Sen. Nathan Dahm: "Where are the reforms?"

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In a Facebook post, Sen. Nathan Dahm has explained his reasons for opposing a massive tax increase to meet the current Oklahoma state budget shortfall.

This week I voted no one of the largest tax increases in state history. Why? Because I don't believe the answer to our state's budget woes is raising taxes.

Where are the reforms?

Every program that is currently being used as a bargaining chip with claims that the program will be eliminated could be fully funded WITHOUT raising taxes if reforms were made.

The majority of the legislature seems willing to raise almost half a billion dollars in taxes on nearly every single Oklahoman without passing any reforms.

Why is it that they will raise taxes on the oil & gas industry which creates tens of thousands of jobs in our state while at the same time cutting checks for tens of millions of dollars to subsidize the wind industry (and their dozens of jobs) every year?

Why is it that the entire state is forced to subsidize the Amtrak between OKC & Dallas? Why can't people pay the full price of a ticket? Why do people in Tulsa or the panhandle or Enid have to pay for others to take a joy ride to go shopping and spend their money (sales-tax free on certain items!) in Texas?

Why is it that the taxpayers had to subsidize over $4,000,000 to line the pockets of sleaze-ball Harvey Weinstein with his movie that made Oklahomans look backwards?

Why is it that we have to pay sales tax on groceries and necessities but not to buy a newspaper or magazine to read the fake news?

Why is it that state agencies can use taxpayer funds to foment raising taxes to take even more money from the taxpayers?

The reason is because those select few have extra influence at the Capitol. If you go after the newspaper carve out, they'll smear you for trying to eliminate freedom of the press (and they'll endorse your future opponent). If you go after the wind credits, they'll fund your opponent (tens of millions of dollars goes a long way in campaign contributions). And on and on it goes.

So what's the result? The state budget is balanced on the backs of average Oklahomans. Because the average joe doesn't have a huge force of lobbyists and government affairs directors canvassing the Capitol on their behalf. All they have is two people who are supposed to be fighting for them: their Representative and their Senator.

Our focus should not be on the next election, but on the next generation. Elected officials must remember the purpose for government as outlined in our Declaration of Independence: "that to secure these RIGHTS, governments are instituted among men, deriving their JUST powers from the consent of the governed."

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on November 9, 2017 12:41 PM.

St. Gregory's University closing in December was the previous entry in this blog.

Rep. Tom Gann: Set a tone of transparency, integrity is the next entry in this blog.

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