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People of Alaska Have a Role to Defend their Economic Freedom

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Economic growth is one of the key issues that is on the mind of many Conservatives; Americans deserve a growing economy that offers the opportunity to work and succeed. It is important to not only focus on job creation but also on growing our economy through reforms such as reducing the tax burden. Alaska is one of nine states that does not have a personal income tax. Every state that thrives with oil, must also ride with low oil prices every now and then. However, raising the price on work only makes a state’s long run revenue volatility worse, not better. As oil money is melting, Alaska Governor Bill Walker is facing a profound fiscal crisis, and as a result, has proposed the imposition of a personal income tax for the first time in nearly thirty-five years.

When the state GOP imposes a personal income tax, the state share of the national economy declines. Governor Walker’s quick-fix solution has the potential to lead to long-term damage. As studied in An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of States, adopting an income tax leads to disaster. Eleven out of eleven states that introduced the income tax since 1960 have experienced an overall economic decline.

The people of Alaska have a role to defend their economic freedom. As the first and only state to ever abolish an existing income tax, Alaska has been an economic generator with the combination of its’ high-paying energy jobs and no income tax. Why would Alaskans want to get rid of their no income tax policy and join the likes of Illinois and Ohio- states that once adopting an income tax, have experienced slower economic growth than the national average?

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