Maryland Decides To Raise Tax On “Rich.” In Other News, Maryland Republicans Self-Castrate.

The Legislature of the State of Maryland has decided to address its budget crisis by raising taxes.

While all Marylanders will pay more in taxes by adding a 0.15 to 0.25 percent increase income tax. Hardest hit are those making above $500,000 who were hit with a greater tax increase.

The change would increase the tax rate for anyone making over $500,000 — roughly 15,000 households, according to the comptroller’s office — from the current 5.5 percent to 5.75 percent.

And, unlike the way Maryland usually assesses taxes, the new 5.75 percent rate would apply to every penny, not just the earnings over $500,000.

The Legislature also increased taxes on cigars and some items purchased online.

The increase follows a the largest hike in toll fees for Maryland bridges, tunnels and roads in the history of the state which took place in November of 2011.

The Maryland Transportation Authority board voted in September to impose the toll increases, setting Nov. 1 as the effective date for the first round.

At the three Baltimore Harbor crossings — the Fort McHenry Tunnel, the Harbor Tunnel and the Key Bridge — drivers as of Tuesday pay a $3 cash rate each way instead of the $2 they’ve been kicking in since 2003.

On the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway, as Interstate 95 northeast of Baltimore is known, the basic northbound toll has risen from $5 to $6. At the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge, which crosses the Susquehanna River on U.S. 40, the same rate applies.

On the Bay Bridge, where a bargain $2.50 toll had been frozen in place since the 1970s, motorists’ luck has run out. The rate is now $4 — collected eastbound only — at least sparing drivers the ordeal of fumbling with change. In Southern Maryland, users of the Gov. Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge found they, too, had to pay $4 instead of the previous $3 to make the southbound Potomac River crossing.

And if one increase is good, two increases must be twice as good:

Tuesday’s increases will be followed by a second round in July 2013 that will push the cost of a round trip at the harbor crossings, the Kennedy Highway and the Hatem Bridge to $8. The increases at the Bay and Nice bridges will be held to $6; the authority board decided an earlier plan to more than double the tolls at the two spans was too much, too soon.

Oh, and did we mention that Maryland’s governor is pitching the idea of adding the state sales tax of 6% to gasoline sales? (on top of the taxes and fees motorists already pay.)

The governor is scheduled to testify before House and Senate committees on behalf of his $613 million-a-year plan to apply the state’s 6 percent sales tax to gas so Maryland can start spending hundreds of millions of dollars on backlogged road and transit projects.

We want to be fair and recognize that the state has a huge problem with a budget shortfall. Spending is exceeding income to the state by over a billion dollars a year, to say nothing of the debt the state already has on the books.

Yet Maryland is a Democrat run state – perfectly willing to increase taxes but afraid to address the “tough cuts” in spending that would balance the budget. That is not our analysis, that is a direct quote. Addressing the bill that raises taxes overall and increases taxes on the “wealthy,” the Sun reports:

The idea was based on a proposal by Montgomery County Sen. Roger Manno, a Democrat. “This bill had broad support because it was fair,” he said during debate. “It averts difficult cuts.” (emphasis ours)

The plan actually matches the one proposed by President Obama and Democrats – raise taxes on people and raise taxes disproportionally on the “wealthy” because the government can’t stop spending. There is no fiscal responsibility. Households and individuals everywhere are making “difficult cuts.” Is it too much to ask the government to do the same?

We don’t think so.

In Maryland, however, the issue of further “class warfare” has been legislated into the tax code.

“You are taking a certain class and you are singling them out. It is not right and it is not fair,” said Sen. Robert A. Zirkin, a Baltimore County Democrat.

We want to acknowledge that Senator Zirkin is a Democrat. He too sees the injustice of taxing people more for success and hard work.

Sen. Paul Pinsky, a liberal Democrat from Prince George’s County, defended the measure. “Is it wrong to ask people who make more to pay more?” he asked. “Is it radical? Not at all.”

Actually it is wrong. We have used the “hamburger analogy” before and we will use it again here.

Imagine if you walked into a fast food place and after getting into line, watched as the person in front of you paid a dollar for a hamburger. As you stepped up to the counter and ordered the same hamburger, the person behind the counter asks you how much you make. You tell her and she charges you $1.35 for the same hamburger the person in front of you just purchased for $1.00.

When you ask why there is a price discrepancy, the person behind the counter says, “it is because you make more than the person that was front of you. Is it wrong to ask you to pay more because you make more? Would you like fries with that?”

There is not a person reading this blog that would not object to that scenario and yet that is exactly what the Democrats are trying to push upon Americans. They believe it is morally correct to demand more payment from someone strictly based on their income.

Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller said the overall tax plan — needed to help close the state’s $1 billion budget shortfall — would have failed without the millionaire’s tax.

“Quite frankly, I wouldn’t have had the votes to pass it without that,” said Miller, a Calvert County Democrat.

You mean the plan that raised taxes on everyone and raised taxes on the wealthy disproportionately would not have passed?

And the downside of that is?

If this weren’t bad enough, the Baltimore Sun reports this:

Republican Sen. David Brinkley of Frederick said “Karl Marx would be proud” of the plan, though he later apologized for the remark when a colleague took offense.

Why is Brinkley apologizing for his opinion? Why is he apologizing for the truth? Why is his response anything other than “if the truth offends you, deal with it.”

While we generally abhor comments that are of the ad hominem variety, Brinkley’s comment is not attacking the person. His comment makes a valid observation on the taxation plan and bill.

Instead of sticking up for his comment, Brinkley succumbed to the nebulous charge of someone being “offended.”

Frankly, Brinkley’s comment shows a lack of testicular fortitude. Maybe to help balance the budget he can sell his testicles on eBay as he has no apparent use for them.

It is one thing to call someone a name in a legislative body as that is generally against Robert’s Rules of Order. Characterizing a taxation plan truthfully should be defended and the offended “colleague” should be told to put on adult underwear.

In case you haven’t noticed we are tired of Republicans backing down in order because someone is “offended” instead of sticking to their guns and saying “if the truth offends you, so be it.”

3 Responses to “Maryland Decides To Raise Tax On “Rich.” In Other News, Maryland Republicans Self-Castrate.”

  1. Eastern Shoreman says:

    Words can not express the disgust and contempt I have for this state and its so-called leaders. The people (Prince George, Montgomery and Baltimore City voters) who elect these politicians should be pleased with themselves. As for the rest of the Marylanders who didn’t? We’re leaving for Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. I spend as much money in tax-free Delaware as is possible. I will now spend nearly 100% and stop spending money online if tax receipts will end up in the state’s hands. The liberal voters need to prepare themselves for a lack of “free” services as the productive Marylanders bail and the state is left with no businesses and lots of outstretched hands looking for handouts.

    If you have been voting for politicians who promise to give you goodies at someone else’s expense, then you have no right to complain when they take your money and give it to someone else, including themselves. – Thomas Sowell (1992)

    • AAfterwit says:

      It is amazing when you think that people can vote not only at the ballot box, but with their feet and with their pocketbooks.

      It harkens back to the foundation of the country where the most effective protests against the government were economic in nature.

      Good luck to you.

      It has been some time since we have been to your part of Maryland, but you are truly blessed with beautiful country and hard working people.

      • Eastern Shoreman says:

        I now visit Middletown, De every two weeks to fulfill my food shopping needs. While there, I visit the Amish market and spend money there as well. And, enjoy a nice meal at Bob Evans or any of the other fine restaurants there. I do the same in Dover, but not as frequently. Middletown is closer; 24 miles. The number of Maryland tags in the Middletown Wal-Mart parking lot and Dover mall is amazing. All that revenue leaving Maryland, and they can’t figure out why…

        My home is 40K underwater. I hope 2015 is the year I am able to break even and buy land in lower Kent or upper Sussex county Delaware and place a modular home on and be done with Maryland. I’ll still have to drive to my job in Annapolis, but I won’t have to deal with but a fraction of what Marylanders will.

        Good riddance.

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