I swear, when it comes to tax hikes, this Jim Gibbons fella is all over the map.
The Reno Gazette-Journal noted on Friday that Gibbons “has vowed not to raise taxes,” but has also said “he won’t stand in the way of voter-approved tax increases.” Indeed, Gibbons included a “voter approved” Washoe County room tax hike in his budget in January.
And yet the governor announced yesterday that he would veto a “voter approved” Washoe County gas tax hike which was also on the ballot last November.
In trying to somehow rationalize the obvious contradiction of the conflicting Gibbons positions, spokesman Dan Burns – I’m betting with a straight face – “said Gibbons doesn’t consider the gas tax increase to be ‘voter approved.’”
Overlooking the fact that the specific language of neither the room tax hike nor the gas tax hike were on the ballot, advisory questions on both were. And both were approved by the voters. So how in the world can Gov. Two-Face say he’ll veto one but not the other under the absurd claim that one was approved by the people but not the other?
A similar contradiction popped up recently over raising fees (taxes by another name) – something else the governor pledged to oppose. And yet Gibbons supports a fee increase on the cost of a marriage license, but not on the cost of holding a wedding in a state park.
The ironic part is that the marriage fee increase is, indeed, a violation of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge the governor signed, while supporting an increase on the cost of renting a spot in a park for a wedding – which would be a true “user” fee – wouldn’t be.
This is what happens when fork-tongued politicians try to weasel out of campaign promises by inventing non-existent loopholes and escape clauses. They get themselves all twisted in knots and become inconsistent boobs. As the saying goes, “Ah, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.”
Even Spiderman couldn’t spin a web of deceit as big as the one Jim Gibbons has spun over his broken promise “to oppose and veto any and all efforts to increase taxes.” In that regard, the governor truly possesses super powers.