Bass For Congress - Kuster Continues to Dance around Her Position on NH Income Tax

Kuster Proudly Supports Tax Hikes at Federal Level

Concord, NH – Liberal activist Annie Kuster’s long record of fighting to impose an income tax in New Hampshire, as well as her strident support to raise income and other taxes at the federal level, tell voters exactly what she will fight for in Congress, Congressman Charlie Bass (NH-02) told reporters today.   Bass spoke at a press conference in Concord, joined by Peter and Rob Thomson, sons of the late former Governor Meldrim Thomson, Jr., who is well-known as one of New Hampshire’s greatest leaders against a state income tax. Kuster, who described Governor Thompson as a "worm" in the press, has actively fought his legacy by trying to help candidates favoring a state income tax get elected, directing political action committee funds to their campaigns.

Despite her long record of pushing for a New Hampshire income tax, Annie Kuster has changed her position repeatedly during this campaign, leaving voters to wonder where she actually stands:

        October 7 – Southern NH Jewish Men’s Club Forum – Kuster grabs microphone from Bass and tries to interrupt his closing statement, which noted her support for an income tax.

        October 9 – Kuster campaign tells Concord Monitor that she opposes an income tax at this time because the New Hampshire economy is down.

        October 10 – WBIN Debate – Kuster defiantly claims, “I do not support an income tax for New Hampshire.  Period!”   But when asked twice if she will support ballot Question #1 to constitutionally prohibit an income tax, Kuster refused to answer.

        October 11 – Kuster says in a Concord Monitor article that she does not support the Question #1 ban on an income tax.

Noting this inconsistency, Bass remarked, “Either you are for an income tax, or you’re not.”  He added “I guess I would ask, is this a commitment to support the New Hampshire value against broad based taxes, or a 20-day flip-flop for electoral convenience?"

Bass made clear his opposition to a New Hampshire income tax, without qualifications, and his commitment to voting for Question 1, which would institute a constitutional ban against a state income tax.  Said Bass, "In the tradition of New Hampshire not having an income tax, I will vote for that amendment and my opponent... won't."

Bass said that if Kuster elected to Congress, one of the very first votes she will take is to raise income taxes on the so-called “rich,” which will raise taxes on thousands of small business owners all across New Hampshire who operate their companies as Limited Liability Companies, since the company earnings are taxed as the individual owners’ income.   A recent Ernst & Young study concluded that Kuster’s income tax hike on small business owners will cost New Hampshire 3,400 jobs and $900 million in economic output.

Peter Thompson, Governor Thompson's eldest son emphasized his support for Charlie Bass and said it was vital that anti-income tax advocates have an ally in Congress.  

In closing the press conference, Rob Thompson urged voters not to buy Annie Kuster's evasions and dodges on the issue of an income tax.  "Voters need to ask Annie Kuster directly: 'Do you support an income tax for New Hampshire?'.” 

Thompson offered voters a piece of advice: "Don't let Annie Kuster worm her way out of it."

Annie Kuster’s Record of Strong Support for an Income Tax:

         Kuster has been a longtime supporter of a statewide income tax. In 1999 Kuster joined the board of the “Courage and Leadership PAC” – a group dedicated to imposing an income tax on New Hampshire. The PAC, founded by pro-income tax activist Gary Hirshberg, raised money to support “candidates of either party who support an income tax.” (Boston Globe, 7/4/1999).

         “In the letter, Hirshberg said the goal of the PAC is to ‘examine and educate the public on ALL fair taxation’ options for education funding. Translation: They favor the income tax but they won’t rule out talking about other options. That is except for one big one dear to the heart of the Senate president, Junie Blasidell, and Governor Jeanne Shaheen - expanded gambling. The PAC says it will have no part of it.” (Boston Globe, 7/4/1999)

        “Other members of the PAC board include possible congressional candidate Glen Secor, former Concord mayor Martin Gross, Ann McLane Kuster, Harold Janeway of Concord, Meg Hirshberg and Mary Townsend Scheffey.”  (Boston Globe, 7/4/1999)

        During the 2010 Democrat primary for Congress in New Hampshire’s 2nd District, Kuster’s opponent called her a “vigorous supporter of an income tax in New Hampshire” for supporting legendary income tax advocate Mark Fernald in his gubernatorial primary campaign against Jeanne Shaheen in 2000. Kuster also supported Fernald for governor in 2002.

        On Sept. 9, 2010, the Concord Monitor reported, “[Katrina] Swett also called Kuster a ‘vigorous supporter of an income tax in New Hampshire.’ Kuster supported former state senator Mark Fernald in his 2002 gubernatorial bid, citing at the time his support for an income tax to stabilize education funding in the state.”