by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Most of the attention so far has understandably been focused on the battle for control of Congress. …
… Often overlooked, however, will be several important ballot measures that could have a far more direct impact on people’s lives than the high-profile races that receive all the news coverage.
For instance, despite President Trump’s bizarre assertion that Congress will pass a middle-class tax cut in the next two weeks, congressional action on taxes is not happening any time soon. But in six states, voters will have the opportunity to cap, limit, or restrict taxes.
Arizona voters will consider whether to prohibit new or increased taxes on real-estate transactions, banking, investment management, health care, and other services.
In Florida, voters will vote on two anti-tax measures. The first would make permanent a 10 percent cap on property taxes that is currently set to expire next year. The second would require a two-thirds supermajority in both chambers of the legislature to raise taxes.
Oregon voters will also have the chance to impose a supermajority requirement for new taxes, in this case, three-fifths rather than two-thirds. What’s more, Oregonians will vote on whether to prohibit both state and local governments from taxing groceries. A similar ban on grocery taxes (applying to just local governments) will also be on the ballot in Washington.
In North Carolina, voters will decide whether to cut the top state-income-tax rate from 10 to 7 percent. Even in the liberal bastion of California, voters will choose whether to require public approval of any future increase in gas taxes or vehicle fees.