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House Dems Spur Debate On Tax Plan

In the Kansas House Friday, work on a technical bill that would make adjustments to last year's tax cut turned into a debate over Governor Sam Brownback's latest tax plan.

A Democratic House member tried to insert the governor's new tax proposal into the bill on the floor, saying it would give the chamber a chance to debate its merits. Both Republicans and Democrats voted down the amendment, but for different reasons.

Democrat Ed Trimmer said voting against the amendment sends a message. "I think we need to make sure that we send a message to the people that we don't want this kind of tax policy," Trimmer said.

The chair of the House Tax Committee, Republican Richard Carlson, said he supports the goals of the governor's latest plan. But he said legislators should vote down the amendment so the tax bill will go through the normal committee process. "I think we have an obligation to the people of the state of Kansas to thoroughly investigate the governor's program," Carlson said.

The amendment failed on a vote of 118-0. House Speaker Ray Merrick called the move by Democrats "gamesmanship."