RSS Democrats

April 27, 2017 2:07 PM

Trump Tax Ideas – Real Reform?

We finally have an outline of President Trump’s tax proposals, but not the gritty details.  From what we can glean so far, the president wants to lower rates for everyone, including corporation. He wants to enact a big increase in the standard deduction up to $24,000 for married couples, gutting personal deductions other than home mortgage interest and charitable contributions.  Personal tax rates would be reduced to three brackets – 10%, 25% & 35%.  Corporate…

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April 25, 2017 2:58 PM

Goodbye and good riddance to HEA 1523

Gov. Eric Holcomb deserves applause for his swift veto of HEA 1523, the legislation that would have allowed public agencies to charge a search fee for public records requests. He joined his predecessor, former Gov. Mike Pence, in refusing to give public agencies another tool to obstruct public oversight. In his letter to House Speaker Brian Bosma, Holcomb wrote: “Providing access to public records is a key part of the work public servants perform and is…

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April 4, 2017 11:16 AM

The Indiana Electoral College

A few weeks ago, Bloomington Representative Matt Pierce unsuccessfully introduced an amendment to add Indiana to the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. That’s the effort to circumvent the Electoral College by having states promise their electors to the national popular vote winner – once enough states have signed to give that winner the magic 270. In making his case, Pierce challenged majority Republicans: “How would you like it if we elected the governor based on…

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April 2, 2017 6:08 PM

Boomers vs. Millennials

As a member of the baby boom generation, I must come to a sad conclusion – the boomers have largely made a mess of things.  I can only hope the millennials will do a better job. We boomers grew up during the 1950s and 1960s.  We did accomplish some things, but on balance, we have provided America and Indiana with badly split politics and governmental inertia. There is some debate about how to define millennials,…

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March 26, 2017 2:32 PM

Mr. President – Do You Really Think Tax Reform Will Be Easier?

President Trump seems to be saying that the Republican health care idea didn’t work out so well, so let’s do something easier, like tax reform.  Our nation’s chief executive is likely to find an even riskier political mine field taking on taxes. First, let’s clarify that tax cuts and tax reform are two very different things.  Tax cuts can be part of tax reform, but just cutting taxes is not reform. If all Trump wants…

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March 9, 2017 5:34 PM

Sticks and stones, softly

I hope I’ll never utter sexist slurs against Kellyanne Conway or send death threats to Indiana Congressman Luke Messer, and I won’t bother to take up the free-speech sword on behalf of those who do. At the same time, though,  I don’t much feel much like joining the chorus of mainstream folks, liberal and conservative, who’ve themselves embraced the right-wing umbrage over these latest episodes of nastiness toward men and women in power who wield…

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March 7, 2017 5:48 PM

Taking the Temperature on Capitol Hill

After spending a few days in Washington, there was one word spoken often by Congressional staffers – uncertainty.  No one knows how the big issues will handled by this President and this Congress. Tax reform is something nearly all elected officials say they want.  So, you would think passage of a new tax overhaul will happen this year? It’s unlikely, for one big reason.  Although there is a consensus tax reform is needed, there is…

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February 16, 2017 4:04 PM

Sad Day for Democracy

You may not have heard about it in the news, but democracy lost a round at the Statehouse yesterday afternoon. Hundreds of Hoosiers packed the fourth floor of our capitol to attend the Indiana House Elections and Apportionment committee hearing, where a bill to end partisan gerrymandering was under consideration. I was one of them, and I found myself surrounded by optimistic citizen activists. For many of them, this was the first hearing they had…

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February 9, 2017 4:06 PM

Evolution of a Trump Conservative

January of last year I wrote a column to decry the oft-used liberal pejorative of “racist” towards anyone that disagrees with them. In that column, I also stated that I was not, and never would be a Trump supporter, but calling him a racist was unfair because it was untrue. Later that year, on November 8th, 2016 I proudly cast a vote for the Republican ticket of Donald Trump for President and Mike Pence for…

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February 8, 2017 5:43 PM

The Clouds Forming Over American Jobs

Donald Trump visited Indianapolis as president elect to announce some, but not all, of the jobs at the local Carrier plant would be preserved and not shipped to Mexico. If President Trump is concerned about American jobs in the longer term, he will heed the advice of an economist and form a blue-ribbon commission aimed at studying how America should react to a coming technological revolution. Ed Hess, professor at the University of Virginia’s Darden…

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