Last week, the defacto leader of the Republican party and also its chief scold and whip, Grover Norquist, gave a stern warning to any Wisconsin Republican who dare violate his tax pledge. Norquist's incursion came soon after Sen. Tim Cullen proposed a tonnage tax on mining companies for any extracted mineral resources taken from Wisconsin land.
"For those of you who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, a new tonnage tax is a violation of that pledge."
As expected, Gov. Scott Walker, a Norquist devotee, straightened up to attention and quickly injected that there was no way he would allow the tax.
The tonnage tax — which is already in use with much success in Minnesota and Michigan — would have become a national model if passed in Wisconsin for budget-short states to raise new revenue without taxing its residents. But with Norquist in the picture, the people of Wisconsin have no chance in mining new tax revenue from companies that take from the land.
Despite the loss, Sen. Tim Cullen deserves a hat tip on this one.
Superior Telegram -Norquist, Walker Against Democrats’ Mining Tax Bill