As Wisconsin primary voters head to the voting booth in the August 9 primary, for which early voting has already begun, they deserve to know where their candidates stand on crucial issues such as taxes and spending. Fortunately for Wisconsin voters, Kleefisch has made a written commitment to oppose all net tax hikes. Unfortunately for Wisconsin taxpayers, the other candidates in the race, Tim Michels and Timothy Ramthun, have not made this same commitment.
During a July 27 radio debate, Tim Michels was asked why he hasn’t joined Rebecca Kleefisch in signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which has been signed by Governors Ron DeSantis, Kim Reynolds, Kristi Noem, Greg Abbott, and most incumbent GOP governors. Rather than explain why he didn’t want to make that same commitment to Wisconsin taxpayers—that he would not veto a net tax increase if elected—Tim Michels instead chose to lob an ad hominem at Americans for Tax Reform.
It’s understandable that Michels would want to duck that question. The fact is, if Tim Michels wins the nomination on August 9, Wisconsin voters’ only option for governor this November would be two candidates who are both open to tax hikes. If Kleefisch instead prevails on August 9, there would be a greater contrast between the Republican nominee and Governor Tony Evers (D) on fiscal policy, with Evers being the only candidate in the race open to raising taxes next year or in the three that follow.
Americans for Tax Reform offers the Pledge to all candidates for state and federal office. 16 governors and over 1,000 state legislators have signed the Pledge, committing to support and preserve American economic liberty and prosperity in opposing all tax increases.
“Wisconsin voters are looking for solutions that get Americans back to work and grow the economy. Signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge and holding the line on taxes is the first step in that process,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform.
In addition to being the sole Pledge signer in the primary, Kleefisch has also been the most transparent with her criticisms of the current tax code and her intended reforms. She has cited the $5 billion surplus as proof that the state is squeezing too much from the taxpayer and has proposed moving the state to a flat rate of 3.54%—the Badger State currently imposes a graduated income tax with a top rate of 7.65%.
The winner of the August 9 primary will face off against incumbent Governor Evers, who has proposed billions of dollars in tax hikes over the course of his term as highlighted by the MacIver Institute, a Wisconsin-based think tank. Luckily, fiscally conscious Wisconsin voters can trust that they have a champion in Rebecca Kleefisch, who has put her commitment to the taxpayer in writing.
The Taxpayer Protection Pledge is a written commitment by an elected official or candidate to the voters of his or her state to oppose any tax increase. Americans for Tax Reform has offered the Pledge to all candidates for federal and state office since 1986. For the most up-to-date information on this race or any other, please visit the ATR Pledge Database.