State of Idaho Archives: on Tax Reform


Michael Crapo: We cannot tax our way to prosperity; simplify tax code

I have been a leader in working to abolish the current federal tax code and replace it with something more simple and fair to working families. I have an A rating from the National Taxpayers Union. Our tax code is far too long, complex and anti-competitive to serve as the long-term foundation for economic growth. We cannot tax our way to prosperity and need to redesign our tax code with an emphasis on broadening the base, reducing complexity and eliminating anti-competitive provisions.
Source: 2021 Idaho Senate campaign website CrapoForSenate.com Jun 16, 2021

Brad Little: Proposes the single largest tax cuts in Idaho history

My plan is called "Building Idaho's Future." I am proposing more than $450 million in tax relief. This would be among the single largest tax cuts in Idaho history! To get there, I'm proposing $295 million in one-time tax relief and $160 million in permanent tax cuts to boost Idahoans' prosperity while keeping our tax rates competitive and our business climate vibrant. Curbing government spending and returning taxpayer dollars should be the perpetual mission of public servants.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Idaho legislature Jan 11, 2021

Paulette Jordan: Trump tax cut only benefitted rich, increased deficit

It's hypocritical that our current leaders in Washington D.C. promote being fiscally conservative, but then sleep on the job while our national debt explodes. They voted for tax cuts that only benefit the rich and make things more expensive for the rest of us. Risch voted for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and claimed it would somehow "reduce the debt and the deficit." He was wrong. The proof is everywhere: the national debt, federal deficit and government spending have continued to skyrocket.
Source: 2020 Idaho Senate campaign website PauletteForSenate.com Jun 29, 2020

Nancy Harris: Tax the wealthy; ensure they pay their fair share

Source: 2020 Idaho Senate website NancyHarrisForSenate.com Feb 5, 2020

Brad Little: Budget proposes $35 million in grocery tax relief

One of the staples of conservative governing is to put money back into taxpayers' pockets. I have long supported tax relief for Idahoans on the most basic of needs--groceries. My budget leverages $35 million from the dedicated Tax Relief Fund to provide Idaho families with grocery tax relief without competing against our General Fund priorities.
Source: 2020 Idaho State of the State address Jan 6, 2020

Brad Little: Inform taxpayers to increase state income tax withholdings

Last year, we delivered one of the largest tax cuts in state history. As a result, state income and business tax rates are the lowest since 1934. Idahoans are enjoying bigger paychecks.

Even though sales tax and corporate tax revenues have been robust, our personal income tax receipts are falling short. The federal tax code changed recently, but few Idahoans know they need to update their tax withholdings. I am ordering the Tax Commission to do all they can to better inform taxpayers of what they need to do to avoid a surprise income tax bill.

My team is following this issue closely, confident revenues will eventually match the rapid pace of economic growth. Though we are confident, in true Idaho fashion, we will not spend money until it's in the bank.

My budget recommendation will balance our books and fulfill important promises. Additionally, any new tax exemption should be tied to a proportional reduction in state spending or real income generation.

Source: 2019 State of the State address to Idaho legislature Jan 7, 2019

Brad Little: Lift tax burden for everyone

Taxes need to be fair, simple, competitive and predictable. As Governor, I will look for ways to lower the tax burden on Idahoans so that economic prosperity can continue in every community across Idaho. We need the lightest possible hand of government in the day to day lives of our citizens and businesses.
Source: 2018 Idaho Gubernatorial website BradLittleForIdaho.com Sep 1, 2017

Tommy Ahlquist: Lower taxes will lead to job growth

Idaho's taxes are higher than our neighboring states. If we want to be more competitive, we must reform the tax code and take action to get government out of the way of small businesses to encourage growth and create new, good-paying jobs. Tommy will make government more efficient so we can lower our taxes. He will take a fresh look at every process, every department, every regulation and every dollar spent because, after all, it's your money.
Source: 2018 Idaho Gubernatorial website TommyForIdaho.com Aug 8, 2017

Jim Risch: No tax increases, but no cuts to entitlements nor veterans

Q: Should the federal government raise taxes in order to balance the budget? Which spending cuts do you favor?

JIM RISCH: No tax increases. I do not favor any cut to the current recipients of social security, Medicare, veterans' benefits, or those who are soon to become recipients. Those promised benefits have been earned and paid for by the recipients and are a legal and moral obligation to them. Because the government is spending 25% more money than they are taking in, and borrowing that money, all other spending needs to be reviewed.

NELS MITCHELL: Members of the Senate spend too much time grabbing for headlines. When Ted Cruz, aided by Jim Risch, shut down the government for 16 days more than $24 billion of taxpayer dollars was wasted. That type of callous waste and indifference is dangerous to the country. We have a tax system that plays favorites and is inefficient.

Source: Idaho Statesman Voter Guide on 2014 Idaho Senate race Jun 25, 2014

Butch Otter: Lower the marginal tax rate for highest income

Legislative Summary:OnTheIssues Interpretation: By removing the top tax bracket on individual income, this bill reduces the income tax from 7.8% to 7.4% for the highest income earners. Under this bill, that 7.4% personal tax rate will match the 7.4% corporate tax rate.

Legislative Outcome: Passed Senate 28-7-0 on March 29; passed House 49-20-1 on March 1; signed by Gov. Otter on April 5.

Source: Idaho legislative voting records: S 1082 Apr 5, 2012

Russ Fulcher: Lower the marginal tax rate for highest income

Legislative Summary:OnTheIssues Interpretation: By removing the top tax bracket on individual income, this bill reduces the income tax from 7.8% to 7.4% for the highest income earners. Under this bill, that 7.4% personal tax rate will match the 7.4% corporate tax rate.

Legislative Outcome: Passed Senate 28-7-0 on March 29; Sen. Russ Fulcher voted YEA; passed House 49-20-1 on March 1; signed by Gov. Otter on April 5.

Source: Idaho legislative voting records: S 1082 Mar 29, 2012

Butch Otter: Reduce tax burden; lower rates for individuals & businesses

I encourage you to seriously consider legislation being introduced by Representative Marv Hagedorn. His bill would equalize and then gradually reduce our marginal State income tax rates for individuals and businesses over ten years, starting in 2013. But whether it's that bill or an alternative, we need a long-term plan for reducing the tax burden on our citizens. That will go a long way toward providing a competitive advantage for Idahoans, stimulating economic growth and expanding our tax base.
Source: Idaho 2011 State of the State and Budget Address Jan 10, 2011

Raul Labrador: Oppose any and all efforts to increase taxes

Throughout his time in the Idaho Legislature, Raul Labrador has been a proven tax fighter and a committed advocate for tax relief for Idaho families. Whether it is leading the effort against efforts to raise the gas tax or sponsoring legislation to reduce the burden taxes play on you and your family, Raul has been at the forefront of the fight to protect Idaho taxpayers.

Raul will also oppose any and all efforts to increase your taxes, just like he has in the Idaho Legislature.

Source: 2010 House campaign website, labrador4idaho.com, "Issues" Nov 2, 2010

Jim Risch: I’ll drop out if I got $53,000 in undisclosed tax relief

Jim Risch said he would drop out of the race if an accusation over property taxes made by challenger Larry LaRocco turned out to be true. The issue is whether Risch got $53,000 in tax relief last year.

LaRocco said, “When he was governor he passed a property tax relief bill where he personally benefited at least $53,000, but he never disclosed it to the people of Idaho,” said LaRocco.

“Well, if I got $53,000 out of that bill, I’ll drop out of this race and if you’re wrong you should do the same,“ said Risch.

NewsChannel 7 took a look; we found 13 pieces of property that would fall under the 2006 tax relief umbrella. According to LaRocco’s property valuation, Risch totaled $53,295 in tax breaks. But some of Risch’s property falls under Idaho’s agricultural exemption which means it’s used for farming or grazing--and that makes the property value much lower. Using the same math with the lower agriculture value numbers, Risch actually got a relief of little more than $5,000.

Source: 2008 Idaho Senate Debate reported on KTVB Idaho News Oct 22, 2008

Larry LaRocco: Risch got undisclosed personal $53,000 from his tax relief

Jim Risch said he would drop out of the race if an accusation over property taxes made by challenger Larry LaRocco turned out to be true. The issue is whether Risch got $53,000 in tax relief last year.

LaRocco said, “When he was governor he passed a property tax relief bill where he personally benefited at least $53,000, but he never disclosed it to the people of Idaho,” said LaRocco.

“Well, if I got $53,000 out of that bill, I’ll drop out of this race and if you’re wrong you should do the same,“ said Risch.

NewsChannel 7 took a look; we found 13 pieces of property that would fall under the 2006 tax relief umbrella. According to LaRocco’s property valuation, Risch totaled $53,295 in tax breaks. But some of Risch’s property falls under Idaho’s agricultural exemption which means it’s used for farming or grazing--and that makes the property value much lower. Using the same math with the lower agriculture value numbers, Risch actually got a relief of little more than $5,000.

Source: 2008 Idaho Senate Debate reported on KTVB Idaho News Oct 22, 2008

Jim Risch: Earned nickname “taxpayers friend” by fighting tax increases

As governor I called a special session of the legislature to put a stop to skyrocketing property tax increases. After years of effectively fighting tax increases in the state senate I have earned a name I am proud of “the taxpayers friend.”
Source: 2008 Senate campaign website, www.Risch4Idaho.com, “Issues” May 2, 2008

Jerry Brady: Remove tax breaks for media

Brady, a newspaper publisher & media company president, said he would eliminate laws that exempt sales tax from being paid on broadcast & publishing equipment. The sales tax breaks “have no utility except to make life easier for my company,” said Brady, who owns the Post Register newspaper and KIFI-TV in Idaho Falls. “Why should I be singled out to receive those special favors that no one else is receiving?” The purchases would generate about $1.9 million for the state if the exemptions were removed.
Source: Idaho Statesman “Brady Favors Ending Media Exemption” Oct 8, 2002

Dirk Kempthorne: Return $140M of surplus to taxpayers

We have created a positive atmosphere that has generated a surplus. My budget package recognizes where this money came from in the first place. And that’s the hard-working Idahoans who pay taxes. Therefore, I will recommend tax relief in the amount of $140 million. A portion of that is permanent. A portion of that is one-time. And just as we did this year, if the surplus continues, we can continue to provide significant tax relief next year.

In that $140 million, the categories of tax relief will be individual income tax, corporate tax, investment tax credit enhancements and broadband connectivity geared toward our rural areas. There will be an increase for senior citizens in the grocery tax credit, and I am recommending that for young families that the childcare tax deduction become a tax credit, and an increase in the allowance on elderly dependent care. We will have for the first time research and development tax credits. It is a well-rounded, inclusive program.

Source: 2001 State of the State address to the Idaho legislature Jan 8, 2001

  • The above quotations are from State of Idaho Politicians: Archives.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Tax Reform:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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Page last updated: Oct 13, 2021