Wow, I’m amazed. Unemployment in New Mexico continues to rise and and the nation’s unemployment numbers for February are the worse we’ve seen in 25 years:
The U.S. economy continued to hemorrhage jobs in February, bringing total job losses over the last six months to more than 3.3 million, and taking the unemployment rate to its highest level in 25 years.
The government reported Friday that employers slashed 651,000 jobs in February, down from a revised loss of 655,000 jobs in January. December’s loss was also revised higher to a loss of 681,000 jobs, a 59-year high for losses in one month.
Yet, the Albuquerque Journal has an article on a poll with the headline, Poll Shows Support for School Tax. For the life of me, I can’t imagine who in their right mind would want two tax increase under these circumstances:
Proponents of a proposed new public school funding formula hope that results from a new poll will breathe life back into legislation stalled in a House committee.
The poll, conducted this week, found that 59 percent of registered voters surveyed statewide support a gross-receipts tax increase to pay for the new formula. The formula would add about $360 million to school budgets.
Amazing, a majority of registered voters surveyed support two tax increases. Wait a minute. Let me look at that again. Hmm, something’s not right. Oh, I see.
Voters weren’t asked about a proposed increase in personal income taxes, which is another component of the house bill.
Nice. A poll that only asks about one part of the proposed tax increases. Isn’t that convenient. Funny how they didn’t think to poll whether folks would support increasing personal income taxes on everyone in the state of New Mexico earning under $8 an hour.
What’s even more interesting is the actual breakdown of those strongly supporting this half truth:
Of those polled, 23 percent strongly oppose the measure while 13 percent somewhat oppose it. Strongly supporting it were 36 percent, and somewhat supporting it were 23 percent.
Now that’s interesting… only 36% strongly support it. I wonder how many of those somewhat supporting would drop if you asked them how they felt about the tax increase if they knew it was only part of the equation? I wonder how many of those somewhat supporting the gross receipts tax increase would still support it if you helped them do the math, and pointed out that the tax increase proposed would increase the percentage they pay in taxes by more than 10%.
If I were legislator considering this bill, I wouldn’t let this polling change my mind. When it come time for re-election, you can be sure that the facts around this tax release will be presented in a lot more factual light. The 36% that strongly support it may still vote for you, but last I checked, that wasn’t even close to a majority.