April 16, 2011- One of the most important ideological commitments of the modern conservative movement is an opposition to tax increases. It is with this ideology that then-Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Scott Walker signed Americans For Tax Reforms’ “Taxpayer Protection Pledge,” a vow not to raise taxes on the people of his state.
Yet in his newly proposed budget, now-governor Walker appears to have already broken this pledge. While the budget would lower taxes overall — it includes $83.3 million in tax cuts “primarily for businesses and investors” — it would make up for lost revenue by eliminating tax credits and exemptions that primarily benefit the poor and even some in the middle class.
Wisconsin’s Legislative Fiscal Bureau — the state’s equivalent of the Congressional Budget Office — finds that this would amount to a $49.9 million tax increase on people who receive these credits over the next two years:
Low and middle income people would lose tax credits worth about $49.4 million over two years, the new Legislative Fiscal Bureau report said.
Those affected most by Walker’s proposal would include low-income families who qualify for the earned income tax credit program, and low-income homeowners who receive tax rebates under the homestead tax credit.