(Chuck Muth) – Folks, I will beat this dead horse ‘til the cows come home: Do NOT
take as gospel anything any politician says on the campaign trail. A
couple cases in point…
In May 2010, while running for his first term in the state senate,
Ben Kieckhefer, with a straight face, said this to reporter Sean
Whaley: “I consider myself a pretty darn conservative guy. Any
notion of me as some pro-tax Republican is totally flawed. I’m
Man, his nose grew so fast after that whopper that it poked Whaley
right in the eye!
“Blue Dog” Ben went on to win his election…then voted for the
$600 million “sunset” tax hike in 2011…then voted for the $600
million “sunset” tax hike again in 2013…then voted for the
another $600 million tax hike on the mining industry last year, as
And that doesn’t even count all the smaller tax and fee hikes
he’s voted for.
Nah, he’s not a “pro-tax Republican,” is he? That notion is,
like, totally flawed, dude.
But Kieckhefer is far from alone in speaking with forked tongue.
Here’s what Greg Brower said to reporter Ray Hagar about his
position on tax hikes and decision not to sign the Taxpayer
Protection Pledge in January 2011, right before his first session as
an appointed state senator…
“We need to balance the budget without raising taxes. But I have
not made a habit of signing pledges and I don’t foresee doing so in
Like Kieckhefer, Brower then went on to vote for extending the $600
million worth of “sunsets” last session…as well as the $600
million mining tax hike…as well as a bunch of other lesser tax and
fee hikes. So, so much for balancing the budget without raising
Now remember, all of this came about after Brian Sandoval promised
not to raise taxes or extend the “sunsets” when he was running
for governor…but similarly refused to sign the Tax Pledge. And
here’s what I told Hagar about that in the Brower story…
“I have to give Greg Brower the same benefit of the doubt that we
all have to give Brian Sandoval. If he says he is not going to vote
to raise taxes or fees, great. I hope he sticks with it. I would
prefer, of course, that they sign the Pledge because I’ve had so
many bad experiences with candidates who say one thing then find
loopholes. But I’ll take Greg at his word until it is proven
Of course, Brower, like Sandoval, proved otherwise. Which is why I
no longer take ANY politician’s word for it when it comes to tax
hikes. Sandoval was a federal judge. Brower was a U.S. attorney.
Neither kept their word.
Our Founding Fathers would be so proud.