Will Upton

AFL-CIO and Steve Kagen Campaign Caught Telling Lies about the "No New Taxes" Pledge

Posted by Will Upton on Friday, October 8th, 2010, 2:34 PM PERMALINK

Wisconsin voters should expect Rep. Steve Kagen and his allies in Big Labor to ramp up their desperate attacks on Reid Ribble and the Taxpayer Protection Pledge as Election Day looms near.  It appears that Kagen’s allies will do whatever it takes to smear Reid Ribble and the Pledge, all-the-while distracting Wisconsin voters from Kagen’s dismal track record on job growth and the economy.  By signing the Pledge, Ribble has promised to voters that he will never raise income taxes on individuals and/or businesses.  Kagen and Big Labor’s misleading attacks are merely a ploy to confuse voters and ensure that Big Labor will retain their representative in Congress.

The attacks claim that Ribble, by signing the Pledge, intends to “protect companies that ship jobs overseas.”  Unfortunately for Kagen and Big Labor their dishonest claims have been refuted by numerous news sources and even the non-partisan voter advocate, FactCheck.org.  Brooks Jackson, director of FactCheck.org, called the claims against the Pledge “blatantly false.”  John Ralston, host of the Nevada television program Face to Face, said similar claims made in Nevada were “thoroughly misleading.”  To cut through the false claims and dishonest statements being made, voters should ask Rep. Kagen why he and his friends in Big Labor think tax hikes will create jobs.


AFL-CIO and Steve Kagen Campaign Caught Telling Lies about the “No New Taxes” Pledge

Big Labor and Kagen campaign desperate to distort Ribble’s “no new taxes” promise

WASHINGTON, DCThe AFL-CIO and the Steve Kagen campaign recently launched a new line of attack on Reid Ribble by attempting to mislead voters about the actual meaning of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. The goal of the Pledge is to protect taxpayers and businesses from tax increases. The AFL-CIO and Kagen campaign’s charges follow the patently false claims made by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) earlier in the year – claims that the non-partisan FactCheck.org agrees are “blatantly false.”

The “No New Taxes” Pledge commits a signer 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.” By making this promise, Ribble has taken tax hikes off the table for all taxpayers in Wisconsin - something Steve Kagen has not done.

This is not the first time Democrats have tried to misrepresent the meaning of the Pledge. During the special election in HI-01, the DCCC ran misleading attack ads against the Pledge. FactCheck.org, a non-partisan "consumer advocate" for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics, responded by condemning the DCCC and agreeing that the ads were “blatantly false.”

Similar claims about the Pledge were made recently in Michigan, Nevada, and Washington. In Michigan, the Jackson Citizen-Patriot, a Jackson, Michigan newspaper, deemed Rep. Mark Schauer’s claims about the Taxpayer Protection Pledge and Tim Walberg to be “not true.”  In Nevada, Jon Ralston of Face to Face “reality checked” the Dina Titus campaign ad and found the claims made against the “no new taxes” Pledge to be “thoroughly misleading.” King 5 TV in Washington called the accusations against the Pledge and senate candidate Dino Rossi to be a “stretch.”

“Why are Steve Kagen and the AFL-CIO going out of their way to shamelessly distort Reid Ribble’s position on taxes? The Pledge signed by Ribble is a promise to constituents and businesses to never raise taxes. Kagen has yet to make the same promise and should explain to voters how tax hikes revive a struggling economy and promote job growth in Wisconsin,” said ATR President Grover Norquist.

“Reid Ribble has committed to never raising taxes on his constituents while his Democrat opponent has left the door for tax hikes wide open,” continued Norquist.

Click here for the printable PDF of the release.

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight October 07, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Thursday, October 7th, 2010, 5:22 PM PERMALINK

ATR’s Adam Radman appears in PubliusForum.com highlighting Congressman Phil Hare’s desperate attempt to mislead voters about Bobby Schilling and the meaning of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.   “Rep. Phil Hare has attempted to distract voters from the important issues this election cycle: jobs and economic growth. Voters should demand to know from Rep. Hare just how tax hikes on individuals and/or businesses create jobs. In fact, voters should also ask him why he left Washington before putting a stop to one of the largest tax hikes in U.S. History.”

The American Spectator’s Jim Antle wonders, “Somehow, I Don’t Think That’s What Grover Had In Mind.”  He continues, “Here in Massachusetts, I keep seeing these television commercials saying that Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker plans to outsource jobs. In fact, he has even signed a pledge to support tax breaks for outsourcing jobs… This is an awfully misleading representation of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge… Baker is pledging not to raise taxes rather than pledging to ship your job to India.”

In National Review, Dick Morris and Eileen McGann highlight how once again… It’s the economy stupid! “It is fiscal and economic purity that rules the day. Anyone who voted for cap-and-trade is targeted in the primary. And there is no place for a candidate who ever backed a tax increase. Every candidate has to sign the no-tax pledge that Grover Norquist formulated for Americans for Tax Reform.Where Republican politicians were once terrified to move to the left on social issues, they are now more frightened of retribution for departures from fiscal orthodoxy.”

Also appearing in National Review, Phil Kerpen warns of looming Social Security tax hikes during the lame-duck session. “An analysis by Americans for Tax Reform found that the 'balance' favored by commission members Erskine Bowles and Judd Gregg would include an astonishing $26.7 trillion tax hike, a crushing blow to economic growth and the largest expansion of government in history. It makes the fight over the Bush tax cuts look like peanuts.”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight October 06, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Wednesday, October 6th, 2010, 5:05 PM PERMALINK

In the Boston Herald, Holly Robichaud the Lone Republican declares, “No Truth in Advertising.”  She continues, “Explain to me how pledging not to raise taxes sends jobs overseas.  What am I talking about?  Democrats are running an attack ad against Charlie Baker criticizing him for signing the No New Taxes pledge.  They say by signing the pledge he is sending jobs overseas.  I am not joking.  That’s right according to the Democrats keeping taxes low sends jobs abroad.”

A blogger in HotAir.com’s The Green Room takes on the Bangor Daily News’s assertion that Obama’s January, 2011 tax-hike is no tax-hike at all.  “Those who write editorials like this have no idea how badly they debase a profession our founders held in such esteem. They have become more invested in protecting an ideology than pursuing the ideal that the founders intended for their field… And the worst part? They’re doing so willingly. Consider this: journalists in Soviet Russia had to be coerced into protecting the regime.”

Long-time ATR friend and ally Chris Freind writes, “In Defense of the Tea Party” in The Philly Post.  “Despite headlines that Tea Party candidates and their supporters are radical and extremist, the truth is that most rank-and-file Tea Partiers simply advocate adhering to the Republican platform… In most cases, when a Tea Party candidate loses a primary, he works within the framework of the Party to ensure a Republican victory… But the same cannot be said of the Establishment types who believe more in coronations than elections.”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight October 05, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Tuesday, October 5th, 2010, 2:35 PM PERMALINK

National Review Online reports, “A State Income Tax for Washington?”   From the article: “Joshua Culling, state-affairs manager for Americans for Tax Reform, said I-1098 would mirror the negative economic impact of allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire on the wealthiest earners… If the initiative passes and the Bush tax cuts are allowed to expire, Culling says, Washington taxpayers — including many small businesses — would be hit with a ‘taxation double whammy’ that would seriously harm the state’s economy and prompt many state-based businesses to seek more favorable tax environments in other states.”

“Thirsting for a sip of the amazing American brew” is the lead story in The Australian.  Janet Albrechtsen hopes that Grover Norquist’s recent visit down under inspires Australians to reshape the Liberal Party much like the Tea Party has done with the GOP.  “If only it could move across the Pacific Ocean…Tea Party anger is fuelling a return to commonsense ideas about cutting spending and reducing the size of government… Someone please spike the drinks at Liberal Party HQ with this fine imported brew. Had the Liberals finessed their message along similar lines before the August election, they may have picked up seats they should have won to take government. Maybe they're learning for next time.”

Oh! The horror!  From The Washington Times: “Uh-oh. Night of the Living TARP could be upon us. While fans of the $700 billion bank bailout celebrated the ‘end’ of TARP in recent days, taxpayers are not off the hook yet. The program intended to rescue financial entities deemed "too big to fail" has itself become a costly behemoth… ‘What TARP did was tell financial institutions - and later, other enterprises, such as the auto industry - that taxpayers will fund risks the private market refused to sustain,’ sighs Grover Norquist, president of the aforementioned ATR. ‘TARP is a state-sponsored vampire: It sucks the lifeblood from taxpayers to reward bad behavior. This Halloween, Americans have more to fear than goblins and ghosts.’”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight October 01, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Friday, October 1st, 2010, 4:17 PM PERMALINK

Grover Norquist appears in Hawaii Free Press and warns “100 days to largest tax hike in history.”  He notes, “It looks like Congress is going to scamper out of Washington, D.C. having done nothing to stop the largest tax hikes in history. In just 100 days, you will be paying higher taxes than you have in over a decade.  What does this mean for you, for your family, for your small business? If you pay taxes, your taxes are going up. Even the lowest tax rate will rise from 10 to 15 percent.  Everybody's tax rate is going up, from the kid with a lemonade stand clear up to Warren Buffett.”

Peggy Noonan writes of “The Twister of 2010” in The Wall Street Journal.  The tumultuous primaries and surging Tea Party candidates have left Democrats scrambling.  “The Democrats have begun what Grover Norquist predicted a month ago. They saved their money for the end of the campaign and have begun running negative ads… They are avoiding the subject of their own votes on health care… They are focusing instead on accusations of personal scandal…At this point in history, with America teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, negative advertising is even more destructive, more actually wicked, than it was in the past.”

Check out Grover Norquist’s interview with Ross Greenwood on 2GB Radio in Australia and his appearance on Australia Broadcasting Corporation’s Lateline.   

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight September 30, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Thursday, September 30th, 2010, 5:13 PM PERMALINK

Grover Norquist appears in the Financial Times warning that, “Republicans can still fail to triumph.”  Despite the record unpopularity of the Democrats in Washington, Norquist reminds us that, “…the election is not today. It is on November 2. And while it is too late for Democrats to escape a drubbing, there is still time for them to claw back lost ground. Distractions are especially dangerous because Republicans are riding a wave of national anger at government spending. This is seen by voters as not simply wasteful, but threatening to our economy and indeed the republic. No Democrat should be able to avoid responsibility for the failed stimulus, bank bail-outs, or coming spending on healthcare or energy taxes.”

From Chip Hanlon’s RedCounty.com, “Wham! Americans for Tax Reform SLAMS Abel Maldonado.” According to Hanlon: “One thing no California conservative should stand for is watching Abel Maldonado cast himself as some sort of taxpayer advocate. When I saw him touting the 'hero of the taxpayer' award that was once bestowed upon him by Americans for Tax Reform, I figured that had to have been a lifetime ago--and that ATR's opinion of him had likely changed a great deal over time… So I gave them a call… ‘Politicians like Abel Maldonado are the reason why the CA legislature’s approval rating is at its lowest point in history,' said Patrick Gleason, ATR's Director of State Affairs… ‘We have nothing good to say about the guy.’ ”

In The Baltimore Sun a reader responds, “Andy Harris won’t raise taxes.”  The reader has some stern words for Rep. Frank Kratovil and his claim that Sen. Andy Harris intends to implement a 23 percent national sales tax, “Mr. Harris has made it clear that he is dead set against raising taxes of any kind, and his voting record proves it. Please look it up for yourself. He has steadfastly voted against higher taxes for the past 12 years as a Maryland state senator… Has Frank Kratovil signed the Americans for Tax Reform's Taxpayer Protection Pledge? Andy Harris has, and we can expect that he will be true to his pledge to oppose any and all tax increases.”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight September 28, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Tuesday, September 28th, 2010, 4:30 PM PERMALINK

ATR’s own Patrick Gleason asks in The Daily Caller, “What’s the matter with Pennsylvania Republicans?”  He notes, “Republican candidates for federal and state office across the country are espousing low taxes, limited government and free-market principles… yet in the Pennsylvania Senate, the only state legislative chamber controlled by the GOP in the northeast, the Republican majority is busy mucking up the message… lawmakers returned to the state capitol in Harrisburg this past week to pass a new tax on natural gas companies, the state’s most promising industry when it comes to job creation.”

Paul Jacob reveals his “10 Measures to Watch” in Townhall Magazine Jacob notes, “As Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, points out, ‘One big difference between initiatives and elected representatives is that initiatives do not change their minds once you vote them in.’ ”

On September 16th, Grover Norquist and Patrick Gleason wrote about the damage that a new energy tax would inflict upon an already struggling Pennsylvanian economy.  They argued, “Where many now see jobs and economic growth, Rendell… sees a politically easy target to shake down. He has been calling for a new severance tax on natural gas from the Marcellus Shale… This unwise tax would reduce job creation and hamstring a fledgling industry before it has had a chance to realize its full potential for the commonwealth.”  Governor Rendell has responded in Politico and once again misses the point.  He continues to choose to line the states pockets over providing the people of Pennsylvania with jobs.

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight September 24, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Friday, September 24th, 2010, 2:55 PM PERMALINK

ATR friend and ally, Chris Freind writes in Philly Mag’s ‘The Philly Post’, “After 50 Years in Politics, Mike Castle Had to Go.”  He continues, “Can O’Donnell win? Certainly. Will she? Impossible to answer, since the next seven weeks is equivalent to a political lifetime. But now that Democrat Mike Castle is finally out of the picture, at least Delaware voters have a clear choice on Election Day.”

Grover Norquist appears in The American Spectator with “Contract Negotiations.”  He writes, “A political contract between a chastened Republican Party and the American people will lead to Republican wins in 2010, but more importantly will force those same Republicans to govern the same  way they campaigned on the spending issue.”

From the FreindlyFireZone.com, “Tierney and the Teamsters? God Help Us.”  ATR friend and ally, Chris Freind appears again, this time taking on Big Labor and the greed that has run the Teamsters into the ground.  “Bottom line: the Teamsters’ leadership needs a reality check… Just as important, the unions who publicly lambasted the Teamsters should be commended for their courage.  Management and Labor will always have their disputes, but as long as the ultimate goal on both sides is continued employment and growth, common-sense agreements can always be reached.”

Ryan Ellis, ATR tax policy director, blasts Congressional Democrats in The Washington Times.  “The U.S. House of Representatives is poised this week to send H.R. 5297 to President Obama's desk. It's a mixture of small tax breaks and tax increases, but one of the latter demonstrates how tone-deaf congressional Democrats have become. The tax increase in question imposes a new paperwork-filing burden on the 10 million homeowners who rent out their second homes - "landlords," to use the preferred derogatory nomenclature of the left. Starting in about 100 days, homeowners will have to issue 1099-MISC forms to any person or unincorporated firm with which they do at least $600 in business over the course of the year.”

In Human Events, Grover Norquist reviews Erick Erickson and Lewis K. Uhler’s new book, Red State Uprising.  “Erickson and Uhler have written an informed and informative book subtitled ‘How to Take Back America,’ that speaks to the Tea Party movement: how it came about, what it has accomplished and, importantly, what it can and should do in the future and what pitfalls to avoid. It is full of good history, incisive political analysis and sound policy prescriptions.”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight September 21, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Tuesday, September 21st, 2010, 2:45 PM PERMALINK

“Keep It Real Conservatives,” says Grover Norquist on FoxNews.com.  The president of Americans for Tax Reform warns conservatives not to get complacent or distracted, “If we work hard, harder and hardest then today’s cheerful polling data can be the harbinger of victory when real votes by real people are counted on November 2… Too much government spending is killing jobs, businesses, clouding our economic future… And new issues give Democrats an opportunity to separate themselves from the unpopular Obama, Reid and Pelosi.”

ATR’s own Kelly William Cobb appears in The Washington Times with the op-ed: “Island Internet plugs into political favors.”  Despite having only a few thousand customers, Sandwich Isles Communications Inc., receives a generous government subsidy with taxpayer dollars.  Cobb exposes the corruption: “A congressional report last year labeled Sandwich Isles as one of the largest abusers of USF funding, accepting as much as $26.4 million in 2008 to connect just 1,967 households to the Internet. That's a whopping $13,408 in subsidies for each home. In 2009, the company raked in another $24 million.”

In Alaska, Libertarian gubernatorial candidate William Toien challenged the Democrat candidate Ethan Berkowitz to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge during a live debate. According to the AnchorageDaily News, “He [Toien] pulled out a copy of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, promising to oppose all tax increases, and signed it with a flourish. [Sean] Parnell [the Republican candidate and incumbent governor] said he had already signed one. Toien asked Berkowitz to sign too. The crowd hooted and clapped… ‘Not today,’ the Democrat said…”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments

Daily Media Spotlight September 20, 2010

Posted by Will Upton on Monday, September 20th, 2010, 4:00 PM PERMALINK

The National Journal asks “How To Put Businesses' Cash Reserves In Play? The Federal Reserve confirmed on Friday that corporate America is still quietly sitting on $1.8 trillion in unspent cash and assets.”  Grover Norquist responds: “Is this a trick question? Why would someone with $1.8 trillion or $1800 not want to invest in today’s economy? Several reasons: Barack Obama. Harry Reid. Nancy Pelosi. Barney Frank.”

ATR’s Chris Prandoni appears in The Daily Caller and offers us a great breakdown of the partisan proxy battle waged between Republicans and Democrats over the 1099 report requirements for small businesses and how that reflects the greater ideologies of both parties when it comes to taxes and the American economy. 

Liberty.com highlights Grover Norquist’s response to President Obama’s recent speech on the economy in Cleveland,Ohio: “After battering the American economy with overspending for almost two years, Obama has decided to fix everything –with more spending… In year one Obama, Reid and Pelsosi wasted trillions of taxpayers’ money and the economy lost jobs.  In year two, Obama, Reid and Pelosi have a new strategy … same as the old failed one … spend more of other people’s money.” Check out Grover’s full response and others here

From SafeHaven.com, the financial blogger The Mogambo Guru highlights “Cost of Government Day” adding that, “ ‘Just two years ago, Cost of Government Day fell an astonishing 34 days earlier,’ which is a tax increase of 17.3% in two years! …A lot of this is due to, as USA Today reported Aug. 10 and The Washington Times reminds us, that ‘federal pay and benefits per employee now average more than twice that of private workers: $123,049 compared to $61,051.’ …An interesting sidebar is that ‘Federal salaries outpaced inflation in the past decade by 33 percent.’ ”

More from Americans for Tax Reform

Top Comments