Adam Radman

Honolulu City Councilman Charles Djou Signs Taxpayer Protection Pledge for Congressional Race


Posted by Adam Radman on Friday, July 24th, 2009, 1:00 PM PERMALINK

Councilman Charles Djou recently became the first candidate in Hawaii's First Congressional Distrct race to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. Taxpayers in Hawaii should already be quite familiar with Djou and his pro-taxpayer stances as he previously signed the Pledge as a city councilman.

Djou is considered by many to be a highly touted prospect by the NRCC. They’ve already enlisted him in their Young Guns Program, where he is listed as an “On the Radar” candidate.
 
While Neil Abercrombie has been in office since 1991, Cook Political Report ranks this race as only “Likely D” with a PVI of D+11 and CQ Politics ranks the race as “Leans D.”
 
To see ATR’s official statement on signing the Pledge, click “read more.”
 
Charles Djou (R-Hawaii.) signs the Taxpayer Protection Pledge
Congressional candidate promises to protect taxpayers’ wallets
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Charles Djou, a Republican running in Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional district, recently signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). 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.”
 
ATR has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal office since 1987. To date, 34 U.S. senators and 172 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Pledge. Additionally, seven Governors and over 1,100 state legislators have signed the Pledge.
 
“After the passage of the so-called “Stimulus Package” better known as the Pelosi-Obama-Reid Spending Give-Away, Americans are desperately searching for candidates and politicians that will protect their livelihoods and put their wallets ahead of the federal government’s coffers ,” said Grover Norquist, president of ATR.
 
“By signing the Pledge, Charles Djou demonstrates that he understands the problems of hard-working taxpayers nationwide, but especially the taxpayers in Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional district.”
 
“I challenge all candidates for federal office to make the same commitment to taxpayers by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge today,” Norquist continued.

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Taxpayer Protection Pledge Puts Democrat Signers at Odds with Their Caucus's Health Care Bill


Posted by Adam Radman on Thursday, July 23rd, 2009, 4:31 PM PERMALINK

On Monday, The Hill published a piece on how the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is affecting some of its signatories in the context of the House Democrat Health Care Bill. Rep. Robert Andrews (NJ) and three other House Democrats have signed the Pledge including Reps. Ben Chandler (KY), Brad Ellsworth (IN), and Gene Taylor (MS).

Andrews signed the Pledge back in January of 1995, which commits signers to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses...”
 
The Hill reports that Rep. Andrews is trying to escape the promise he made to his constituents. Andrews claimed to have previously signed the Pledge but felt he should no longer be bound by it because Congress needs to impose new taxes to “raise money [to pay] for healthcare.” His constituents should know that in 2007 and 2008 Andrews repeatedly violated that promise by voting for H.R. 6, H.R. 2419, and H.R. 3996, and H.R. 2642. So this isn't the first time that he's felt the need to ignore his promise to taxpayers.
 
The Hill also contacted Rep. Chandler and Taylor for this story. While Rep. Chandler did not comment, Rep. Taylor cautiously came out against tax increases in the healthcare bill saying, “We can’t afford the promises that we have already made. Between the prescription drug benefit and the Medicare trust fund running out in the next seven years, I don’t think we need to make more promises until we can figure out how we are going to pay for the ones we have already made.”

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July 4th Tea Party Fact Sheet


Posted by Adam Radman on Thursday, July 2nd, 2009, 3:23 PM PERMALINK

As taxpayers gather in celebration of American Independence, ATR compiled a brief fact sheet on the federal government and the economy.

Number of employees at the IRS in FY 2010: Over 100,000 

Current IRS Budget: $11.4 billion

How many words does the IRS Code contain? The IRS Code is more than 3.4 million words

How many hours did individual taxpayers spend complying with income tax laws in 2009? Individual taxpayers alone spent an estimated 3.8 billion hours complying with various tax laws. This is up from 3.6 billion in 2008.

What is the origin of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)? The IRS dates back to President Lincoln when he created the position of commissioner of the Internal Revenue and enacted an income tax during the Civil War. The income tax was repealed ten years later.

When was the U.S. Constitution amended to include the 16th Amendment? Wyoming ratified the 16th Amendment in 1913 providing the necessary majority of states to amend the Constitution. The first form 1040 appeared the same year.

When is the Cost of Government Day (COGD)? In 2001, Americans finished paying off their share of the total cost of government on July 5th. Due to bailouts, the Stimulus Package, and President Obama’s budget, Americans will finish paying off their share of the cost of government somewhere between August 9 and August 19th. To read more about COGD, visit ATR’s Center for Fiscal Accountability.
 
How much more has President Obama increased spending over other Presidents? The 40 year average for federal spending as a percentage of GDP is 20.7%. Looking at President Obama’s budget, federal spending will account for 28.7% of GDP this year.

Are there any new taxes in President Obama’s proposed budget? President Obama's Budget contains over $1 trillion in tax increases.

How much would President Obama’s Cap and Trade tax cost Americans? It would cost each American family up to $3,100 in new energy taxes a year.

How many members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge? How many U.S. Senators? 172 members of the U.S. House and 34 members of the U.S. Senate have signed the Pledge never to raise income taxes.

How many state legislators have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge? There are 1,113 Pledge signers on the state level. 

Hours between releasing final version of “stimulus” bill and its passage: 16
 
Hours between releasing final version of “cap-and-trade” bill and its passage: 17
 
Number of members of Congress who read the stimulus bill before voting for it: Zero.
 
Number of Members of the House who read the “cap-and-trade” bill before voting for it: Zero. 

Have Congressional leaders committed to providing taxpayers with more time to read the health care reform bill? Not according to Speaker Pelosi.

 

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July 2nd Sioux Falls, SD Tea Party Rally Will Be Broadcast on Dish Network


Posted by Adam Radman on Wednesday, July 1st, 2009, 5:17 PM PERMALINK

The Tea Party Patriots recently announced that the Sioux Falls Stop Socialized Medicine Rally will be broadcast on the Dish Network channel 9612, starting at 8pm EDT.

Here are the event details:
Date: Thursday, July 2nd
Time: 12:30pm-4pm
Location: Sioux Falls Fair Grounds
GrandStand
West 12th to Lyons St., Turn North 

For more information on the events, check out these fliers (here and here).
 
I’d love to post some photos from the event on the ATR site. Please email any photos from the event to ideas@atr.org.

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Going Green with a National Energy Tax


Posted by Adam Radman on Monday, June 29th, 2009, 1:47 PM PERMALINK

 The Waxman-Markey Bill may be nothing to smile about, but this video from the Tax Foundation offers some laughs while explaining "Cap and Trade." 

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Tim Gobble Signs Taxpayer Protection Pledge for TN-03 Race


Posted by Adam Radman on Friday, June 19th, 2009, 11:48 AM PERMALINK

Sheriff Tim Gobble recently became the first candidate in Tennessee’s third congressional district to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. According to Politics1, there are eight other candidates running in the Republican primary to replace Rep. Zach Wamp (R), who is retiring from Congress to run for governor. 

After announcing that he had signed the Pledge, Gobble said, “I have a record of holding the line on tax increases. As a member of Congress, I will support fiscal responsibility and oppose initiatives that create an undue tax burden on the American people. We are taxed enough already.”
 
Cook Political Report ranks TN-03 as R+13 on the Partisan Voter Index (PVI). Barring any unforeseen events, the winner of the Republican primary appears to be the likely winner in the general election.
 
To see ATR’s official release on Sheriff Gobble signing the Pledge, click “read more.”
 
Tim Gobble (R-Tenn.) signs the Taxpayer Protection Pledge
Congressional candidate promises to protect taxpayers’ wallets
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tim Gobble, a Republican running in Tennessee’s 3rd Congressional seat, recently signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). 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.”
 
ATR has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal office since 1987. To date, 35 U.S. senators and 172 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Pledge. Additionally, seven Governors and over 1,100 state legislators have signed the Pledge.
 
“After the passage of the so-called “Stimulus Package,” better known as the Pelosi-Obama-Reid Spending Give-Away, Americans are desperately searching for candidates and politicians that will protect their livelihoods and put their wallets ahead of the federal government’s coffers,” said Grover Norquist, president of ATR.
 
“By signing the Pledge, Tim Gobble demonstrates that he understands the problems of hard-working taxpayers nationwide, but especially the taxpayers of Tennessee’s 3rd district.”
 
“I challenge all candidates for federal office to make the same commitment to taxpayers by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge today,” Norquist continued.
 
Copies of the Pledge are available at www.atr.org or by calling (122) 785-0266. 

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FCC and Senate Look to Cripple Cell Phone Users


Posted by Adam Radman on Thursday, June 18th, 2009, 11:29 AM PERMALINK

Chris Butler, ATR’s Chief of Staff, wrote a piece that appeared on NRO”s The Corner yesterday explaining the dangers of the FCC and the U.S. Senate creating new regulations that interfere with the private contracts between providers and manufacturers.

The rapid technological advances in mobile technology are due in large part to the funding provided by exclusivity agreements.

 
Check out the “read more” section for Chris’ entire piece from The Corner.
 
FCC and Senate Flirting with Crippling Cell-Phone Regulation
 
If you like the frantic pace of technological development in the wireless arena, and fierce free-market competition between the iPhone, the new Palm Pre, and Research In Motion’s Blackberry, you should be concerned by the prospect of new FCC regulations.

Thanks to rapid technological advances, mobile phones are turning into handheld computers with more power than desktop PCs had just a few years ago. While consumers love the multiplying choices and the technological leaps, many don’t understand how they get funded.

The most important developments in mobile technology have required creative funding streams that have necessitated carrier exclusivity agreements. For example, the iPhone’s “natural” cost would be well north of $600, were Apple not able to create a subsidy for purchasers through an exclusive partnership with AT&T.

Exclusive and exciting technology generates more subscribers to the carrier, which allows it to subsidize the technology on the front end. Further, exclusivity creates incentives for new phones to be developed in partnership with competing carriers. (Case in point: the Palm Pre.)

Enter the dark clouds of FCC regulation. The Commission is set to determine whether these private contracts between providers and manufacturers are “anticompetitive” and “contrary to the public interest,” which would be a reversal of its own decision in 1992.  Unfortunately, the Senate seems eager for such a reversal; today the Commerce Committee is holding hearings on the subject.

These hearings, and subsequent FCC proceedings, could be a bellwether of how the Obama administration and Congress will handle telecom and technological issues. If they embrace heavy-handed, meddlesome regulation, that will bode ill for one of the U.S. economy’s few remaining growth areas.
 
— Chris Butler is chief of staff at Americans for Tax Reform.

 

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ATR and PRA File Comments on National Broadband Policy


Posted by Adam Radman on Tuesday, June 16th, 2009, 10:40 AM PERMALINK

Recently, Americans for Tax Reform responded to an FCC Notice of Inquiry on National Broadband Policy.

ATR primarily focused their comments on the long-term effects of governmental burden borne by Americans as a result of any broadband policy.
 
Private companies have invested over $850 billion in the last ten years to development viable broadband across the country. Private companies are expected to invest an additional $300 billion through 2012 if they believe they can recoup their investments. Clearly the free market is working.
 
Why would anyone believe the last, best bastion of the free market needs government intervention? Well, there are some that believe Americans are supposedly being impeded in their opportunities to receive broadband service. Only 4.5% of adults cite availability as the reason they do not subscribe to broadband. In fact, 62% of dial-up users are not even interested in giving up their current connection for broadband.
 
Click here to read all of ATR’s comments and here to see PRA’s comments on the issue.

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Tom Lucero Promises to Protect Colorado Taxpayers' Wallets


Posted by Adam Radman on Thursday, June 11th, 2009, 11:30 AM PERMALINK

Tom Lucero became the second candidate in Colorado’s 4th congressional district to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge today. Lucero is currently University of Colorado Regent. According to their website, the board is charged constitutionally with the general supervision of the University and the exclusive control and direction of all funds of and appropriations to the University, unless otherwise provided by law.

Politics1 reports two other Republicans are currently in the race: Cory Gardner, Pledge Signer and State House Minority Whip, and Diggs Brown, Fort Collins City Councilman and Afghan War Veteran.
 
To see ATR’s official statement on Lucero signing the Pledge, click “read more.”
 
Tom Lucero (R-Colo.) signs the Taxpayer Protection Pledge
Congressional candidate promises to protect taxpayers’ wallets
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tom Lucero, a Republican running in Colorado’s 4th Congressional seat, recently signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). 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.”
 
ATR has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal office since 1987. To date, 35 U.S. senators and 172 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Pledge. Additionally, seven Governors and over 1,100 state legislators have signed the Pledge.
 
“After the passage of the so-called “Stimulus Package,” better known as the Pelosi-Obama-Reid Spending Give-Away, Americans are desperately searching for candidates and politicians that will protect their livelihoods and put their wallets ahead of the federal government’s coffers ,” said Grover Norquist, president of ATR.
 
“By signing the Pledge, Tom Lucero demonstrates that he understands the problems of hard-working taxpayers nationwide, but especially the taxpayers of Colorado’s 4th district.”
 
“I challenge all candidates for federal office to make the same commitment to taxpayers by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge today,” Norquist continued.
 
Copies of the Pledge are available at www.atr.org or by calling (122) 785-0266.

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Dr. Rand Paul Signs Taxpayer Protection Pledge for U.S. Senate Race in Kentucky


Posted by Adam Radman on Thursday, June 11th, 2009, 10:30 AM PERMALINK

Kentucky taxpayers should be excited to learn that Dr. Rand Paul recently signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge for his U.S. Senate race. While currently working as an eye doctor, Dr. Paul also runs Kentucky Taxpayers United- a group that actively promotes the Taxpayer Protection Pledge throughout the state.

According to his website, Dr. Paul’s signing of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is a momentous occasion for his campaign. It constitutes an opportunity to reinforce Rand Paul’s promise to Kentucky voters that he will protect their freedom and personal liberties with every decision he makes and every vote that he casts.
 
Dr. Paul was endorsed by his father Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), another Taxpayer Protection Pledge signer on June 4th, 2009.
 
To see ATR’s official press statement on Dr. Paul signing the Pledge, click “read more.”
 
Rand Paul (R-Ky.) signs the Taxpayer Protection Pledge
U.S. Senate candidate promises to protect the family budget by signing “No New Tax” Pledge
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rand Paul, a Republican running for Kentucky’s U.S. Senate seat, recently signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). 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.”
 
ATR has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal office since 1987. To date, 34 U.S. senators, and 172 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed the Pledge. Additionally, six Governors and over 1,100 state legislators have signed the Pledge.
 
“American taxpayers need candidates that understand the financial issues facing the U.S. today,” said Grover Norquist, president of ATR.
 
“By signing the Pledge, Rand Paul shows hardworking families that he understands that letting them keep more of their money is not only good for the family budget but good for the economy as well.”
 
“I strongly encourage every candidate for federal and state office to sign the Pledge,”
Norquist continued.

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