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Libertarian gubernatorial nominee Kathie Glass vowed to cut the state budget in half during an Oct. 19 debate in Austin also featuring Democratic candidate Bill White and Green Party hopeful Deb Shafto.
There was more to her vision of revenue and taxes. "We need to end property taxes and end (business) franchise taxes," Glass said. Then came a revelation: "In the Sunday Houston Chronicle, Gov. (Rick) Perry said that he wanted another business tax."
Missed that Perry bombshell? Us too. Far as we can tell, Perry has lately ruled out tax hikes. In an Oct. 15 interview with the Texas Tribune, the governor reaffirmed his intent not to raise taxes to balance the next state budget, adding that he's got a track record of no tax increases--a claim that we're not checking in this article.
So what about Perry calling for another business tax?
Glass's campaign pointed us to a news article on page A-10 of the Oct. 17 Houston Chronicle titled "Where They Stand," subtitled "the candidates for governor, on the issues." The article briefs where Perry and White stand on such topics as higher and public education, border security, state spending and economic development. And in the economic development portion, it says Perry claims his policies resulted in jobs being added to Texas and brags that Texas has been hailed as the nation's leading state for business. The next sentence--highlighted by Glass's camp--says Perry cut "property taxes by $15.5 billion statewide, paid for in part by the adoption of a new business tax."
Huh. We read that sentence as referring to 2006 legislation encouraged by Perry that resulted in the state picking up a bigger share of public school funding by using state revenues--including money from a major revision of the state's business franchise tax--to cover reductions in local school property tax rates.
We called Glass to to share our read of the Chronicle story. Glass said: "I just read it differently and I am not willing to give Perry any slack. He should have been there" at the debate. She was referring to Perry's refusal to join any debate with White unless White released additional tax returns.
Our conclusion is that Glass's statement greatly distorts the Chronicle story which--if Perry had called for a new tax--would have landed on the front page. In fact, we smell smoke. Pants on Fire!
Interview, Kathie Glass, Oct. 21, 2010
The Houston Chronicle, news article, "Where They Stand, Candidates for Governor on the Issues," Oct. 17, 2010 (provided by Kathie Glass campaign, Oct. 20, 2010)
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