In the fifth and final gubernatorial debate yesterday between Republican Doug Ducey and Democrat Fred DuVal, Ducey apparently walked back on his commitment to eliminating the state's income tax.
After DuVal attacked Ducey's plan to get rid of the income tax, Ducey replied that, "No one's talked about eliminating the income tax" -- as if it's something he has not actually proposed.
On his campaign website, there's a "pledge to the people of Arizona," and promise number one states that Ducey will, "Submit legislation to reduce taxes every year, with the goal of eliminating personal and corporate income taxes in Arizona . . . "
New Times e-mailed Ducey's campaign spokeswoman asking the question in this headline, and did not receive a response.
At least two other locations on his website refer to the elimination of the state income tax, and Ducey has mentioned it in countless public appearances.
Ducey's support -- or non-support -- for eliminating the income tax has become a point of attack for DuVal, who constantly is pointing out that you can't fix a major budget deficit by cutting out one of the state's largest sources of revenue (it's around 40 percent of the state's revenue, according to DuVal).
Ducey has started to backtrack on the subject a bit before, in a previous debate.
"Well, the income tax to zero is a direction," Ducey replied. He explained that the elimination of the state income tax is something of a distant goal.
But now, Ducey says no one's proposing an elimination of the income tax. Hm. And we're not the only ones who noticed this:(Arizona Capitol Times reporter)
(Executive Director of Progress Now Arizona)
Ducey says "no one's talked about eliminating the income tax." Excuse me while I check my notes.— Jeremy Duda (@jeremyduda) October 14, 2014
No one has talked about eliminating the income tax (except for Doug Ducey in every speech he gave before Aug. 26). #AZgov— Robbie Sherwood (@RobbieSherwood) October 14, 2014
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