Washington State overwhelmingly votes down new tax on wealthy
Posted by iusbvision on November 5, 2010
Even Microsoft opposed it. Gotta love the irony.
The mega rich guys who supported this are big time hypocrite. As 5% means nothing to them and since much of their income is not in the form of taxable wages they would have been exempted from most of it anyways. The producer class though would have gotten soaked.
The truth is we need wealth. Wealth goes where it is treated well and in case you haven’t noticed it is being treated well in China. We have lost 14,000 factories in the last 10 years. We want wealth to come to our communities, not drive them away.
The plan devised by the father of the Microsoft Corp co-founder to slap a 5 percent tax on earnings over $200,000 — Initiative Measure 1098 — was rejected by 65 percent of voters, with almost two-thirds of precincts reported.
The result is a boon for the anti-tax Tea Party movement and suggests Americans may be in the mood to extend tax cuts introduced by former President George W. Bush even for the wealthiest citizens. It also signals that Americans are unwilling to accept higher taxes as a way of balancing state budgets ravaged by the recession.
It is a stinging defeat for Bill Gates senior, who put $600,000 of his own money behind the campaign and also for his son, the world’s second richest person, who let it be known he would vote for the measure.
The vote is the fourth failure to introduce a state tax in Washington in the last 70 years and leaves the state as one of only seven without one.
Although the new tax would have affected fewer than 70,000 people out of the state’s 6.7 million residents, an opposition campaign run by an organization called Defeat 1098 persuaded voters that the tax on the wealthy would be extended to lower earners.
Major backers of Defeat 1098 include Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, who contributed $425,000 to the campaign, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.
Microsoft, Boeing and Alaska Airlines, all major employers in the state, also contributed to the opposition campaign, fearing that a tax on high-earners would hurt their ability to lure talented workers to the state.
Texas Governor Rick Perry recently seized on the issue to invite top businesses in Washington state to relocate to Texas, which does not have an income tax.