Friday, November 05, 2010

Silver Lining

Mikaela says:

This American Life did a brilliant show asking and answering a bunch of my questions surrounding mid-term elections, looking at liberal and conservative machinations (or lack thereof).

(Especially Act III: Jack Hitt Goes to Washington - interviewing Democratic Party insider Paul Begala about whether Democrats have a VERY secret messaging strategy or whether they're just incompetent.)

One story included an interview with a die-hard conservative adamantly opposed to tax increases who found himself traveling Colorado to stump AGAINST the tax-cutting ballot propositions 60, 61, and 101, which would have cause perpetual budget crises for the state and caused businesses to flee.

They were all roundly defeated. There you have it! Good news from an abysmal election...

Colorado voters reject tax-cutting measures 60, 61, 101

Colorado voters overwhelmingly rejected three tax-cutting measures Tuesday, leading to a collective sigh of relief among government officials across the state who feared the passage of Amendments 60, 61 and Proposition 101 could have meant financial doom.

"Every local government and state government would have been reeling from the passage of those" measures, Boulder City Manager Jane Brautigam said. "It really would have been devastating to our community."

Proposition 101, a statutory change that would reduce vehicle taxes and fees and state income taxes, as well as eliminate telecommunication taxes, was failing statewide, with 68 percent of voters opposed.

Amendment 60, which would change the state constitution to require voters to approve all property-tax increases and would limit any new increases in property taxes to 10 years, was failing statewide, with 76 percent opposed.

Amendment 61 was another proposed constitutional amendment, which would prohibit the state from borrowing money and would place new restrictions on all types of borrowing for local governments. It was failing, with 73 percent opposed statewide.

"They just had to be stopped," Boulder City Councilman Matt Appelbaum said. "It would have destroyed us. It would have bankrupted the state."

Combined, the effects of the three measures on Boulder's budget were estimated to be between $26 million and $54 million within the next four years.

Mark Swanson, a Superior Democrat, said he voted against the measures and is glad so many others did, too.

"At some point, I think people have made a very common-sense judgment that some taxes are good taxes," he said.