Kansas Republican Governor Sam Brownback says he won’t sign a measure that won initial approval in the Kansas House Wednesday that would reinstate a third tax bracket.
“I am opposed to broad-based rate increases on income tax,” said Brownback. “I won’t sign that. It’s going against the trend of everywhere in the country, if not in the world. I don’t know why we would take a different route.”
Democrat Representative John Carmichael of Wichita expects the bill to easily pass on final action Thursday.
“It will pass by a strong bipartisan majority,” said Carmichael. “Should the Governor be so foolish as to ignore the will of the Legislature, and the reality of what’s happening in the state of Kansas, I think there is a very good likelihood that this bill, or one like it, will garner the necessary votes to override the Governor’s veto.”
Carmichael would like to see it resolved without that conflict, however.
“Notwithstanding that, I would hope that the Governor finally accepts reality, takes a second look, and learns from his mistakes, so that we don’t have to come to that point.”
The Governor later Wednesday released a statement about the bill’s passage.
“Today, the House moved forward on the Democratic tax bill that would pummel the pocketbook of middle class families. It drastically hikes taxes retroactively on workers making as little as $15,000 annually. While on the campaign trail many of these representatives pledged to raise taxes on the wealthy, but now they are attempting to tax everyday Kansans. It doesn’t have to be this way. I will continue the fight to keep your income taxes low.
This plan also unfairly raises taxes retroactively on Kansas job creators, sending a negative signal to businesses looking to start or relocate in Kansas. There is a better way. My budget solves the challenges of today, has solutions for tomorrow, and avoids punishing tax increases on middle class workers, families, and job creators.”
Brownback failed to mention in his Wednesday afternoon release that 46 Republicans of the 85 in the House voted for the measure, along with 37 of 40 Democrats, and that the bill was carried on the floor by Tax Committee chairman Steven Johnson, an Assaria Republican.