State of Hawaii Archives: on Tax Reform

Marissa Kerns: I am opposing any new taxes for the next four years

Q: Do you support amending the state constitution to allow taxing investment properties to fund the public education system?

KERNS: No, I am opposing any new taxes for the next four years. Look now what happened to our Hawaiian taxpayer papaya exporters in the Big Island. It's a disgrace.

Source: Honolulu Civil Beat on 2022 Hawaii Senate race Oct 1, 2018

Ron Curtis: Make tax cuts for individuals permanent; no expiration

We need to revise the tax reform passed in 2017 to make the individual income tax cuts permanent. We also need to address the mortgage interest deduction cap of $750K. In July 2017, the average cost of a single family home in Hawaii was over $795K. Hawaii has the worst ratio of average housing costs per sq. ft. compared to average income in the nation. We need to revise the tax reform to take that ratio into account when calculating the income tax mortgage deduction caps for each state.
Source: 2018 Hawaii Senate campaign website Aug 8, 2018

Andria Tupola: Work on local tax policies; give more back to the people

Representative Tupola is introducing legislation to make the recently established state earned income tax credit refundable. "We have the 2nd highest tax burden in the country, and it's about time we start taking the burden off the people," said Tupola. "We have seen significant advances made by several private sector employers as they forecast the benefits of the tax cuts," said Tupola. "We need to continue reforming our local tax policies to give more money back to the people."
Source: Hawaii Free Press on 2018 Hawaii gubernatorial race Jan 16, 2018

David Ige: State must operate within its means instead of raising taxes

We must take care of business first. As Governor, I will submit a balanced budget to the Legislature. As the Chair of the Senate Ways & Means Committee for the past four years I crafted a balanced budget in each of those years. During that time I reduced the current Governor's spending proposals by a total of $1 billion. That is why the State now enjoys an $800 million surplus.

I also rejected the current Governor's proposal to tax retirees' pensions. I refused to balance the budget on the backs of seniors. In addition, I rejected his proposals to tax soda and plastic bags, as well as his attempts to raise the Transient Accommodations Tax by an additional 2%. This would have raised the cost of a Hawai'i vacation for tourists, making Hawai'i less competitive among visitor destinations throughout the world. My philosophy in budgeting is that the State must operate within its means instead of raising taxes. I will not propose new programs when our state budget lacks the resources to pay for them.

Source: 2014 Hawaii gubernatorial campaign website Aug 9, 2014

Neil Abercrombie: Add alcohol & soft drink tax; repeal state tax deduction

I am proposing 2 fixes to the tax code that will increase revenues to the state. One is a repeal of the state tax deduction for state taxes--an absurdity in the tax code, the elimination of which is long overdue. This change will affect all taxpayers who itemize, so we will phase in implementation for middle-income earners to lessen the immediate effect.

The other fix is to implement the recommendation of the Tax Review Commission to treat pension income like all other income for tax purposes, as is done when preparing federal taxes. My proposal includes a provision so those who are most dependent on their pensions will not be taxed.

I am proposing what is an overdue increase in the alcohol tax and will also propose a fee on soda & similar drinks. We can no longer ignore the fact that consumption of these & other such products contribute to rising public health costs. Revenues from these fees will be used to repair the public health infrastructure and also to fund prevention and education programs

Source: 2011 Hawaii State of the State Address Jan 24, 2011

Duke Aiona: Shift taxes from low-income families to higher-income

Aiona adds, "A fair, broad-based, and transparent tax system, coupled with fiscally responsible policies, will enable government to provide services more efficiently and within its means. For example, we need to take a deeper look at certain activities that have received special tax exemptions. We also need to ensure that those who owe taxes pay their fair share via vigorous enforcement and follow-up."
Source: Hawaii Gubernatorial Election 2010 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2010

Daniel Akaka: The Bush tax cuts helped the richest, not those in need

Q: Do you favor making the tax cuts permanent?

A: We cannot make tax cuts permanent. Already this year itís projected that we will have a deficit of $600 billion. And this will be passed on. We have to borrow money from China and now Japan as well. The Bush administration took us from a surplus to a multi-trillion dollar federal deficit, and government should be taking care of those in need help the most and not take care of the richest.

Source: 2006 HI Senate Debate on PBS Hawaii Aug 31, 2006

Ed Case: Bush tax cuts unaffordable; targeted middle-class cuts ok

Q: Do you favor making the tax cuts permanent?

A: I voted against that initiative. It was unaffordable, especially as we had already intervened in Iraq, and one could see that was going to be far more expensive than anybody projected. I had voted against some tax cut extensions, especially those for the very upper income families, because I donít think itís fair, or necessary. But I have voted for some extensions that I think have very targeted purposes and are targeted for the middle class.

Source: 2006 HI Senate Debate on PBS Hawaii Aug 31, 2006

Brian Schatz: No state flat tax; increase sin tax & decrease sales tax

Source: Hawaii Legislative 1996 National Political Awareness Test Nov 1, 1996

  • The above quotations are from State of Hawaii Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Tax Reform.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2020 Presidential contenders on Tax Reform:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
Please consider a donation to!
Click for details -- or send donations to:
1770 Mass Ave. #630, Cambridge MA 02140
(We rely on your support!)

Page last updated: Oct 12, 2021