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Keystone Corp reaped what it sowed

Nevada political organization Keystone Corp’s stated mission is:

“To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.”

Among Keystone’s stated goals is:

“To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.”

Keystone was especially opposed this legislative session to the creation of any kind of new gross receipts/corporate income tax that would tax a business’s gross revenue regardless of whether or not the business was profitable.

Indeed, in an “URGENT” action alert on April 6, 2015, Keystone implored its dues-paying members to rise up in opposition to Gov. Brian Sandoval’s gross receipts tax proposal…

“URGENT: SB 252 (Business License Fee/Gross Receipts Tax) passed out of the Senate Revenue and Economic Development Committee, and is moving to the Senate Floor. Contact the Senators you have supported in the past and thank them for their continued help in opposing this tax.”

In case you missed it, the Nevada Legislature passed a new gross receipts tax this week, along with the host of additional tax hikes totaling upwards of $1.5 billion – the largest tax hike in Nevada history.

Hmmm.

Out of curiosity, a friend of mine did a little checking on Keystone’s contributions to legislative candidates last year.  Here’s what he found…

Keystone donated to Republican Senate Majority Leader Tax Hike Mike Roberson – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Republican State Sen. Becky Harris – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Republican State Sen. Patricia Farley – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Republican State Assemblyman Erv Nelson – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Republican Assemblywoman Melissa Woodbury – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Republican Assemblyman P.K. O’Neill – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Republican Assemblyman Stephen Silberkraus – who voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Had Nelson, Woodbury, O’Neill and Silberkraus kept their campaign promises and voted against the gross receipts tax in the Assembly, the gross receipts tax would have been killed in the Assembly.

And while all four claimed in their campaigns that they were opposed to tax hikes, none of them put our money where their mouths were by signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.

On the other hand, every Tax Pledge signer in the Assembly other than Speaker John Hambrick voted against the new gross receipts tax.

Hello?

But back to the review…

Keystone donated to Laura Bledsoe – who lost in a GOP primary against a candidate who voted AGAINST the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone donated to Robin Reedy – who lost in a GOP primary against a candidate who voted AGAINST the new gross receipts tax.

In addition to its money, Keystone also lent its moral support to a number of other candidates last year…

Keystone endorsed Sen. Joe Hardy and Sen. Ben Kieckhefer – both of whom voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

And Kieckhefer had a GOP primary opponent who would have voted against the new gross receipts tax.

Keystone also endorsed Assemblymen Lynn Stewart, Pat Hickey, Paul Anderson, Derek Armstrong, Randy Kirner and James Oscarson – all of whom voted FOR the new gross receipts tax.

Stewart, Hickey and Kirner all had credible, viable GOP primary opponents who would have voted against the new gross receipts tax.

But Keystone didn’t give those candidates the time of day, let alone its endorsement or a donation.

So somehow, I’m finding it a little difficult to feel sorry for Keystone Corp’s members this morning.

FAMOUS LAST WORDS

“If a man’s word isn’t any good, he’s no good himself.” – Wilson Rawls

“I will NEVER again support a politician who will not sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.” – John Vettel, Carson City, NV