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Temecula Activists Stage Impromptu Cap and Tax Protest
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Temecula Activists Stage Impromptu Cap and Tax Protest

This past Saturday, June 27, a group of Temecula, CA free-market activists led by Bridget Blanton staged a spur of the moment protest against the cap and trade legislation that passed the House the previous evening.  The demonstrators urged passerby to get involved and call their Senators as the legislation progresses.  

06/29/2009
Key Vote No: H.R. 2454 American Clean Energy and Security Act
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Press Release

Key Vote No: H.R. 2454 American Clean Energy and Security Act

On behalf of hundreds of thousands of FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to vote “No” on H.R. 2454, the Waxman-Markey “American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009.”  H.R. 2454 calls for a “cap and trade” system for the regulation of greenhouse gases, and is in essence, a tax that will drive up energy costs across the board.  The best projections estimate that the climate bill would result in a barely measurable 0.05 degree Celsius temperature “savings” over the next fifty years.  In the meantime, over those fifty years, the economic effect would be far more tangible and disastrous.Independent experts estimate that in the next eight years the legislation will take $2 trillion dollars from our economy, redistributing it to powerful, favored institutions through a complex regulatory scheme with standards that are impossible to meet, as has been found in other countries with similar systems in place.  Actually doing so would set our economy back over 130 years to 1875, the last recorded time our carbon-emissions met the legislation’s goals. At a cost of any where from $750 to over $3,000 a year per family, the price is far too high for so little in return. High energy prices affect everything from heating, electricity, and fuel prices to agriculture, manufacturers, and shipping costs.  These are the unavoidable costs of living and the burden of this legislation will fall most heavily on the poor who spend a higher percentage of their income on these essentials making cap and trade a regressive tax that forces impossible decisions between food and the drive to work.The astronomical costs of this bill and the unachievable caps that cripple many industries such as farmers and miners will mean the loss of many jobs as manufacturers, shippers, and others are forced to scale back, close, or send jobs overseas.  While the prospect of numerous new “green” jobs has been widely touted, a recent study by economist Gabriel Calzada has found that for every one green job, 2.2 other jobs are lost or not created.  Each of those jobs comes at an enormous subsidy that pours money from the private sector into an overpriced, inefficient industry.  An economy suffering from massive losses of jobs and wealth, and strapped with a staggering deficit cannot afford a plan that would exacerbate these problems. Promised cleaner alternatives to our current fossil-fuel based technology are still years out of reach.  Rolling back regulations that stifle alternatives like nuclear would be a less costly option.On behalf of our FreedomWorks activists, I again urge you to vote “No” on H.R. 2454 and will count your vote as a KEY VOTE when calculating the FreedomWorks Economic Freedom Scorecard for 2009.  The FreedomWorks Economic Freedom Scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the Jefferson Award, which recognizes members of Congress with voting records that support economic freedom.

06/25/2009
Warren Buffet: Cap and Trade a Huge Tax
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Blog

Warren Buffet: Cap and Trade a Huge Tax

Buffet explains how Cap and Tax hurts the poor and our economy.  H/t: Club for Growth  

06/24/2009
The First Rule of Budget Holes: Stop Digging
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The First Rule of Budget Holes: Stop Digging

In a familiar storyline, Pennsylvania lawmakers are seeking to close a budget gap of some $3.2 billion by—you guessed it—raising taxes. To that end, Governor Ed Rendell has called for a “modest” hike of 16 percent in the state income tax rate from 3.07 to 3.57 percent for the next three years. Similar “temporary” tax hikes, implemented in 1983 and 1991, have yet to be fully repealed.

06/24/2009
Help Stop New Tax Hikes in California
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Press Release

Help Stop New Tax Hikes in California

Just over a month ago, Californians went to the polls and delivered a resounding “No tax hikes” to their state leaders.  Legislators have had four weeks to come up with a better plan that will work for the state and guess what their solution is?More tax hikes!  Take Action and tell your lawmakers more tax hikes are unacceptable.That’s right, more tax hikes.  Except that these are different tax hikes they think the public won’t see through, regardless of the fact that it’s always the same folks who end up footing the bill.  Tax proposals now on the table include $2.2 billion in various taxes on business, a 9.9 percent tax on oil extraction, and a massive $1.50/pack cigarette tax hike.California legislators must think the taxpayers are pretty gullible to swallow this new plan.  Taxing business, just when many are fleeing the high taxes of the state, when others are bleeding jobs and struggling in the current economy is a terrible idea. Taxing oil extraction falls in the same category.  It isn’t some faceless corporation that drills for energy – it’s people who could use those jobs.  And it isn’t just some entity in the sky that absorbs those high taxes – it’s people who will have to pay at the pump.Cigarette tax hikes are a selfish cash grab that tries to put the economic woes of a state on a small, often-targeted minority.  They also hurt small businesses as people go across statelines, or to the black market and internet for cheaper cigarettes.No one would deny that California is in a bind.  But this is a problem that can’t be taxed away.  When these tax sources dry up, and if history is any guide they certainly will, legislators will simply tax something else.  Legislators were elected to do a job and that means making tough decisions, not just creating more taxes for the group that drew the short straw that day.  Spending has far outpaced growth in the state.  In good years, California’s government spent as if the revenue would never end rather than keeping spending in line with priorities. Take Action and urge your legislators not to seek quick fixes that will only push the problem down the road a short ways, but to stop playing favorites with programs and benefits and do the real cutting that needs that be done.  During hard times, every family has to cut back.  There’s no reason why governments shouldn’t do the same.

06/23/2009
Stop Soda Tax for Government-Run Health Care
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Press Release

Stop Soda Tax for Government-Run Health Care

Whether you call it soda or pop, another tax scheme has just emerged from the House Ways and Means Committee to fund a massive government run health care scheme.  This time it’s a 10 cent tax on each can of soda.  That number sounds familiar because President Obama pledged as recently as February that no family earning less than $250,000 would see its taxes increased by “a single dime.

06/19/2009
500 Rally in Raleigh Against Tax Hikes
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500 Rally in Raleigh Against Tax Hikes

Over 500 people from all over North Carolina gathered on June 16 to protest the tax hikes being proposed in the state legislature.  So far the list includes a cigarette tax hike and a tax on web-advertising.  The group braved the rain to tell the legislators not to raise taxes.Check out all the great pictures below: 

06/18/2009
Help Stop a New Internet Tax Scheme in Louisiana
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Press Release

Help Stop a New Internet Tax Scheme in Louisiana

Politicians in Baton Rouge are quickly trying to rush through a new, multi-million dollar internet tax hike that proponents are claiming will help crack down on internet crimes such as child pornography and fraud.TAKE ACTION! HB 569 will impose a $.15 per month fee on bills from internet service providers to fund a new “Internet Crimes Investigation Fund.”  The bill recently passed the Louisiana House and will be heard in the Senate this week.Cracking down on crime, and particularly crimes involving children, is a noble cause indeed.  But HB 569 is the wrong approach.Lawmakers supporting this legislation are rushing to a big-government solution, even without allowing state law enforcement agencies adequate time to evaluate what they truly need.  No credible studies have been produced to justify the creation of this new fund and the tax increase it requires.  At the same time more localized efforts to combat online crimes have enjoyed success by better utilizing existing resources.  For example, the Northwest Louisiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force has been extremely successful while operating on about $150,000 to $200,000 a year and relying on cooperation from a host of local law enforcement and district attorney’s offices in the region. Legislators need to think innovatively and prioritize projects instead of simply looking to expand government on the backs of hard-working Louisiana taxpayers.  The size of the proposed new Internet Crimes fund may seem modest at this point, but just creating it opens the door to a slippery-slope of new government spending.  We’ve all seen how bureaucracies can so easily grow out-of-control and as well-intentioned as they might be, turn into government slush-funds with taxpayers on the hook. Don’t let politicians use the idea of keeping children safe to cram more big government down your throat.  TAKE ACTION NOW before the Senate takes up HB 569 and tell them to oppose this new internet tax hike scheme!

06/15/2009
Help Stop Delaware Tax Hikes
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Press Release

Help Stop Delaware Tax Hikes

Delaware is the latest state to jump on the tax hike bandwagon with a plan to raise taxes on cigarettes and alcohol to bridge a looming budget gap.  These so-called “sin taxes” seem to be the first place politicians go for some quick cash anytime they can’t pay the bills.  Take Action and urge your lawmakers to oppose tax hikes and pursue real long-term growth policies.A recent proposal would raise alcohol taxes by two cents per 12-ounce can of beer, three cents per 5-ounce serving of wine, and 15 cents per bottle of liquor. The state cigarette tax would see a $.45/pack hike.Delaware doesn’t need to go down the path of higher taxes that nickel-and-dime citizens.  State legislators need only look up I-95 to New Jersey to see the effect cigarette tax hikes have on the budget.  A Heartland Institute study shows that for two years running, the tax hikes have led to reduced revenues, not the millions the state was banking on.  New Jersey was left with a still gaping budget hole and businesses were hurt as smokers turned to the Internet, Indian Reservations, and the black market for lower priced cigarettes.  This is a common scenario when legislators go after a minority of citizens for the funding woes of a state.  The picture is the same when you look at alcohol taxes.  Raising those taxes hurts businesses as well.  Already, the hospitality industry is bleeding jobs during this economic downturn.  The last thing they need is higher taxes!Governor Markell is hoping these proposals bring in over $20 million, a drop in the bucket when Delaware is facing an $800 million gap for 2010.  But looking at other states who have tried the same tax and spend schemes, that money won’t be there and taxpayers will be again left holding the bag – only now with a much bigger price tag.  Take Action and tell your legislators to avoid these tax gimmicks altogether.  Delaware has a great history of tax competition and economic liberty that has allowed that state to thrive.  Keeping spending in check is a far better way to maintain long-term growth than going down the tax-hike road where other states have become stuck.

06/15/2009
A Flat Debate on the Flat Tax
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A Flat Debate on the Flat Tax

In comments to the Sacramento Bee late last week, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger magnanimously agreed to consider a proposal to maybe discuss a flat tax rate on income in California. Much like similarly surprising talk of ending marijuana prohibition, the news makes for great headlines, but taxpayers should avoid any real optimism for the time being.While Schwarzenegger cleverly pays lip service to what some consider the holy grail of tax code reform, at a suggested flat rate of 15 percent, he has actually proposed a massive tax increase. Currently, even the wealthiest Californians pay “only” 9.3 percent. In the seven states where a flat tax is already in effect, the average rate is just 4.1 percent.

06/10/2009

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