After cushy appointments in Oregon for GOP lawmakers who voted to hike taxes,ATR wants assurances that key Virginia Republicans aren\’t expecting rewards

WASHINGTON-Today in a stern letter to 27 Virginia Delegates and Senators, Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) President Grover Norquist asked for a public promise that no future paycheck is sweetening the appeal of hiking taxes on Virginians. ATR is concerned by surprising support coming from a group of Republicans in the statehouse, and is encouraging them to vow against profiting personally from any tax increase.

"We have seen what\’s happened elsewhere in the battle against higher taxes," said Norquist. "The pressure to fatten state coffers and interest groups can involve an implied reward, particularly if a legislator is worried about a primary. Virginia taxpayers deserve to know for sure that any surprising GOP support for this latest money-grab is entirely above the board "

In Oregon, after a recent contentious battle over a record tax hike, 16 Republican senators and representatives had to vote with Democrats for a tax increase in order to overcome Oregon\’s supermajority requirement. Six months later, Democratic Governor Ted Kulongoski, has appointed at least two of those tax-raising Republicans to high-paying jobs in his administration.

Critics charge that Gov. Kulongoski is making good on a pay-off he promised at the time of the tax vote. Legislators will get more than a big salary, because pension benefits are determined by the salary of their last years before retirement. These legislators will make thousands more each year for the rest of their lives.

In today\’s letter, Norquist asked the group of 27 legislators to publicly affirm that:

1.) No one has offered you a job, whether in government service, in education, or with a business interest benefited by the tax increase, and

2.) You will not accept, now or in the future, any job with any entity that benefited from the tax increase, or any entity that would appear to have benefited.

"If your only concern is for Virginia and not yourself: Prove it," said Norquist. "We will make sure your constituents know, either way."

Virginia Legislators Sent Today\’s Letter:


Harry Blevins (R-14)
John Chichester (R-28)
Emmet Hanger (R-24)
Charles Hawkins (R-19)
William Mims (R-33)
Thomas Norment (R-3)
Russell Potts (R-27)
Frederick Quayle (R-13)
Frank Ruff (R-15)
Kenneth Stolle (R-8)
Walter Stosch (R-12)
William Wampler (R-40)
John Watkins (R-10)


Preston Bryant (R-23)
Jim Dillard (R-41)
Phil Hamilton (R-93)
Robert Hurt (R-16)
Riley Ingram (R-62)
Chris Jones (R-76)
Daniel Marshall (R-14)
Harvey Morgan (R-98)
David Nutter (R-7)
Glenn Oder (R-94)
Robert Orrock (R-54)
Harry Parrish (R-50)
Thomas Rust (R-86)
Robert Tata (R-85)