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New Campaign Shows How Gretchen Whitmer’s Policies Would Throw Michigan’s Economy Into Reverse

May 17, 2018 by AFP

Americans for Prosperity Launches Six-Figure Digital and Mail Campaign

Arlington, Va. – Americans for Prosperity today announced a six-figure digital and direct mail ad campaign in Michigan informing citizens about former State Senator Gretchen Whitmer’s long record of support for higher taxes and Governor Granholm’s failed economic agenda. The ad campaign asks voters to oppose Gretchen Whitmer for governor because her policies would relegate Michigan’s economy back to the days of the “lost decade” when economic stagnation plagued businesses and communities across the state.

View the digital ad here

View the mail here

AFP Spokesman Bill Riggs issued the following statement: 

“As a state senator, Gretchen Whitmer voted to raise income taxes, taxes on everyday services, business taxes and even the gas tax. And as Michigan was losing more than half a million jobs, Whitmer stood by Governor Granholm and supported her failed agenda. After years of an economy beaten down by harmful policies, Michiganders can’t afford Whitmer’s tax-and-spend agenda that would swiftly undercut any promise of growth.”

As the nation’s largest grassroots advocate for economic freedom and free societies, AFP strives to advance pro-growth policies that reduce the tax burden on individuals and businesses, rein in corporate welfare and out-of-control government spending and remove barriers to opportunity. In doing so, AFP and the Michigan state chapter aim to help the state and the nation reach its full economic potential. As part of this mission, AFP Michigan will be encouraging lawmakers to embrace policies at the state and federal level that help improve the lives of all Americans, especially the least fortunate.

BACKGROUND:

Whitmer Stood With Granholm On Pushing For Higher Taxes

Granholm’s Legacy Included Threatening To Shut Down The State Government Unless She Received A Budget That Included Massive Tax Increases. “Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm ordered government offices to shut on Monday if the state’s divided legislature cannot come to terms on a budget that would include higher taxes. … Granholm said she would not sign a budget that relied on spending cuts alone to close the estimated $1.75 billion budget deficit facing the economically distressed state.” (Kevin Krolicki, “Michigan Governor Threatens Shutdown Amid Budget Talks,” Reuters, 9/27/07)

  • Whitmer Believed That “There [Was] No Scenario That Would Balance This Budget” Without Tax Increases And Favored Raising The Income Tax And Imposing A Use Tax On Services. “Whitmer said a shutdown would have dire circumstances, not the least of which is 12,000 state workers from Ingham County whose paychecks are at risk. ‘There is no scenario that would balance this budget without making cuts, having some reforms and raising revenue, and we’ve known that since the governor introduced the budget eight months ago,’ she said. Whitmer would like to see the income tax raised from 3.9 percent back to 4.3 percent where it was in the 1990s, and to see the sales tax applied to some services.” (“Lawmakers Speak Out,” Lansing State Journal, 9/28/07)

As A State Legislator, Whitmer Voted To Raise Income Taxes, Taxes On Everyday Services, Business Taxes, And The Gas Tax

In October 2007, Whitmer Voted In Favor Of House Bill No. 5194. (House Bill 5194, Roll Call Vote #397: Conference Report Adopted 19-19, 10/1/07, Whitmer Voted Yea)

  • House Bill 5194 Temporarily Hiked The Income Tax From 3.9 Percent To 4.35 Percent. “The Act imposes a tax on the taxable income of every person other than a corporation. Previously, the tax rate was 3.9%. Under the bill, beginning on October 1, 2007, and before October 1, 2011, the tax rate is 4.35%. Beginning on October 1, 2011, and each October 1 after 2011, the maximum rate must be reduced by 0.1 each year until the rate is 3.95%. On and after October 1, 2015, the rate will be 3.9%.” (“H.B. 5194: Enacted Summary,” Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency, 10/9/07)

In October 2007, Whitmer Voted In Favor Of House Bill 5198. (House Bill 5198, Roll Call Vote #398: Conference Report Adopted 19-19, 10/1/07, Whitmer Voted Yea)

  • House Bill 5198 Imposed A Use Tax On A Number Of Different Services. “The Act imposes a specific tax for the privilege of using, storing, or consuming tangible personal property in the State at a rate of 6% of the price of property or services specified in the Act. Penalties and interest are added to the tax if applicable and as provided in the Act. Under the bill, the tax is extended to the use or consumption of the following services …” (“H.B. 5198: Enacted Summary,”Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency, 10/4/07)

In December 2007, Whitmer Voted In Favor Of House Bill 5408. (House Bill 5408, Roll Call Vote #515: Passed 33-4, 12/1/07, Whitmer Voted Yea)

  • House Bill 5408 Imposed An Annual Surcharge Equal To A Percentage Of The Taxpayer’s Michigan Business Tax Liability. “Under the bill, in addition to the taxes imposed and levied under the MBT Act, and subject to the limitations described below, an annual surcharge would be imposed and levied on each taxpayer equal to the following percentage of the taxpayer’s MBT liability after allocation or apportionment to the State but before calculation of the various credits available under the Act: For each taxpayer other than a person subject to the tax imposed under Chapter 2B, for tax years ending after December 31, 2007, and before January 1, 2011: 14.0%. For a person subject to the tax imposed under Chapter 2B, for tax years ending after December 31, 2007, and before January 1, 2009: 27.7%. For a person subject to the tax imposed under Chapter 2B, for tax years ending after December 31, 2008, and before January 1, 2011: 23.4%.” (“H.B. 5408 (S-4): Summary,” Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency, 11/29/07)

In November 2014, Whitmer Voted In Favor Of House Bill 5477. (House Bill 5477, Roll Call Vote #662: Passed 23-14, 11/13/14, Whitmer Voted Yea)

  • The Bill Was Estimated To Result In A Total Hike Of 25 Cents Per Gallon Of Fuel By January 1, 2018. “The Senate plan, which the House rejected, was based on assumptions that would result in a price increase of about 8 cents a gallon on April 1, with fuel taxes increasing about another 17 cents a gallon, for a total hike of 25 cents, by Jan. 1, 2018.” (Paul Egan, “Road Plan Would Hike Fuel 7 Cents Per Gallon,” Detroit Free Press, 12/25/14)

In December 2014, Whitmer Voted In Favor Of Another Version Of House Bill 5477. (House Bill 5477, Roll Call Vote #921: Passed 23-15, 12/19/14, Whitmer Voted Yea)

  • This Version Of House Bill 5477 Sent A Road Funding And Sales Tax Package To A Statewide Ballot And Was Expected To Increase Fuel Taxes By Roughly 7 Cents Per Gallon. “The price of gas would go up under a road funding and sales tax package the Legislature has sent to the May 5 statewide ballot, but not as much as it might have under an earlier plan passed by the Senate but rejected by the state House. The package sent to voters is expected to increase fuel taxes by about 7 cents a gallon as of next Oct. 1 …” (Paul Egan, “Road Plan Would Hike Fuel 7 Cents Per Gallon,” Detroit Free Press, 12/25/14)

For further information or to set up an interview, please send an email to GBraud@afphq.org.

Americans for Prosperity (AFP) exists to recruit, educate, and mobilize citizens in support of the policies and goals of a free society at the local, state, and federal level, helping every American live their dream – especially the least fortunate. AFP has more than 3.2 million activists across the nation, a local infrastructure that includes 36 state chapters, and has received financial support from more than 100,000 Americans in all 50 states. For more information, visit www.AmericansForProsperity.org

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