The Republican-majority Kansas legislature last night declared a failure Gov. Sam Brownback’s tax-slashing route to prosperity begun in 2012. It completed an override of his veto of a bill to increase taxes and restore state support for ravaged public schools.
Here’s a quote from the Topeka newspaper’s coverage to clip and send to the likes of Arkansas Republican Rep. Charlie Collins, who’s SURE if we only cut taxes enough that prosperity will pour down on Arkansas like it did in Kansas.
“I don’t want to be disrespectful to the governor. He still believes in it. I don’t,” said Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning, an Overland Park Republican who voted for the 2012 law.
“It would have been much easier,” said Rep. Stan Frownfelter, D-Kansas City, “for me to vote for Senate Bill 30 if it had contained a full-fledged repeal of the governor’s tax cuts.”
Sen. Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, said the Legislature made a tragic decision four years ago to remove $750 million from the state’s income tax revenue and promise it would drive job growth. It made no sense to adopt a business-owner income tax exemption that granted 43 percent of the tax benefit to 0.67 percent of filers, Holland said.
“The so-called small businesses. I guess under that definition Georgia-Pacific is a small business,” said Holland, who ran for governor against Brownback in 2010. “I firmly believe this wasn’t about creating jobs. We should have got off this crazy train a long time ago.”
Semi-related: Donald Trump is talking up the virtue of “public-private partnerships” and outsourcing of government services. Another one for the clip and save file from a New York Times article on the glories of public-private partnerships (which I’ve always said means public provides the money, private interests reap tidy profits):
“There is a significant misunderstanding of the way public-private partnerships actually work,” said David Besanko, a professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. “Taxpayers or users are going to need to pay for private infrastructure just as they need to pay for public infrastructure. You’re going to need to get revenues from somewhere.”
Translation: There is no free lunch. Public pays. Maybe even more, counting the private profit margin.