Hart's Education Initiative is working to get the tax passed on the November ballot. The measure would levy a 2 percent tax on businesses with
But myriad pro-business groups and Republicans have sparred with Hart. Likely supporters -- some unions and Democrats -- have even tiptoed away from the measure.
Opponents say they support public education but think the tax increase would hurt the economy. Some research suggests that the tax would cost the state 9,000 private-sector jobs and
But that hasn't stopped Hart. After several attempts to boost education funding at
Why are Democrats not championing the margins tax? Speaker
I don't think we expected a great deal of support. In fact, our campaign's foundation is a grassroots one where we talk to friends, colleagues and co-workers about these issues. The goal was never to get more endorsements than our opposition. It was more about being able to communicate effectively. ... There are some politicians who are afraid that if they speak out on this issue they will alienate the business community, which provides them a great deal of campaign contributions.
You're best to get the answer from them. In my own opinion, there is a lot of backroom politics associated with those kinds of endorsements.
When you go into local schools, what is one thing you consistently see that could be fixed with revenue from the tax?
Overcrowded classrooms. There's no question that's the number one issue in the schools today.
Who's paying for the Stop the Margin Tax campaign's research and ads?
I don't know. We'll see when the report is due. From what I've seen listed on their website, I could guess the
Aside from the teachers union, who is bankrolling the Education Initiative's campaign?
It's by and large the teachers union. We've got some individual contributions from people, but they have been dwarfed by the teachers union. ... There's no way that we're going to have as much money as our opponents have. They have a virtually unlimited budget as far as I can see.
At face value, the tax is a shot in the arm for
I believe so. You have to boil it down to its essence: Do you believe businesses should invest more money in the education system?
Any sort of tax package requires two-thirds approval. ... If you can point to one thing that is a drawback, that is the biggest problem in getting more revenue to schools from
Do you see any viable alternatives to a tax? It's been suggested that
I don't know how they could get those things through
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