Now Claims He Is For It

WASHINGTON – Over the past five years the New Jersey legislature has raised taxes more than any other state in the country and the Garden State property tax burden continues to be the highest in the nation. As a result, polls consistently show New Jersey residents are fed up over taxes.

Seeking to get ahead of the curve, last week Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) introduced legislation allowing New Jersey homeowners to deduct their local property tax payments from federal income tax returns even if the taxpayer does not itemize on their federal tax returns. However, Menendez now claims to support a measure he has long opposed. As a State Assemblyman he actually voted to eliminate the local property tax deduction from state tax returns as part of the 1990 Florio tax increases.

“New Jersey taxpayers are outraged over their growing tax burden but they should not be fooled by Menendez’s disingenuous proposal,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “The best way to determine how a candidate will vote upon being elected is to examine the candidates’ record. And for his entire career Menendez has been on the wrong side of taxpayers. In fact, he is proposing a federal tax deduction that he eliminated at the state level.”

The flip-flop is just another addition to long list of contradictions that Candidate Menendez claims he is “for” after spending a lifetime voting “against” as an elected official. New Jersey has the highest percentage of taxpayers subject to the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT). Candidate Menendez claims he is against this tax yet Elected Official Menendez voted to raise the AMT tax rates in 1993 and has voted against every tax bill that increases the exemption amount in 2001, 2003, 2004, and 2006. Candidate Menendez claims he supports the per child tax credit, but he voted against the expansion of the child credit from $500 to $1,000 in 2001 and 2003 and then extending the $1,000 credit in 2004. Candidate Menendez claims he supports marriage penalty elimination but he voted against it in 2001 and 2003 and again the extension in 2004.

“It’s ironic that on every tax issue Menendez talks about during the campaign he has a long record of doing the exact opposite,” continued Norquist. “He voted to eliminate the local property tax deduction from state income tax returns, he voted to increase the Alternative Minimum Tax, and he voted to deny child credit and marriage penalty relief to working New Jersey families. Taxpayers should not be fooled after a long record of opposing their interests for so long.”