August 19, 2017 News & Press Releases · Press Releases and Announcements

Virginia Democrats’ Statement on Ed Gillespie’s Speech at the Americans for Prosperity Summit in Richmond

by Democratic Party of Virginia

Virginia Democrats’ Statement on Ed Gillespie’s Speech at the Americans for Prosperity Summit in Richmond

Richmond, Va. — Below is a statement from the Democratic Party of Virginia on Ed Gillespie’s remarks at the Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity summit:

“If Ed Gillespie wants to be serious about condemning hate, he needs to start by denouncing Donald Trump’s horrific defense of the white supremacists in Charlottesville. Instead of finally calling out the president, Gillespie spent this afternoon touting his widely derided, half-baked tax proposal,” said DPVA spokesperson Kevin Donohoe.“Gillespie’s economic agenda is nothing more than a poorly disguised Trump-style giveaway to wealthy Virginians at the expense of everyone else. Even Virginia Republicans think it’s a terrible idea. Gillespie’s tax plan would help wealthy people like the Kochs but could lead to steep cuts in transportation, healthcare, and education. Similar policies have failed in states like Kansas and struggled to gain enough support to pass a Republican-controlled Congress in D.C.. Why does Ed Gillespie think they would work in Virginia?”  

Gillespie’s “Phony Math” Tax Plan Will Help The Rich, And Similar Policies Brought Cuts To Public Education And Transportation, Not Job Growth, To Other States

Gillespie’s Plan Would Give The Richest One Percent $3,200 A Year, While Giving A Minimum Wage Worker With Two Children Just $42 A Year. “The Gillespie campaign’s proposal would give the top 1 percent almost $3,200 a year, while a family of four with an income of $50,000 would get just $246 and a minimum wage worker with two kids just $42.” [Commonwealth Institute, 3/16/17]

Republican Frank Wagner Said Gillespie’s Plan Relied On “Dishonest, Phony Math,” And “Washington Insider Math.” “State Sen. Frank Wagner opened up with both barrels this week on fellow GOP gubernatorial hopeful Ed Gillespie's tax plan, saying Gillespie's pitch is based on ‘dishonest, phony math.’ Pressed to show its math, the Gillespie campaign pointed to a think tank in the Boston suburbs and a computer model using ‘thousands of equations solved simultaneously’ to look into the future of Virginia's economy. It predicts a boost in household wealth and, thus, higher impact for Gillespie's promised income tax cut. ‘Quite frankly dishonest,’ Wagner said. ‘It's Washington math. Washington insider math.’” [Daily Press, 5/1/17]

  • Kansas Republican On Tax Cuts Creating An Economic Utopia: “That’s Not How It Works, As It Turns Out.” “[Stephanie Clayton, a Republican state representative] criticized what she said was a desire by her party to be more faithful to the principle than to the people Republicans were elected to help. Mr. Brownback and many conservatives, she said, overpromised on the tax cuts as a ‘sort-of Ayn Rand utopia, a red-state model,’ citing the author whose works have influenced the American libertarian movement.  ‘And I loved Ayn Rand when I was 18 — before I had children and figured out how the world really works,’ Ms. Clayton added. ‘That’s not how it works, as it turns out.’” [New York Times,7/2/17]

Ed Gillespie Relies On Math From The Beacon Hill Institute To Estimate That His Plan Would Create 50,000 New Jobs. “Modeling conducted by the Thomas Jefferson Institute and economists that built its tax model at the Beacon Hill Institute shows what this needed plan will do. Lead to $1,285 in additional disposable income for a household of four when fully phased in. Lead to more than 53,649 new full-time private-sector jobs – an expected 25 percent increase over current job growth projections.” [Gillespie for Governor, Accessed 6/15/17] 

  • Beacon Hill Institute Predicted Kansas’ Tax Plan Would Create 41,690 New Jobs. “Standard Model predicts 41,690 new jobs created, $85 million more business investment and $1.8 billion in additional disposable income.” [Beacon Hill Institute and Kansas Policy Institute, July 2012]

  • Washington Post: “The Fast Growth That The [Kansas] Tax Cuts Were Supposed To Generate Never Appeared.” “The state limited eligibility for welfare and instilled a lifetime ban on welfare recipients who broke certain rules. It dramatically lowered taxes, by reducing the number of income tax brackets in the state from three to two and slashing rates on both. It also exempted small-business income from taxation entirely — creating what analysts described as a pernicious loophole when individuals started representing themselves as small businesses to qualify. Yet the fast growth that the state's tax cuts were supposed to generate never appeared. In each of the past five years, the pace of economic expansion in Kansas has been below that of the country as a whole.” [Washington Post, 6/14/17]

  • Instead, The Plan “Blew A Substantial Hole In The State’s Budget, Turning Long-Standing Budget Surpluses Into Yawning Shortfalls.”“The policies also blew a substantial hole in the state’s budget, turning long-standing budget surpluses into yawning shortfalls. To pay its debt, the state government delayed payments to school boards and local agencies, canceled or delayed road maintenance and put off payments to pension funds.” [Washington Post, 6/14/17]

  • The Plan Forced Cuts To Transportation And Public Education. “In 2015, Brownback and Republicans in Topeka increased the sales tax to raise more money. Sales taxes are disproportionately paid by the poor, who spend more of their money on everyday goods that are subject to the tax. Last year, with the reserves all but exhausted, the state drew down $400 million from other sources, the bulk of it from the highway fund, and put off making payments totaling about $200 million. It wasn't enough. This March, Kansas's Supreme Court ruled that the lack of support for public schools violated the state's constitution, and ordered the government to increase funds. ‘That’s essentially lawmakers shaking the couch cushions for change,’ said Duane Goossen, the state’s former budget director.” [Washington Post, 6/14/17]