Poizner Signs Anti-Tax Pledge Despite History of Supporting Tax Hikes

SoCal radio wags John and Ken got California GOP gubernatorial candidate Steve Poizner to sign a no tax pledge this week. This is momentous news, indeed, since Poizner, the current State Insurance Commissioner and putative GOP frontrunner, has a long, long history of supporting massive property tax hikes that he has yet to directly disavow.

Radio talkers John and Ken witnessed Poizner’s signing of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge during their Los Angeles based show this week. (See photos here.)

As he signed the pledge, Poizner told the radio talkers, “Not only will I not raise taxes, not only will I veto every attempt to raise taxes, I will lower taxes for the people of the state of California. You can count on that.”

Poizner joins 34 U.S. Senators and 172 members of the House of Representatives as well as 7 state governors and over 1,100 state legislators in signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. The pledge commits signers to, “oppose and veto any and all efforts to increase taxes.”

Americans for Tax Reform’s Grover Norquist has already issued praise for Poizner’s actions. Norquist says that this is great news for Golden State residents who are’ “desperately searching for candidates and politicians that will protect their livelihoods and put their wallets ahead of government coffers.”

“By signing the Pledge, Steve Poizner demonstrates his commitment to the hardworking and heavily taxed citizens of California. I applaud him for his leadership and dedication to the ideals of limited government and pro-growth policies,” added Norquist. “I strongly encourage, and challenge, every candidate for state and federal office to sign the Pledge.”

This is all well and good, but the truth is Steve Poizner has a long, long history of supporting massive tax hikes. He has been behind several attempts to roll back prop 13, a proposition that puts a cap on raising Californian’s property taxes. Not only that, but Poizner has in the past also donated many thousands of dollars to Democratic candidates and causes. He even donated money to help Al Gore challenge the 2000 election, though Poizner says these donations were made by his wife and not him.

As to taxes, Poizner has supported the long-held policy of raising taxes through his EdVoice organization, the education advocacy group he helped found. He was also a supporter and big donor of nearly $200,000 to the drive for prop 39 and also supported another 2005 property tax raising measure.

But now that he’s running for governor, suddenly Steve Poizner is an anti-tax crusader?

Well, if he sticks with this stance throughout his tenure as governor, then the people of California come out well. All I am saying is that his history is far different than this new anti-tax image. Let’s hope Steve Poizner lives up to his new commitment.

There is a bright spot about this pledge signing, though. Poizner is the only one that ha signed it. Neither Whitman nor Campbell has done so. This gives us hope too.

(Cross posted at RedCounty.com.)

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