La. Dems sound off against Jindal tax plan
BATON ROUGE - Democrats critical of Gov. Bobby Jindal's tax swap plan sounded off at the state Capitol today.
Representative James Armes (D-La. 30) said Jindal's plan to eliminate the state income tax and increase the state sales tax would take from the poor and give to the rich, and suggested they call the governor "Jindal Hood."
He noted that Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan paid $34,000 in Louisiana income taxes for playing at a Saints game last season. Under Jindal's plan, he said Ryan would have paid nothing.
Jindal has said his tax reforms would remain revenue neutral by also eliminating or paring back incentives and loopholes, and putting new taxes on services which before had not been taxed.
Rep. John Bel Edwards (D-72) complained that the governor's plan relied on seven bills, none of which have been filed one week before the legislative session is set to begin. He said Democrats did not plan to offer a tax reform bill, because he wasn't convinced the current tax code was broken.
Michael Reed, Jindal's deputy communications director, sent out an email after the press conference saying there was plenty of evidence the tax code needed revamping. It said Louisiana went into the hole on corporate income taxes by around $76 million last year, since only 12 percent of all corporations in the state which filed corporate income tax returns paid any taxes at all. He compared that to 94 percent of households in the state which did pay personal income tax.
News 2's Mike Steele will have more on lawmakers criticisms and reaction from the Jindal administration tonight starting at 5 p.m.