"Had I had any idea that he would be embarking on raising taxes for Virginians, I would not have been there for him" - former Governor Douglas Wilder referring to Governor Warner, whom he endorsed in 2001.
"I will not raise taxes." - Candidate Mark Warner, October 10, 2001.
“What I believe the people of Virginia want is they want people who are going to keep their promises.” - Governor Mark Warner, March 25, 2003.
"Warner Opens Session With Call to Raise Taxes" - Frontpage Article Headline, Washington Post, January 15, 2004.
THE EVOLUTION OF MARK WARNER’S CAMPAIGN PROMISE NOT TO RAISE OUR TAXES
PHASE I: Mark Warner makes tax reform a centerpiece of his 2001 Gubernatorial campaign. He made a campaign “promise” to introduce a “comprehensive proposal to reform the state tax code no later than the 2003 General Assembly session” and said “it will take the Governor’s leadership to get the job done”. (Spring 2001)
PHASE II: Under pressure from his gubernatorial campaign opponent, Mark Warner seeks to reassure voters he will not raise our taxes: He stated that he was "Someone who understands that government has to live within its means. Someone who will not raise your taxes.” (October 2001)
PHASE III: Mark Warner is elected Governor of Virginia and prays every night that no one will hold him accountable for his campaign promises. (November 2001)
PHASE IV: Mark Warner pushes the Sales Tax Increase Referendum legislation through the 2002 General Assembly Session and the Referendums are placed on the November 2002 ballot in the Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads areas. (February 2002)
PHASE V: The voters of Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads overwhelmingly reject the Sales Tax Increase Referendums. (November 2002)
PHASE VI: Mark Warner sleeps through the 2003 General Assembly Session without introducing tax reform legislation as promised. (January - February 2003)
PHASE VII: After the 2003 General Assembly session adjourns, Mark Warner realizes he failed to keep his campaign promise, and pledges to pursue tax reform because he might be able to propose a back-door Tax Increase to fund his campaign promises. (February 2003)
PHASE VIII: Hoping Virginians might not pay attention, Mark Warner embarks on a public relations campaign to confuse the citizens on his tax reform plan. When challenged on whether this might be a Trojan horse for raising taxes, the Governor stated, "Absolutely not!". However, the Governor said he could not commit to revenue neutrality. (March - July 2003)
PHASE IX: When asked about the term “revenue neutral”, Mark Warner said “I’m not sure what that means.” (July 2003)
PHASE X: Mark Warner refuses to disclose his Tax Reform Plan until after the November elections, conceding that the voters would overwhelmingly reject calls for a Tax Increase. (Summer 2003)
PHASE XI: Mark Warner invites Legislators over to The Governor’s Mansion to make some “suggestions” for possible reforms such as raising the corporate tax, making the personal income tax fairer and applying the sales tax to additional goods and services. (Summer - Fall 2003)
PHASE XII: Mark Warner appoints a few select insiders to an “Informal Working Group” that refuses to meet in public and discuss the Governor’s Tax Plan. (Fall 2003)
PHASE XIII (and how unlucky for Virginians): Governor Warner introduces his "Tax Increase" plan in a media blitz across the Commonwealth. While Governor Warner wrapped his plan within the mantle of a broad Tax Reform package in his attempt to sell it to Virginians, it can be concluded that Governor Warner clearly does not understand "revenue neutrality" (see Phase IX above) and he has contradicted his own statements regarding a tax increase (see Phases II and VIII above). (November 2003) (LINK)
Hey Mark....We Remember!
Labels: Virginia Politics