With states across the country facing budgets swimming in red ink, the Keystone State is providing leadership by showing the rest of the country how to balance a budget without raising taxes. This week Gov. Tom Corbett released his inaugural budget, which closes an estimated $5 billion budget gap without relying on higher taxes.
With this tax-hike-free budget, Gov. Corbett is upholding the central commitment he made to Pennsylvania voters on the campaign trail to oppose any and all efforts to raise taxes. In his budget address yesterday, Gov. Corbett stated that “One: We have to Spend Less. Because we have less to spend. Two: We must tax no more. Because the people have no more to give.”
“What a difference a year makes. For the last eight years, under Gov. Rendell, Pennsylvanians faced the threat of annual tax hikes,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “Elections have consequences. As a result of the wise decision made by Pennsylvanians last November, they now have a chief executive who is forcing the state to live within its means, just as Pennsylvania families must do.”
With this budget, Gov. Corbett joins his GOP counterparts in other states – such as Govs. Walker, Perry, Kasich, and Christie – who are bringing expenditures in line with revenues and shunning tax increases. As The Wall Street Journal highlighted today, the contrast between Republican and Democratic governors on the subject of taxes has never been so stark as it is today. As it stands, Democratic Govs. Jerry Brown, Pat Quinn, Mark Dayton, and Dan Malloy are presently the only governors in the country that believe now is a good time to raise taxes.
“Gov. Corbett has a lot of work to do to clean up the mess left by his predecessor, but this is an excellent first step,” added Norquist. “The good news for Pennsylvania taxpayers is that it is a new day in Harrisburg. Gov. Corbett heard the message sent by voters in November and has seen the numbers. He recognizes that the state doesn’t tax too little, but instead spends too much. After the last eight years of Rendell’s profligacy, we now have a responsible adult in the Governor’s mansion."