Ballantine affirms no-new-tax pledge

Republican gubernatorial candidate Patrick Ballantine has signed a second no-new-taxes pledge. Ballantine made the promise to the advocacy group FreedomWorks/Citizens for a Sound Economy. It says: “I pledge that in order to keep the burden of taxation in North Carolina no higher than its present level through the year 2008, I will not support new tax increases!”

The former New Hanover County senator has signed a similar pledge for the national group Americans for Tax Reform. Democratic Gov. Mike Easley has declined to sign similar pledges in the past, saying they deny elected officials the flexibility they might need in a fiscal crisis. —