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Personal spending piece of Oklahoma tax-cut hype is problematic

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Published: February 16, 2012
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We would never argue that the spending surge was related to the primacy of an income tax cut in the 2012 legislative session's agenda. For months, legislative leaders, think tanks and the governor have debated the merits and demerits of reducing or eliminating the personal income tax cuts. But that's no reason to conclude Oklahomans reacted to this by spending more.

They spent more because they could and, yes, they would spend even more if less money were withheld from their paychecks for the personal income tax. But they wouldn't spend 100 percent of the savings.

Another talking point of the tax debate is that an income tax cut or elimination could be partly offset by ending loopholes and exemptions. We doubt the people will see the taxation of previously untaxed items — even if it means lower income taxes — as anything other than an increase in sales taxes.

Which, by the way, would continue to be assessed on groceries in this state.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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