Here Comes the Sales Tax Measure?

Americans for Tax ReformJust released by Americans for Tax Reform

Good Evening Arizona Taxpayers,

The Arizona Senate, moments ago, voted to send Gov. Brewer’s long sought sales tax increase to a May 18 special election ballot.

The bill, SCR 1001, now heads to the House where it will face staunch opposition.

In this afternoon’s vote, four senators broke their Taxpayer Protection Pledge, a promise they made to their constituents to oppose “any and all efforts to raise taxes.” The senators who broke their commitment to constituents are as follows:

Bob Burns (R-Peoria)
Linda Gray (R-Phoenix)
Barbara Leff (R-Paradise Valley)
Jay Tibshraeny (R-Chandler)

“Its always unfortunate when lawmakers prove that they made a central campaign promise for reasons of political expediency, only later to demonstrate, much like Obama’s pledge not to raise taxes on those making less than $250,000 a year, that the commitment was hollow,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform.

Americans for Tax Reform applauds those senators who stayed true to their promise to constituents today by opposing the referral. Those senators include:

Ron Gould (R-Lake Havasu)
Chuck Gray (R-Mesa)
Jack Harper (R-Surprise)
John Huppenthal (R-Chandler)
Russell Pearce (R-Mesa)
Thayer Verschoor (R-Gilbert)

Americans for Tax Reform
722 12th Street, NW – 4th floor
Washington, DC 20005


  1. PCbutnotPC says

    Hey, let the voters have a say. If they turn it down, then this will clear the minds of the rest of the Legislature to know that the common man is giving a green light to slash and burn state government back to the affordable.

  2. Mr. Norquist,

    You are not a resident of the great state of Arizona. You do not vote here. You have no claim on this state and its legislative members. You are not even registered to do business in this great state as witnessed by your need to put your Washington, DC address on your letter. Please take your political axe home with you and let the citizens of this great state run their business as they see fit.

  3. So, I’m confused. Do we trust “WE THE PEOPLE” (as it’s constantly screamed by the teabagger faction), except when it comes, to you know, voting on their own economic fate?

    This doesn’t fit into the conservative narrative of self-determination.

  4. Fly Grover Fly says

    I personally called my Senator and Reps and told them voting to allow me a voice was not going back on any pledge.

    Grover needs to put up or shut up. I have seen no plan to balance the budget. All I have seen from this group is borrowing and mortgaging out future just like Obama.

    Here’s a concept-guess what will be used to pay back all of those extra interest costs-you got it-TAXES!!

    If there is one thing Grover doesn’t understand about Arizona, it’s that we don’t listen to high powered Washington lobbyists.

  5. Hold a sec says

    I don’t understand why you’re mad at Norquist. He didn’t force anyone to sign anything. He’s just letting us know who kept their word and who didn’t.

    I’ll certainly keep this info in mind come election time. If you like the sales tax referral then it won’t matter to you. To many it will though.

    How much will this special election cost by the way. Anyone heard any figures? What else would be on the ballot?

  6. We should remember that Barbara Leff and Thayer Verschoor are squaring off in the GOP primary race for State Treasurer. I used to like Ms. Leff. But I’m going to have to vote for Mr. Verschoor now! Sorry, Barbara.

  7. I can see that Mr. Norquist is upset that someone broke their promise to him, but why should the people of Arizona care one wit.

  8. Yah, right. says

    I personally want to thank my sycophants for lapping up the milk of idiocy that flows from my mouth.


    These folks refuse to uphold the constitution of the STATE OF ARIZONA- THEIR PRIMARY OATH TO US, THE CITIZENS OF THE STATE OF ARIZONA:

    Ron Gould (R-Lake Havasu)
    Chuck Gray (R-Mesa)
    Jack Harper (R-Surprise)
    John Huppenthal (R-Chandler)
    Russell Pearce (R-Mesa)
    Thayer Verschoor (R-Gilbert)


  9. One-of-Six says

    “Ya Right”,

    Don’t make us drown your favorite government in the bath tub.

  10. I just looked up the language the pledge these reps signed and makes it pretty clear that the commitment they made was to the constituents, not Norquist:

    I don’t understand the confusion. Seems pretty cut and dry.

  11. Umm,
    Sorry, I don’t buy it. It is clear the pledge is to Norquist and ATR since they alone are the arbiter of what constitutes a tax increase or not, as evidenced by the ‘ok’ he gave to lawmakers to vote for the very same sales tax referral they voted for today. Last session lawmakers weren’t listening to what constituents wanted, they were checking out emails coming from Norquist while on the Senate/House floor.

    Also, ATR and Norquist ‘punish’ those who violate the pledge by supporting their opponents. This whole claim that the pledge is to ‘constituents’ is a ridiculous fig-leaf.

  12. West Valley GOP says

    Permitting a vote on a sales tax isn’t the same as voting to raise taxes. That is where Norquist comes off badly. No one voted to raise taxes. No one.

    We can allow people the right to do all sorts of things, but that doesn’t mean that we’ve done them ourselves. Legislators who send measures to the ballot never actually vote to pass what they are referring.

  13. To Tell The Truth says

    Letting the people vote to decide what they want to do–is that the American way to govern? How could this be breaking a “Tax Pledge”?

    On the race for State Treasurer-if these two are the best we have we are in trouble.

  14. West Valley,

    Of course it is. If we had government referendum, then we do not need the legislature.

    We do not have government by referendum, we have a REPUBLICAN form of government.

    Voting to refer to the ballot means the legislator voted for a tax increase.

    If they did not want a tax increase, then they cast their “NO” vote.

    The game of political cover isn’t working this time. SORRY

  15. Arizona is in the mess we are in partly because of referendums. Most people don’t see the big picture. We can’t even balance the budget in a sane way now because so much of the budget is off limits.

  16. Apologists for the tax hikers abound on the comments section of this post.

  17. For a right leaning/conservative blog, the comment section is full Daily Kos/Meda Matters types.

  18. Seriously, Isn’t the First Amendment a wonderful idea. 🙂

  19. Ron, you clearly don’t understand what the first amendment is and how it has no relation to this matter.

    If the public wants to vote on this so bad then it shouldn’t be hard to get the necessary number of signatures to put this tax hike on the ballot. Oh wait, they tried that two years ago w/ TIME and it failed miserably.

  20. The first amendment entails the public’s right to petition theIr government. If the public really wants to vote for a tax increase then start a petition drive to get it on the ballot. That would be an exercise of the people’s first amendment rights.

  21. Wow – Every single Republican candidate who won in the Illinois primary yesterday had one thing in common: they signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.

    Arizona lawmakers would be wise to take notice.

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