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Bill Richardson on Tax Reform

Democratic Governor (NM); Secretary of Commerce-Designee


Any tax increase must expire in 3 years or less

As we look to raise revenue to help us through this crisis, I will only support a temporary revenue increase that automatically expires in 3 years or less. I will oppose any tax increase that hurts our efforts to keep the state economically competitive and create new jobs--such as:
Source: New Mexico 2010 State of the State Address , Jan 19, 2010

End unfair & unequal tax structure for wealthiest 2%

Q: When are tax increases necessary & appropriate? And given the current deficit, which priorities would be worth asking Americans to pay more for?

A: Well, I think that 2% for the wealthiest Americans, that is unfair, unequal. That would go, in my objectives as president. But fiscally responsible budgets, I believe, are critical for economic growth. And we use the tax structure to incentivize the economy, to give preference to solar, wind, biomedical companies & aviation & companies of the future.

Source: 2007 Des Moines Register Democratic debate , Dec 13, 2007

Replace Bush tax cuts with cuts for middle class

Q: Do you agree that the rich aren’t paying their fair share of taxes?

A: There’s no question that there’s tax unfairness in this country, but we have to rebuild the economy. Yes, the Bush tax cuts have to go. But I would replace those Bush tax cuts with tax cuts for the middle class. We need to rebuild this economy by being pro-growth Democrats. We should be the party of innovation, of entrepreneurship, of building capital.

Source: 2007 Democratic Primary Debate at Howard University , Jun 28, 2007

Cut NM capital gains tax & income tax from 8.2% to 4.9%

I was convinced that tax cuts would improve the prospects for keeping talented people and businesses, attracting new enterprises, and kick-starting the entire state economy. Our state personal income tax before I got elected was more than 8 percent. Taking on the tax issue would reinforce the idea that I was a different kind of Democrat.

The legislature took up my tax package, which included the four-year cut in the personal income tax from 8.2% to 4.9 percent and a 50% cut in the capital gains tax, and the package passed the House without a single dissenting vote and the Senate by a margin of 39 to 2. I signed it into law on Valentine’s Day, 2003.

Source: Between Worlds, by Bill Richardson, p.304-306 , Nov 3, 2005

Continue to cut taxes and reform the tax code

We must continue to cut taxes, reform the tax code and invest in infrastructure by fully implementing the personal income tax cuts. I will also pursue targeted tax reform initiatives, including tax credits for creating high-wage jobs and technology start-ups. Let’s cut the tax on food & the tax on medical services. I promise to work with you to find a way to pay for these cuts, but let’s get it done now to help improve the quality of life for all New Mexicans, especially those who need it the most.
Source: 2004 State of the State speech to the New Mexico Legislature , Jan 20, 2004

Reduce income tax; create Taxpayer Bill of Rights

Source: Campaign website, RichardsonForGovernor.com, “Tax Reform” , Oct 15, 2002

$12B in federal economic stimulus as state block grants.

Richardson signed $12B in federal economic stimulus as state block grants

The nation's governors urge you to include state countercyclical funding as part of your legislation to stimulate the economy. This would include $6 billion in Medicaid assistance by freezing scheduled federal FMAP reductions and increasing all states' F Congress approved $20 billion in assistance to states, including $10 billion in Medicaid and $10 billion in block grants. The governors' current stimulus proposal is essentially the same, with the exception that it is a total of $12 billion as opposed to $20 billion. This proposal can be enacted quickly, as there is precedent and it is timely, temporary and targeted.

Additionally, governors appreciate federal efforts to use tax policy to get additional money into the hands of consumers and businesses to stimulate the economy. When considering tax changes to spur economic growth, governors urge Congress and the Administration to follow the maxim of "Do no harm" by avoiding changes at the federal level that would diminish state tax revenues or force state actions that would undermine the effectiveness of federal efforts.

We look forward to working with you to enact the appropriate stimulus program.

Source: Letter from 37 governors to House & Senate Leadership NGA-0801TX on Jan 28, 2008

Other governors on Tax Reform: Bill Richardson on other issues:
NM Gubernatorial:
Susana Martinez
NM Senatorial:
Tom Udall

Newly seated 2010:
NJ Chris Christie
VA Bob McDonnell

Term-limited as of Jan. 2011:
AL Bob Riley
CA Arnold Schwarzenegger
GA Sonny Perdue
HI Linda Lingle
ME John Baldacci
MI Jennifer Granholm
NM Bill Richardson
OK Brad Henry
OR Ted Kulongoski
PA Ed Rendell
RI Donald Carcieri
SC Mark Sanford
SD Mike Rounds
TN Phil Bredesen
WY Dave Freudenthal
Newly Elected Nov. 2010:
AL: Robert Bentley (R)
CA: Jerry Brown (D)
CO: John Hickenlooper (D)
CT: Dan Malloy (D)
FL: Rick Scott (R)
GA: Nathan Deal (R)
HI: Neil Abercrombie (D)
IA: Terry Branstad (R)
KS: Sam Brownback (R)
ME: Paul LePage (R)
MI: Rick Snyder (R)
MN: Mark Dayton (D)
ND: Jack Dalrymple (R)
NM: Susana Martinez (R)
NV: Brian Sandoval (R)
NY: Andrew Cuomo (D)
OH: John Kasich (R)
OK: Mary Fallin (R)
PA: Tom Corbett (R)
RI: Lincoln Chafee (I)
SC: Nikki Haley (R)
SD: Dennis Daugaard (R)
TN: Bill Haslam (R)
VT: Peter Shumlin (D)
WI: Scott Walker (R)
WY: Matt Mead (R)
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Contact info:
Fax number:
505-476-2200

Page last updated: Nov 21, 2011