Arnold Schwarzenegger on Tax Reform

Republican CA Governor

Our economy is 21st century & our tax system is 20th century

The basic problem is that our tax system does not reflect our economy. In 2009, California's economic growth declined only by 2.8% but our tax revenues were down more than eight times that much.

Our economy is diverse, whereas our tax system is not; 144,000 taxpayers pay almost 50% of all personal income taxes. Now, think about that--38 million Californians have to rely on 144,000 people for their schools, their public safety and so many other services. That makes absolutely no sense.

Now, here is what we need to accept. Our economy is 21st century and our tax system is 20th century. It is stuck in the wrong century.

The Tax Reform Commission proposed major, radical reforms. Now, some people right away said they are too bold and thu they would be too hard to enact. Now, what do they mean too bold? Bold is what we do in California. And what do they mean too hard? If I had hesitated in my career every time I made a move because it was too hard, I would still be yodeling in Austria.

Source: California 2010 State of the State Address , Jan 6, 2010

Californians are overtaxed; find a better way

I am firmly opposed to raising taxes. Californians are already overtaxed. California has one of the highest tax burdens in the nation, and just about everything a Californian does today is subject to one tax or another.

Itís unfair to accept the notion that hitting taxpayers up for more money is the answer to our stateís budget and economic problems. Politicians in Sacramento should find a better way to turn things around-not simply shift the burden of their mistakes onto the backs of taxpayers.

Source: 2003 Gubernatorial campaign website, JoinArnold.com , Aug 29, 2003

Fight any attempt to roll back Proposition 13

Proposition 13 has allowed millions of Californians to realize the dream of homeownership for over 25 years, and I will fight any attempt to roll back its protection. Thanks to this measure, California homeowners are not burdened with the prospect of losing their homes someday because of a spiraling tax burden. Proposition 13 also protects Californians on fixed incomes, notably retired residents, from being priced out of their homes.
Source: 2003 Gubernatorial campaign website, JoinArnold.com , Aug 29, 2003

Pledges against raising taxes, except in emergencies

Schwarzenegger said heís ďfiscally conservative.Ē

ďI donít believe in spending. The first thing I would do when I go into Sacramento is put a spending cap on those politicians, because they just canít help themselves, theyíre addicts, they should go to an addiction place because itís ridiculous to spend money they donít have,Ē he said.

The candidate said he would be willing to take a pledge stating that barring any state emergencies, he would not raise taxes on California residents.

Source: CNN.com , Aug 28, 2003

Rescind the car tax; believes in lower taxes

Arnold has announced that, as Governor, he will rescind Gray Davisís tripling of the car tax. Arnold says: ďI still believe in lower taxes -- and the power of the free market. I still believe in controlling government spending. If itís a bad program, letís get rid of it.Ē
Source: Grassroots website, www.ArnoldGovernor.net, FAQ , Aug 17, 2003

$12B in federal economic stimulus as state block grants.

Schwarzenegger signed $12B in federal economic stimulus as state block grants

The nation's governors urge you to include state countercyclical funding as part of your legislation to stimulate the economy. This would include $6 billion in Medicaid assistance by freezing scheduled federal FMAP reductions and increasing all states' F Congress approved $20 billion in assistance to states, including $10 billion in Medicaid and $10 billion in block grants. The governors' current stimulus proposal is essentially the same, with the exception that it is a total of $12 billion as opposed to $20 billion. This proposal can be enacted quickly, as there is precedent and it is timely, temporary and targeted.

Additionally, governors appreciate federal efforts to use tax policy to get additional money into the hands of consumers and businesses to stimulate the economy. When considering tax changes to spur economic growth, governors urge Congress and the Administration to follow the maxim of "Do no harm" by avoiding changes at the federal level that would diminish state tax revenues or force state actions that would undermine the effectiveness of federal efforts.

We look forward to working with you to enact the appropriate stimulus program.

Source: Letter from 37 governors to House & Senate Leadership NGA-0801TX on Jan 28, 2008

Other governors on Tax Reform: Arnold Schwarzenegger on other issues:
CA Gubernatorial:
Jerry Brown
CA Senatorial:
Barbara Boxer
Dianne Feinstein

Newly seated 2010:
NJ Chris Christie
VA Bob McDonnell

Term-limited as of Jan. 2011:
AL Bob Riley
CA Arnold Schwarzenegger
GA Sonny Perdue
HI Linda Lingle
ME John Baldacci
MI Jennifer Granholm
NM Bill Richardson
OK Brad Henry
OR Ted Kulongoski
PA Ed Rendell
RI Donald Carcieri
SC Mark Sanford
SD Mike Rounds
TN Phil Bredesen
WY Dave Freudenthal
Newly Elected Nov. 2010:
AL: Robert Bentley (R)
CA: Jerry Brown (D)
CO: John Hickenlooper (D)
CT: Dan Malloy (D)
FL: Rick Scott (R)
GA: Nathan Deal (R)
HI: Neil Abercrombie (D)
IA: Terry Branstad (R)
KS: Sam Brownback (R)
ME: Paul LePage (R)
MI: Rick Snyder (R)
MN: Mark Dayton (D)
ND: Jack Dalrymple (R)
NM: Susana Martinez (R)
NV: Brian Sandoval (R)
NY: Andrew Cuomo (D)
OH: John Kasich (R)
OK: Mary Fallin (R)
PA: Tom Corbett (R)
RI: Lincoln Chafee (I)
SC: Nikki Haley (R)
SD: Dennis Daugaard (R)
TN: Bill Haslam (R)
VT: Peter Shumlin (D)
WI: Scott Walker (R)
WY: Matt Mead (R)
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Page last updated: Nov 21, 2011