North Carolinians have been hit hard by the Obama-Perdue economy. According to last Friday’s jobs report from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, 84 out of North Carolina’s 100 counties saw an increase in unemployment. The state unemployment rate remains at 9.4%, well above the still abysmal national average of 8.2%. This dim economic outlook for North Carolina makes Democratic gubernatorial candidate Walter Dalton’s recent proclamation that he is open to higher taxes even more egregious.

ATR noted Dalton’s statement last week:

“North Carolina Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, the NC Democratic Party’s nominee for governor, confirmed today what many voters in the Old North State already suspected: if elected, more job-killing tax increases will certainly be a possibility. 

This should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with Dalton's record. Walter Dalton has a long history of supporting tax hikes, even in the midst of a recession. He did so as a state Senator, as Lieutenant Governor, and now as a candidate for Governor.”

It's disconcerting that Walter Dalton wants to increase uncertainty for businesses and investors who are already forced to make contractionary preparations to cope with the massive federal tax increases scheduled for the end of this year with the expiration of the ‘01/’03 tax rates and the implementation of the 20 tax hikes in Obamacare.

Apparently Walter Dalton doesn’t think that’s enough, and wants to add the threat of higher state taxes to the mix. The fact that Dalton's top policy priority for 2012 has been lobbying for Bev Perdue's sales tax hike speaks volumes. That’s no way to attract businesses and the much-needed jobs they create to the Tar Heel State. Dalton’s approach is even more misguided in light of the fact that North Carolina’s neighbors in the region are moving in the opposite direction, making their states more economically competitive, both regionally and globally, by reducing tax rates and eliminating unnecessary and onerous regulations.

For footage of Dalton admitting his openness to job-killing tax increases, despite an incredibly weak economy, click here.