Monday, September 22, 2014

Report on Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett’s Campaign Appearance in Berks County

           I attended a campaign appearance by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett in Berks County last week.

            The warm-up speakers praised Corbett for his fiscal discipline, citing unemployment compensation reform as one example that has saved millions of dollars, and for his aid to cities like Reading, while pointing out the lies from his liberal opponents that he cut education spending.

            Corbett boasted that he had kept his promise to balance the budget through fiscal discipline without raising taxes, and, in fact, had cut taxes.  He also explained that there were no education cuts and that state funding of education is at its highest level ever.  I have posted several times attesting that, as a School Director in Pennsylvania at the time, the extra Obama stimulus funds the previous Governor channeled to education were expected only to be temporary.  Therefore, the return to prior funding levels after the end of the stimulus was not a spending “cut.”  Despite Corbett’s liberal opponents’ claims, contributions to the teachers’ pension fund have counted since the 1970s towards education spending. 

Corbett also noted that there have been hundreds of millions of additional dollars in state tax revenue raised because of the natural gas industry, which has contributed to the drastic reduction in the state’s unemployment rate and the creation of well-paying jobs, directly and indirectly, among the more than 180,000 that have been created in less than four years since he took office.  The revenue comes from both state corporate income taxes and the principled impact fee he signed into law.    

            His liberal Democratic opponent in the gubernatorial election has promised that he would raise taxes on the middle class through a proposed constitutional amendment to levy a progressive income tax, Corbett noted.  The Governor observed that his opponent would go back to the tax and spend policies of his liberal Democratic predecessor.  The liberal Democrat would also impose an extraction tax on top of the state corporate taxes the natural gas companies pay, which are the highest in the Union, which could be a disincentive to the industry to continue to operate in the Keystone State, which has become the leader in natural gas production. 

           I have posted previously about Corbett’s numerous other accomplishments, such as welfare reform, tort reform, the Castle Doctrine, the elimination of small family-owned businesses from estate taxes, etc.

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