I think it’s instructive that people who are anti-tax like Rodney Tom usually run on we can magic up solutions. They’ll talk about reform or combating wastefraudandabuse. So it leaves the impression that you can lower taxes and at the same time keep our programs in place.
So they don’t seem to ever campaign on dismantling the social safety net. But when they get to Olympia, it turns out that — whoops — they’re doing just that. So we get to Tom trying to repeal the never even implemented family leave law.
Braun’s bill has 10 co-sponsors, including two Democrats who have joined with Republicans to form a new coalition this legislative session. The measure has its first public hearing Monday. Braun called Keiser’s counter-bill one of “good intentions, but good intentions aren’t always affordable.”
“We already have a program on the books that we can’t fund,” he said. “Expanding it seems contrary to public interests.”
Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom, D-Medina, voted in favor of the paid family leave law when he was in the House, but he is now signed on to Braun’s repeal bill. He said some companies already are moving in the direction of paid family leave, but that taxpayers and businesses wouldn’t support a tax increase for a statewide program.
When he voted for it initially, it’s presumably at least because he thought his constituency supported it. So when he talks about the will of his constituents to not raise taxes, that has to be counterbalanced against the fact that his constituents probably want to live in a state with a strong safety net. So maybe when people like Rodney Tom run for office next time, they can be honest and instead of reforming education they can talk about how they’ll make schools more overcrowded. And instead of finding waste they can talk about destroying the social safety net. Because that’s the choice he and the rest of the GOP majority want. Maybe when that choice is laid out, their constituency won’t be so happy with the low taxes they keep promising.