Utah State Legislature Passes Resolutions Instructing Congress to Support President Bush

WASHINGTON – In December 2002, Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) sent eight different resolutions to all 99 state legislative bodies, asking state legislators to introduce resolutions supporting various parts of President Bush\’s agenda. Utah has been a particularly active and successful state, passing resolutions that call on Congress to permanently repeal the Death Tax, abolish the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), support President Bush\’s call for a national missile defense system as well as the President and his Administration regarding the potential war with Iraq.

"So often, United States Congressmen and Senators forget who they represent," explained taxpayer advocate Grover Norquist, who heads Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) in Washington. "The DC beltway is like a vacuum for legislators – they represent one thing in their state but do the complete opposite in DC." ATR is widely considered the nation\’s leading taxpayer advocacy organization.

The call to abolish the federal Alternative Minimum Tax passed the Utah House by a 50 to 12 margin, with six absent or not voting. The Senate passed the same resolution 21 to 6 with two absent. House Joint Resolution 13, which instructed Congress to permanently repeal the Death Tax, passed the House by 56-14 with five absent. The Senate passed the same resolution with a 22-4-3 outcome. "It is not surprising that Utah is in support of the President\’s tax cuts," continued Norquist, "and overall, Utah is well-represented in Washington."

The Utah legislature\’s support for President Bush\’s defense initiatives strengthens the congressional delegation\’s position in Washington. Both U.S. Senators and all three Congressmen supported H.J.R. 114, authorizing President Bush to use U.S. armed forces against Iraq. Utah\’s passage of the resolution calling for the deployment of a national missile defense system will help President Bush in his push for a strong military and a premium for national security here at home.

"Utah Reps. Morgan Philpot (R-45), Michael Morley (R-66), Craig Buttars (R-3) and Chad Bennion (R-44) have shown bold leadership and great success in earning bipartisan support for solid policy," Norquist said, "I expect the success of the Utah legislature will be contagious and that other states will follow suit."