As a Republican, I find my association with them wearing thin, as I observed the debate over the transportation taxes. Our representatives seem to be operating under the dogmatic old theme “no new taxes.” In this case, however, we need new taxes. The highway system is integral to and the lifeblood of our state. Good roads and safe bridges allow commerce and tourism to thrive (tax money), and touches all aspects of our lives by providing safe bus routes to our children’s schools, our work and our vacation travels in this great state. To economize on this is a mistake and could raise the liabilities to our state.
A wise president once said, “read my lips, no new taxes,” but when he saw the results of what that pledge would do to America, he courageously backed off and raised taxes. This may have ultimately lost him his bid for a second term in the White House but left our country on a better financial foundation. I would challenge our representative to follow this lesson and raise the necessary taxes for a better transportation system where all users pay a fair share of maintenance, future planning and development costs.
Gerry Helling, Boise