John McCain and Jon Kyl Give No Love to Governor Jan Brewer's Sales Tax Plan

Governor Jan Brewer's plan to temporarily raise the sales tax by 2 percent may be headed to the polls, but both of Arizona's U.S. senators have already made their decision: They hate it.

Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl issued a joint statement this morning saying they don't support the governor's plan for a sales tax increase because of the dire state of Arizona's economy.

"We support the right of Arizonans to decide the issue of a short-term sales tax increase on the local level. However, as Arizonans and Americans across our nation continue to face perilous economic times, we fundamentally oppose increasing taxes on small businesses and working families," McCain and Kyl say in the statement.

Brewer responded by issuing a statement of her own.

"Never before in my 28 years as an elected official have I supported a tax increase. And
although it is not a budget deficit I created, I am firm in my determination and responsibility to resolve it," Brewer says.

About two weeks ago, Brewer endorsed McCain in his bid to fend off former Congressman J.D. Hayworth in the GOP Senate primary.

McCain is trying to appeal to a conservative base, which has often questioned his conservatism. So an endorsement from an unpopular, centrist governor, who is supporting a tax increase is about as attractive to McCain as Karl Rove in a thong.

The McCain campaign didn't hype the endorsement the way it has hyped many of its other big-name endorsements, which makes us wonder if "The Maverick" is trying to distance himself from the unpopular Brewer.

We shot McCain campaign spokesman Brian Rogers an e-mail this morning asking if no love for the Brewer sales tax plan is an indicator that McCain would not be supporting Brewer as she enters her own GOP primary for governor. He hasn't gotten back to us.

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James King
Contact: James King