It’s not every day that the Tampa Bay Times publishes the opinions of academics who don’t conform to the talking points of Democrats. But an article published this week in the Times (Four questions you need answered about Andrew Gillum’s corporate tax plan) essentially reinforces Republican claims that Andrew Gillum’s plan to hike taxes would destroy the state’s economy. Among the most damaging paragraphs in the story:
1. Would Gillum’s proposed corporate tax increase stop corporations from moving to Florida?
Academics say that it’s possible. A 2015 research paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research showed that corporations are more likely to pull resources — employees, stores, etc. — from states that raise their corporate tax rates.
The Times’ writers do their best to avoid calling Gillum’s plan a complete economic disaster, but in point after point, the story merely reinforces that conclusion. The Times even links to another story in the Sarasota Herald Tribune saying that even some Democrat elected officials admit it’s an economic catastrophe, urging Gillum to rethink the proposal. From that article:
That the majority of local Democrats running for the Legislature are reluctant to get on board with Gillum’s tax hike underscores how liberal some of his proposals are. Gillum — the African American mayor of Tallahassee — may be the most liberal candidate Democrats have ever nominated to run for governor in Florida. [emphasis added]
Another gem from the Times’ article:
Still, Miguel Santos, the chair of the economics department at the University of Miami’s Business School, said Gillum’s plan could make Florida marginally less competitive than neighboring states when it comes to attracting new corporations.
The Times also contrasts Gillum’s plan to hike taxes with the 2017 GOP tax cuts signed into law by President Trump:
If businesses have more money to work with, the [2017 GOP] bill’s supporters said, profits will inevitably trickle down to rank-and-file employees in the form of increased wages and jobs. Former U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, Gillum’s Republican opponent in the governor’s race, voted for the bill.
Some large corporations in Florida have passed along some of those tax savings to workers. In February, Publix announced it would give its hourly employees a raise to make the chain more competitive with other large retailers, who were doing the same.
Of course, the Times barely touched on one of the most obvious flaws with Gillum’s plan – the fact that even though it hikes “corporate” tax rates, those corporations will, in many cases, pass those additional costs on to Florida consumers, raising the cost of goods and services in the state.
When both fellow Democrats and the leading liberal media outlet in the state admit that Andrew Gillum’s tax hike is a threat to Florida’s economy, something is clearly wrong.