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Sheri’s $3 Billion Win: How grassroots action foiled a massive money grab.

May 13, 2024 by AFP

We’ve all heard that if a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is – especially if government bureaucrats and politicians are involved.

Last year Colorado government officials tried to trick Coloradoans out of billions by selling a massive money grab as a tax cut.

But they did not expect Sheri Tuffield and hundreds of Americans for Prosperity volunteers to see right through this bad deal and call them out on their scheme.

In 1992, Colorado passed the Taxpayers Bill of Rights (TABOR), which means that whenever the Colorado government has a budget surplus, it must refund the taxpayers. That’s billions of dollars back into the taxpayer’s wallets.

Some Colorado politicians wanted to take a larger slice of the state’s economic pie for their pet projects, so they crafted Proposition HH: A misleading “tax relief” bill that decreased less than one percent of Coloradans’ property tax but would phase out TABOR refunds permanently.

Sheri, an AFP volunteer and longtime resident of Colorado, was not having it. As a retired journalist, she knows deception when she sees it, and Proposition HH was just that.

“When I found out what the government was trying to do to people, that they were being deceptive about it. It really incensed me,” Sheri said. So, she decided to act upon it.

Sheri and hundreds of AFP volunteers tirelessly worked the phones, knocked on thousands of doors, and warned Coloradoans about the government’s attempt to bait and switch voters with Proposition HH. It became clear to Sheri that Coloradans were not pleased with the scheme politicians tried to pull on them. Folks at the doors thanked them for informing them about Proposition HH and they could feel momentum on their side.

The result? An overwhelming majority of Coloradoans voted against Proposition HH. Just a few months later, the impact of that win was felt by every Coloradan. Colorado officials announced a budget surplus greater than $3 billion for 2023, meaning every Colorado taxpayer would receive an $800 refund and $1,600 for families. With inflation crushing families under Bidenomics, this was welcomed relief for Sheri and her friends and family.

Thanks to volunteers like Sheri, Coloradoans kept a popular program that forces the government to act more responsibly and ensures greater transparency and accountability to the people. Unlike this Colorado win, the story in Washington DC is very different. Big government politicians are driving our country off a fiscal cliff by racking up over $34 trillion of debt. It’s time for Congress to get serious about fiscal responsibility and take a major step towards balancing the books.

It’s time to enact Comprehensive Budget Reform.

A comprehensive budget — as opposed to the 12 or more spending bills Congress usually considers — could help fix the economy in America by forcing lawmakers to budget responsibly and get serious about reducing inflation.

A comprehensive, or real, budget includes all spending and revenue. It would empower Congress to budget comprehensively and bring transparency back to the congressional budgeting process. It would also require Congress to decide budget priorities and make tradeoffs, like any family must with their household budget. You have to budget responsibly – why shouldn’t Congress?

Sheri’s story is a good example of what we can achieve if we hold leaders accountable for their fiscal actions. While bad ideas abound, the excellent news is thousands of volunteers with Americans for Prosperity, like Sheri, are ready to fight for real solutions that empower the American people,  like TABOR and Comprehensive Budget Reform.

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