House Democrats just announced that they would oppose passage of HB 387, the bill to rework the state’s tax code – swapping an extension of the sales tax to new territory, in exchange for dropping the personal income tax rate from 6 to 4.5 percent.
Rhetoric aside, the announcement carries a strategic importance: House Republicans will be forced to search harder for votes within their own caucus. And if House Democrats, led by Stacey Abrams of Atlanta, don’t go along, it’s highly unlikely that the more irascible Democrats of the Senate will cooperate in that chamber.
From the news release:
“The tax council proposal of HB 387 is a shell game. Republicans have proposed raising taxes on the middle class. They’re quick to say that they’re lowering the income tax rate for most Georgians. What they don’t say is that they’re also eliminating many exemptions that help Georgia families. They are taxing the middle class, but pretending not to,” said Rep. Brian Thomas, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus.
The sting comes from House Democratic Caucus Whip Rep. Carolyn Hugley of Columbus, who complained of the lack of discussion the bill’s been subject to. “Georgia families deserve better than Tax and Pretend Republicans,” she says.
- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider