (NC-09)
  • Jim Pendergraph (NC-09)
  • Robert Pittenger (NC-09)
  • Mike Steinberg (NC-09)
  • Mark Meadows (NC-11)
  • Jeff Hunt (NC-11)
  • Vance Patterson (NC-11)
  • Ethan Wingfield (NC-11)
  • Paul Coble (NC-13)
  • George Holding (NC-13)
  • Bill Randall (NC-13)
 

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What Tax Hikes Do John McGoff and Susan Brooks Support?


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, May 4th, 2012, 5:41 PM PERMALINK


Americans for Tax Reform calls on John McGoff and Susan Brooks to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in their bids for the GOP nomination in Indiana’s 5th Congressional District. If they continue to refuse to sign the Pledge, they should tell voters exactly which taxes they intend to hike if elected to Congress. Former Congressman David McIntosh, Marion Mayor Wayne Seybold, and Attorney Jack Lugar are currently the only candidates to sign the “no-new taxes” Pledge in this crowded primary field.

The Pledge commits signers to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses … and oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates.”

Currently, 98% of Republicans in Congress have signed the Pledge. This includes the entire Indiana GOP House delegation and Representative Dan Burton, who is retiring this year. By refusing to sign the Pledge, if McGoff or Brooks are elected, the taxpayers of Indiana’s 5th Congressional District will no longer have an ally in Washington, D.C.

“The voters in Indiana have a right to know where candidates stand on the issues before electing them to Congress,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “It’s only logical to assume that if they won’t sign the Pledge then they have plans to raise taxes.”

 “I applaud David McIntosh, Wayne Seybold, and Jack Lugar for their dedication to the taxpayers of Indiana,” continued Norquist. “Taxpayers deserve to know that the men and women they elect to office will stand on their side against the special interests and tax hikes in Washington. I urge McGoff and Brooks to join with the others in promising never to raise taxes on the voters of Indiana.”

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Ric Killian and Edwin Peacock Support $2 Trillion Tax Hike


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, May 4th, 2012, 4:47 PM PERMALINK


In their bid to secure the Republican nomination in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional district, both Ric Killian and Edwin Peacock refuse to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. By examining their websites, it is now clear why. Both Killian and Peacock admit that they think the best solution to our fiscal crisis is a $2 trillion tax hike.

According to Ric Killian’s website, he believes that we should “adopt fundamental Simpson-Bowles fiscal recommendations.” According to Edwin Peacock’s website, the Simpson-Bowles fiscal recommendations are “the roadmap to correct this problem.

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, who voted against Simpson-Bowles, writes:
“Relative to a current policy baseline, the proposal would increase revenues by $2 trillion over 10 years.” [“Expanded Views on the Fiscal Commission,” by Paul Ryan, Dec. 4, 2010]

The Heritage Foundation scored Simpson-Bowles as a $3.3 trillion tax increase over ten years:
“Overall, the fiscal commission would raise taxes by $3.3 trillion over the decade.” Heritage also wrote that Bowles-Simpson would be “the highest sustained tax burden in American history.” [“Fiscal Commission Report: Too Much Taxes, Not Enough Spending Cuts,” by Brian Riedl, Dec. 3, 2010]

 Americans for Tax Reform calls on Ric Killian and Edwin Peacock to side with the taxpayers of North Carolina by renouncing the Simpson-Bowles plan and signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. 

 “By supporting the Simpson-Bowles recommendations, Ric Killian and Edwin Peacock demonstrate that they are out of touch with the taxpayers of North Carolina,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “Voters should know that by voting for either Killian or Peacock, they are voting for a candidate who promises to raise their taxes when they get to Washington.”

In the crowded primary, Dan Barry, Andy Dulin, Ken Leonczyk, Richard Lynch, Jim Pendergraph, Robert Pittenger, and Mike Steinberg have all signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses … and oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates.”

“I urge Killian and Peacock to join with the others in promising never to raise taxes on the voters of North Carolina,” continued Norquist. “All candidates should recognize that higher taxes are not the solution to Washington’s problems.”

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ATR Releases 2012 List of Federal Pledge Signers in Pennsylvania


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, April 20th, 2012, 5:17 PM PERMALINK


Americans for Tax Reform released an updated list of incumbents and challengers in Pennsylvania who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. These candidates have made a written commitment to their constituents to never raise their taxes. ATR strongly encourages taxpayers to consider those who have made this commitment when they vote on Tuesday, April 24th. The list of incumbents and challengers who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is as follows:

Incumbents

  • Pat Toomey (SEN)
  • Mike Kelly (PA-03)
  • Glenn Thompson (PA-05)
  • Jim Gerlach (PA-06)
  • Pat Meehan (PA-07)
  • Michael Fitzpatrick (PA-08)
  • Bill Shuster (PA-09)
  • Thomas Marino (PA-10)
  • Lou Barletta (PA-11)
  • Charlie Dent (PA-15)
  • Joseph Pitts (PA-16)
  • Tim Murphy (PA-18)

Challengers

  • Mark Scaringi (SEN)
  • Tom Smith (SEN)
  • Sam Rohrer (SEN)
  • Steve Welch (SEN)
  • Chris Reilly (PA-04)
  • Eric Martin (PA-04)
  • Keith Rothfus (PA-12)

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ATR Releases 2012 List of Federal Pledge Signers in Utah


Posted by Paul Blair on Friday, April 20th, 2012, 5:15 PM PERMALINK


Americans for Tax Reform released an updated list of incumbents and challengers in Utah who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. These candidates have made a written commitment to their constituents to never raise their taxes. ATR strongly encourages taxpayers to consider those who have made this commitment when they vote on Saturday, April 21st. The list of incumbents and challengers who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is as follows:

Incumbents

  • Michael Lee (SEN)
  • Orrin Hatch (SEN)
  • Rob Bishop (UT-01)
  • Jason Chaffetz (UT-03)

 

Challengers

  • Dan Liljenquist (SEN)
  • Cherilyn Eagar (UT-02)
  • David Clark (UT-02)
  • Chuck Williams (UT-02)
  • Mia Love (UT-04)
  • Stephen Sandstrom (UT-04)
  • Carl Wimmer (UT-04)

 

In Utah, candidates will compete in an instant-runoff election at Saturday’s GOP Convention. The lowest placing candidates will be eliminated in each round and supporters of those candidates can choose new candidates in each subsequent round of balloting. If at any time, one candidate received 60% or more of the vote, they will become the nominee. If candidates fail to receive 60% of the votes, the top two finishers will go on to the June 26th primary.

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Florida Congressional Candidate Evelio Otero Signs Taxpayer Protection Pledge


Posted by Paul Blair on Tuesday, April 10th, 2012, 12:00 PM PERMALINK


Retired USAF Officer Evelio “EJ” Otero has signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in his race for Florida’s 14th Congressional District. The Pledge, sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR), commits signers to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses … and oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates."

ATR has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal office since 1987. To date, 41 U.S. Senators and 238 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Pledge. Additionally, thirteen governors and over 1,200 state legislators have signed the Pledge.

“I want to congratulate Mr. Otero for taking the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. The American people have clearly shown their displeasure with the tax-and-spend policies coming from Washington. They want real solutions that create jobs, cut government spending, and get the economy going again,” said Grover Norquist, president of ATR.

“By signing the Pledge, Evelio Otero demonstrates that he understands the problems of hard-working taxpayers nationwide, but especially the taxpayers of Florida.”

“I challenge all candidates for federal office to make the same commitment to taxpayers by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge today,” Norquist continued.

[PDF of Press Release]

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New York Senate Candidate Wendy Long Signs the Taxpayer Protection Pledge


Posted by Paul Blair on Sunday, April 1st, 2012, 12:00 PM PERMALINK


Attorney and conservative activist Wendy Long has signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in her race for New York’s U.S. Senate seat. The Pledge, sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR), commits signers to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses … and oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates."

ATR has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal office since 1987. To date, 41 U.S. Senators and 238 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Pledge. Additionally, thirteen governors and over 1,200 state legislators have signed the Pledge.

“I want to congratulate Ms. Long for taking the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. The American people have clearly shown their displeasure with the tax-and-spend policies coming out of Washington. They want real solutions that create jobs, cut government spending, and get the economy going again,” said Grover Norquist, president of ATR.

“By signing the Pledge, Wendy Long demonstrates that she understands the problems of hard-working taxpayers nationwide, but especially the taxpayers of New York.”

“I challenge all candidates for federal office to make the same commitment to taxpayers by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge today,” Norquist continued.

[PDF of Press Release]

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