Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Rights and Reason: Alabama governor says voters have Christian duty to approve big tax increase

This from the AP:

Alabama’s new governor is trying to persuade voters to approve the biggest tax increase in state history by telling them it is their Christian duty. And for a state in the Bible Belt, that might seem like a winning strategy.

Instead, Republican Gov. Bob Riley’s $1.2 billion tax package is alienating even the Christian Coalition and other supporters, who see Riley as a Judas. Riley had consistently opposed new taxes while in Congress.

Riley says the tax increase is needed to erase Alabama’s biggest deficit since the Depression and improve education. The plan also seeks to help the poor by raising the income level at which people have to begin paying state taxes.

Alabama’s threshold for paying state taxes is the lowest in the nation at just $4,600 for a family of four and has been unchanged since 1982.

Riley, a Southern Baptist, says Alabama has taxed its poorest too harshly for too long.

"According to our Christian ethics, we’re supposed to love God, love each other and help take care of the poor," he said. "It is immoral to charge somebody making $5,000 an income tax."
Well, we now at least know that God favors the progressive income tax.

No comments: