[Illustration by DONKEY HOTEY]
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Gov. Tom Corbett may be seeking opinions from his shale commission whether the state Senate-proposed drilling impact fee is a tax, but the group whose no-tax pledge he signed has issued its decree: it breaks the pledge. “Make no mistake, this proposal is a tax increase based on any honest and objective analysis,” Norquist wrote in a letter to Sen. Mary Jo White, whose committee would need to approve the impact fee, and other lawmakers. “As such, a vote in favor of Senate Bill 1100 also represents a violation of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, a commitment which Gov. Corbett and 34 members of the legislature have made to their constituents to impose any and all efforts to raise taxes.”That’s bad news for Corbett, whose talks with lawmakers over the next month on the state spending plan will include negotiating with a top Senate Republican, Joe Scarnati, who wants an impact fee passed with the budget. The governor, who opposes a gas severance tax, so far has been punting on whether he’d consider an impact fee that sends most of the revenues to local governments and zero to the state operating budget. He wants his Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission to issue a recommendation on the issue in its July 22 report. His spokesman, Kevin Harley, says that means no impact fee with the state budget. “He’s been very clear – the budget is June 30, and the Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission won’t be ready until mid-July,” Harley said. MORE
PHAWKER: Funny how Governor Whorebett’s ‘Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission’ doesn’t issue their report on whether or not to tax gas drillers until a month after the budget deadline. Not so much funny haha, but more crying-on-the-inside-laughing-on the-outside funny.
GROVER NORQUIST: “My ideal citizen is the self-employed, homeschooling, IRA-owning guy with a concealed-carry permit. Because that person doesn’t need the goddamn government for anything,” he said describing members of the “Leave-Us-Alone Coalition”.
TUCKER CARLSON: “Norquist is a mean-spirited, humorless, dishonest little creep […] he’s an embarrassing anomaly, the leering, drunken uncle everyone else wishes would stay home. Norquist is repulsive, granted, but there aren’t nearly enough of him to start a purge trial.”