An Identity Crisis: NC House GOP & Speaker Thom

tillis listenRob “Mr. Politics” Christensen tells us that “tax reform” is dead and buried.  Never mind that a proposal to abolish the corporate income tax is very much alive and well in the state Senate.   Don’t be too hard on ol’ Rob.  He’s not all that observant.  Heck, he followed John Edwards around for months and months and months and never noticed that blonde with the video camera.  (Huh? Rielle?  Rielle who?) 

McClatchy-Raleigh ran over to Speaker Senator Speaker (Spenator?) Thom Tillis seeking validation for their narrative that the GOP has #FAILED at tax reform.  Ol’ Thom obliged them, of course:

House Speaker Thom Tillis made clear Tuesday that the divide between the House and Senate tax plans remains a wide gulf.

In an interview, Tillis said the two chambers need to breach a “philosophical” divide — one that may take days, if not longer, to reconcile. His tone seemed to differ from Senate leader Phil Berger earlier in the day. “We are trying to change the mix in a way we believe will actually stimulate economic activity,” Tillis said. “I think the Senate is trying to do the same thing, but they have also focused on spending reductions –which we all want, but we need to do it at a pace that we can actually absorb.”

Tillis said House Republicans are concerned about cutting too deep into revenue needed for state spending priorities and hurt local governments, forcing them to increase property taxes.

So, our Supreme Leader is legitimizing the Democrat / Keynesian argument that the government knows best how to spend OUR MONEY.    The GOP state and national platforms say the GOP is all about the free market.  That means the party allegedly believes that people — their choices and their labor — are what stimulate economic growth.  NOT government.  If Republicans can’t agree on THAT — what’s left? 

It appears the party platform doesn’t mean much to some of those folks in the NC House.  At the recent GOP state convention, a plank was inserted into the party platform opposing HOT lanes and toll roads.  The very next week, the House approved a budget funding the implementation of HOT lanes and toll roads. 

Senator Speaker (Senaker?) Tillis continued:

As for the criticism that the Senate plan doesn’t represent tax “reform,” but merely a tax cut, Tillis said its “a valid question.”

Whose criticism?  The stuff coming from Democrats and their lapdogs at McClatchy and WRAL?   Reform means change.  I would say that abolishing the state’s corporate income tax is one hell of a change.  Lefties in government and the media don’t like the idea of  shrinking government and  letting people keep more of their hard-earned money.  Republicans are supposedly in favor of that. 

Tillis’s dig at the Senate is clearly a slap at president pro tem Phil Berger, who is still reportedly eyeing a campaign for US Senate.  Ol’ Thom has already announced for the race.  Recent polling  already shows him faring worse against Kay Hagan than Berger or physician Greg Brannon .   But TT is working on that.  He’s got trolls posting anonymous comments trashing Brannon on this site and others.  His buddy Carter Wrenn — still seeking relevance after,um, departing the Helms fold in the early 90s —  is taking shots at Brannon.

So, is this a sign of things to come?  Is legislative business taking a back seat to scoring points against potential US Senate primary opponents?  

If the game plan is for Tillis to spend the rest of this legislative term running to McClatchy to take shots at Phil Berger and the Senate,  that doesn’t bode well for the people of North Carolina who put the GOP in power in Raleigh hoping for relief  from oppressive taxation and burdensome government red tape.