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What’s New? The Washington Post Supports Higher Taxes.

Yesterday, we growled over how the Roanoke Times complained the transportation bill (HB 3202) passed by the Republican-controlled General Assembly would dip into the state’s General Fund rather than raise taxes to pay for transportation enhancements, which afterall has been present since at least 2004 as Virginia’s top priority.

Tim Craig of the Washington Post asks today whether it is “wise to use the General Fund” to pay for transportation improvements. Craig writes:

“their debate exposes a deep philosophical rift that could affect Virginia taxpayers for a generation. And with all 140 legislators up for reelection this fall, voters are going to be asked to choose between vastly different visions for ensuring that government is adequately funded.”

Craig does quote both sides although Sen. Richard Saslaw’s (D-Fairfax) opinion “that Republicans are out to ‘starve government’” seems rather other the top, especially when Saslaw adds, "You starve out public schools. You starve out higher education. You starve out health and human service. And this is the down payment for doing just that."

As if to prove it’s liberal bias on raising taxes, one of the editorials today claims that “Virginia’s transportation bill dumps too much into the laps of localities.” They offer this conclusion:

“Most Northern Virginians are probably willing to pay more through higher taxes and fees if it means widening the jam-packed roads and improving dysfunctional intersections that they use regularly. Mr. Kaine, mindful of that, seems prepared to sign some version of this transportation bill at the end of the day. But he is right to push hard for a bill that is fair, balanced and up to the task of addressing a huge problem.”

The Post, like the Roanoke Times yesterday forgets one important fact. Whether the money comes from the General Fund or other sources, it’s the taxpayers’ money, and not Gov. Kaine’s (D) or the General Assembly’s. And besides, isn't transportation a core governmental function, and isn't the General Assembly supposed to prioritize changing needs?

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