State of California Archives: on Tax Reform

Kevin Faulconer: Incumbent backed higher taxes and destroyed jobs

I'm running for governor because it's time for a California comeback. Our state, so full of promise, has become the land of broken promises. And the promise-breaker-in-chief is Gov. Gavin Newsom. Newsom promised equality, but he has presided over some of the worst inequality in the nation. He promised prosperity but backed high costs and higher taxes and destroyed jobs.
Source: San Diego Union Tribune on 2021 California recall race Feb 12, 2021

Tom Steyer: Oppose legislative supermajority for raising fees & levies

Source: on California ballot measure voting records Jul 2, 2019

Tom Steyer: Tax surcharge on personal incomes over $250,000

Source: on California ballot measure voting records Jul 2, 2019

John Cox: Roll back tide of tax increases & job killing regulations

For years, the Sacramento politicians have been socking it to middle class taxpayers and small business owners. Fueled by the corrupting influence of special interest money, career politicians have saddled us with among the highest income taxes, sales taxes, and gas taxes in the country. They have piled on so many taxes, fees and regulations, that they have made it impossible to build affordable housing, while driving thousands of businesses and good paying jobs out of state. I am a conservative small businessman running for Governor to roll back the tide of tax increases and job killing regulations that have made California unaffordable.

When our California congressional Republicans asked me to serve as Chairman of the real campaign to repeal the gas tax, I gladly accepted-- because it's time to fight back, and end the war on the middle class.

Source: IVP Network on 2018 California gubernatorial race Mar 20, 2018

John Cox: California is over-taxed and over-regulated

It's time to fight back, not by trying to out-spend and out-tax the Democrats, but by taking our government back. The only possible way to rescue California from a likely financial melt-down is to unshackle small business, roll back oppressive regulations and focus on economic growth.
Source: 2018 California Gubernatorial website Sep 1, 2017

Travis Allen: California must cut taxes

As a financial advisor, Travis knows how to make tough choices. The 13.3% state income tax rate is the highest in the nation. Our state sales tax of 7.25% is also the highest in the nation--and when you factor in local taxes, sales tax in some cities can reach as high as 10%. If that wasn't enough, California also pays among the highest gas taxes and highest car registration fees in the nation. We must repeal Jerry Brown's gas tax and cut taxes for all Californians.
Source: 2018 California Gubernatorial website Sep 1, 2017

Gavin Newsom: Supports tax hikes for public good

Newsom said he was supportive of the recently-adopted $52 billion gas tax hike to build up the state's infrastructure. He also supports leaning more heavily on taxpayers to fund colleges rather than increase tuition costs.
Source: The Ceres Courier on 2018 California gubernatorial race Mar 30, 2017

Ro Khanna: Rewrite antiquated tax code that stacks the deck

As we slowly recover from the Great Recession, the wealthy are doing better than ever while thousands across the South Bay are struggling like never before. We need a coherent economic vision that will provide economic opportunity to all Americans willing to work hard.

Just look at our antiquated tax code--it was written for a 1960s economy and is failing us today. It incentivizes companies to locate overseas while giving oil companies tax breaks and subsidies. At the same time, an impossibly complex bureaucracy has piled on burdensome and duplicative regulations that have stacked the deck against small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Our country needs bold leadership to ensure America maintains its position as the most productive and innovative nation on earth. My comprehensive economic agenda will increase our manufacturing and exporting capacity, and reward entrepreneurs who take risks and keep our economy dynamic--all while strengthening our middle class.

Source: 2016 California House campaign website Nov 8, 2016

Ro Khanna: Our tax policy benefits the top 1% of Americans

Over the past 30 years, Congress has designed tax policy that benefits the top one percent of Americans at the expense of working people and their families. The primary goal of any tax code should be to incentivize growth, promote fairness, and raise the revenue necessary to fund public services and critical investments.

As a member of Congress, I will push for comprehensive tax reform to curtail ballooning inequality and make tax credit compliance easier for working families and small businesses. The growth of special deductions, exclusions, and tax breaks for the wealthy increase the time and resources individuals must spend on calculations and documentation requirements to pay their taxes.

Congress also needs to reform the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) to protect middle class taxpayers. What we have right now is an antiquated tax regime that is unfair, hurts our competitiveness, and has been manipulated repeatedly by narrow special interests.

Source: 2016 California House campaign website Nov 8, 2016

Kamala Harris: Expand EITC, Child Tax Credit, and R&D Tax Credit

Source: 2016 California Senate campaign website, Aug 31, 2016

Jerry Brown: California needs a larger Rainy Day Fund

The next recession, even if it were only of average intensity, would cut our revenues by $55 billion over three years. That is why it is imperative to build up the Rainy Day Fund--which was recently overwhelmingly approved by the voters--and invest our temporary surpluses in badly needed infrastructure or in other ways that will not lock in future spending. California has a very progressive but volatile income tax that provides 70 percent of General Fund revenues. If we are to minimize the zigzag of spend-cut-spend that this tax system inevitably produces, we must build a very large reserve.
Source: 2016 State of the State speech to California legislature Jan 21, 2016

Tom Del Beccaro: Personal & corporate flat tax: 15.5% federal and 6% state

Del Beccaro is following the model of Gov. Jerry Brown, who ran for president in 1992 on a pledge to create a 13% tax across the board. A statement from the Del Beccaro campaign explained his plan in further detail: Del Beccaro's state proposal includes: Source: weblog on 2016 California Senate race Oct 2, 2015

Mimi Walters: Fight to reduce taxes & reckless spending

Taxpayers should not be blamed for the government's reckless spending. Increasing taxes harms our economy and costs jobs. Throughout my career I have fought to reduce taxes and will continue to do so as a member of Congress. Lower taxes will create more economic growth, which in turn will create more prosperity.
Source: 2014 California House campaign website, Oct 10, 2014

Jerry Brown: Only choice is raise taxes to deal with extreme difficulty

At this moment of extreme difficulty, it behooves us to turn to the people and get a clear mandate on how we should proceed: either to extend the taxes as I fervently believe or cut deeply into the programs from which--under federal law--we can still extract the sums required.

From the time I first proposed what I believe to be a balanced approach to our budget deficit--both cuts and a temporary extension of current taxes--dozens of groups affected by one or another of the proposed cuts have said w should cut somewhere else instead. Still others say we should not extend the current taxes but let them go away. So far, however, these same people have failed to offer even one alternative solution.

Wherever I look, I see difficult choices. But I also see a bright future up ahead and a California economy that is on the mend.

Source: 2011 California State of the State Address Jan 31, 2011

Gloria La Riva: Increase tax rate for high incomes; no tax below $50,000

Q: Do you support the elimination of the federal estate tax?


Q: Do you support requiring the federal budget to be balanced each year?


Q: Do you support using government funds in an effort to stimulate and improve the economy?


La Riva adds, "I believe the tax rate for high income people, both Capital Gains and Income Taxes, should be greatly increased. Households making under $50,000 should have their taxes eliminated."

Source: California Congressional 2010 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2010

Arnold Schwarzenegger: Our economy is 21st century & our tax system is 20th century

The basic problem is that our tax system does not reflect our economy. In 2009, California's economic growth declined only by 2.8% but our tax revenues were down more than eight times that much.

Our economy is diverse, whereas our tax system is not; 144,000 taxpayers pay almost 50% of all personal income taxes. Now, think about that--38 million Californians have to rely on 144,000 people for their schools, their public safety and so many other services. That makes absolutely no sense.

Now, here is what we need to accept. Our economy is 21st century and our tax system is 20th century. It is stuck in the wrong century.

The Tax Reform Commission proposed major, radical reforms. Now, some people right away said they are too bold and thu they would be too hard to enact. Now, what do they mean too bold? Bold is what we do in California. And what do they mean too hard? If I had hesitated in my career every time I made a move because it was too hard, I would still be yodeling in Austria.

Source: California 2010 State of the State Address Jan 6, 2010

Carly Fiorina: Taxpayer Protection Pledge: no new or increased taxes

Carly has signed the Americans for Tax Reform Taxpayer Protection Pledge promising that, as a U.S. senator, she will not vote for any new or increased taxes on California's citizens or enterprises. As it is, the federal government already takes a significant chunk out of every American's paycheck, and there's little transparency with respect to how those taxpayer dollars are being spent.
Source: 2010 Senate campaign website, Dec 25, 2009

Bill Jones: Extend the Bush tax cuts

I support extending the President’s tax cuts because we need to provide stable tax incentives for our job creators to invest in California and the US You do this by providing long-term tax rate reduction. We do not grow the economy or provide the jobs needed by the population if we continue to have unstable tax policies. The President’s tax cuts will lower the tax bills for 12.4 million Californians this year. Eleven million more will benefit from the new 10% bracket.
Source: 2004 Senate campaign website “Issues” Oct 15, 2004

Bill Jones: Move beyond tax cuts to tax simplification

We must move beyond tax cuts to tax simplification. Since President Reagan’s dramatic tax simplification proposals, the federal tax code has grown out of control. The tax system is now riddled with billions of dollars in special grants and other forms of “corporate welfare” that have developed to compensate for unintended consequences. We must make the rules simpler, the tax burden fairer, & move to a code that allows us to reduce the overall costs to our families, our employers, and the federal budget.
Source: 2004 Senate campaign website “Issues” Oct 15, 2004

  • The above quotations are from State of California Politicians: Archives.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Tax Reform:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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Page last updated: Oct 12, 2021