May 19, 2013

Letters to the editor: Readers praise, pan tax plan

(Continued from page 2)

Of course, the leadership of the Democrats and the leadership of the Republicans don't like it. They are suffering from the "not invented here" mentality.

To be fair, each legislator can probably find one of her pet oxen getting gored by the proposal. I have one: the estate tax. Under the "Gang of 11" proposal, it's gone.

But you know what? In return for the immense advantages of the proposal, I'll forget I ever heard about a state estate tax. What's not to like here? It cuts the income tax to 4 percent. It reduces property taxes.

"Wait!" the liberals cry. "It taxes groceries!" That means when Martha Stewart buys 20 cases of shrimp for a party, she'll have to pay a sales tax! Meanwhile, the less well-off among us will get a sales tax credit to more than refund the extra sales tax they pay.

Finally, the proposal is budget-neutral. It raises about $700 million more revenue. It shifts the burden of paying taxes more to the sales tax, which means that our visitors pay more, and we who live here will pay less. What's not to like?

Now, the final boost: Grover Norquist doesn't like it! What better endorsement can one ask?

Please, rank-and-file Republicans and Democrats, pass this bill.

Sally Hinckley
South Portland

Chalmers "Chop" Hardenbergh


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