Commentary - Wealthy aren't only ones paying more taxes
By State Rep. Mary Franson,
Once upon a time, Democrat legislators and Governor Dayton promised that the rich would be paying more in taxes and that middle and low income Minnesotans would be shielded from the effects of their policies. Now that July has arrived and many of the new tax increases are in effect, our state will discover the hard reality that all Minnesotans will be paying more under the tax increases and policies passed by Democrats during the 2013 legislative session. In short, Democrats in St. Paul think we're all Richie Rich now.
You don't need to take just my word for it. In June, Governor Dayton's Department of Revenue released a Tax Incidence Analysis outlining how every hard-working Minnesotan will be paying more through income taxes as a result of the tax increases passed by the Legislature. The analysis also confirms that the business tax increases ultimately hit consumers. Over 60 percent of the corporate tax increases get shifted to Minnesota consumers or workers. In addition, Minnesota will require major online retailers to collect 6.875 percent sales tax. That means if you buy books or music online, you'll be paying more.
Also, expect to hear from Democrat lawmakers that the 183 percent per-pack tax increase on cigarettes is to help alleviate the health costs imposed on the state due to smoking. In reality, the state is depending on the revenue from that tax to pay for the construction of the Vikings stadium. I don't smoke but I believe it's wrong for the state to place the burden of building a stadium for millionaires and billionaires upon smokers.
Democrats' crowning achievement this session was passing the forced unionization of in-home childcare providers. As a former childcare provider, I know we don't need leaders of big unions meddling with the small business owners who run childcare centers out of their home. Because of the requirement of paying union dues, costs will go up for providers and parents.
Perhaps Democrats in St. Paul believe all Minnesotans have magically undergone a "rags to riches" experience. Unfortunately, most of us haven't been so lucky. Like you, I'm no Richie Rich. I'm a working mom trying to provide the best for my family. We now know that the wealthy aren't the only ones who will be paying more under the tax increases and policies Democrats imposed on Minnesota. All Minnesotans, regardless of income level, will be carrying the burden of these tax increases. For Democrats in the Legislature or for Governor Dayton to argue otherwise is an act of mental gymnastics.