published Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

Wamp says Haslam may push state tax

NASHVILLE — Republican Zach Wamp on Tuesday questioned GOP gubernatorial rival Bill Haslam’s commitment to opposing a state income tax.

U.S. Rep. Wamp, R-Tenn., noted that, as Knoxville’s mayor, Haslam hiked property taxes almost 15 percent, blaming it on his predecessor.

“I’m the only Republican candidate running who has not raised taxes and we have got to hold the line,” Wamp said during a “teleforum” call with Tennessee members of the National Federation of Independent Business. “When (Haslam) became mayor, he said his predecessor left him in an awkward position and he just had to raise taxes.”

Wamp said Tennessee’s next governor will be in a similar “awkward” position when he takes office in January because federal stimulus money “evaporates.”

“Is this the same kind of logic going to be used next year that, ‘Oh, we’re just going to have to raise taxes’?” he asked.

Wamp also said that, when Gov. Don Sundquist pushed a state income tax in the late 1990s, Haslam family members backed a pro-tax reform group called Citizens for Fair Taxes.

“I can see a scenario where they would say, ‘Well we just don’t have any choice. We’re just going to have to go ahead and push through a state income tax,” Wamp said.

Haslam had left the teleforum call prior to Wamp’s charge. Campaign spokesman David Smith later scoffed at the congressman’s assertion.

“Bill Haslam has been clear from the beginning that he’s 100 percent against an income tax,” Smith said. “The congressman’s campaign is fading ... he’s desperately throwing charges at the wall hoping something will stick.”

Also participating in the teleforum was Democrat gubernatorial candidate Mike McWherter. GOP candidate Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, R-Blountville, sought to participate but was unable to do so because of a technical glitch.

Wamp also argued that continued extensions of unemployment compensation have created “disincentives” for people to find work.

“We want people out there scraping and clawing and looking for work and not just sitting back waiting,” he said.

Tennessee AFL-CIO Labor Council President Jerry Lee later said “we’ve got people out there scraping and clawing and looking for jobs already and there are six applicants for every job.”

Also participating in the teleforum was Democrat gubernatorial candidate Mike McWherter. GOP candidate Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, R-Blountville, sought to participate but was unable to do so because of a technical glitch.

about Andy Sher...

Andy Sher is a Nashville-based staff writer covering Tennessee state government and politics for the Times Free Press. A Washington correspondent from 1999-2005 for the Times Free Press, Andy previously headed up state Capitol coverage for The Chattanooga Times, worked as a state Capitol reporter for The Nashville Banner and was a contributor to The Tennessee Journal, among other publications. Andy worked for 17 years at The Chattanooga Times covering police, health care, county government, ...

Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
creedmspigy said...

I used to respect Mr.Wamp but enough is enough. I personally am so sick of the negative campaign and attack politics. I am impressed with the Haslam campaign and his ability to not lower himself. It is refreshing. A gentleman is what he has been through it will and I believe that Tennessee and this country needs. Shame on you Mr. Wamp.

July 28, 2010 at 11:39 a.m.
Truetenn said...

Yeah shame on you Mr. Wamp. So easily you forget all the Campaign promises you broke {term Limits and Pac money are 2 of many} I think Mr. Haslam has been a good Mayor of Knoxville and will make a good Governor to follow a good one in Governor Bredeson. Why are you so desperate to pull all the mud slinging. Are you afraid if you get beat you will have to go to work?

July 28, 2010 at 12:24 p.m.
docspop said...

When you can't make yourself look good try to make the other person look worse. This is what Wamp is all about. Docspop

July 28, 2010 at 12:27 p.m.
Truetenn said...

I was thinking about voting for you Mr. Wamp but now you can forget it. I will vote for Mr. Haslam.

July 28, 2010 at 1:04 p.m.
MountainJoe said...

The only reason that Zach hasn't raised taxes is that he is part of the federal government. When they run out of money, they just borrow it from China or have the Federal Reserve print up some more. Wamp HAS voted for massive federal spending, for example the Wall Street Bailout. He just hasn't had to vote explicitly for increased taxes to finance it ... leaving that problem to his successors.

I'm not impressed by Haslam either. I'm supporting Ron Ramsey.

July 28, 2010 at 1:38 p.m.
frayne48 said...

Too bad politicians don't give the common voter enough credit to see through this kind of crap. Wamp is behind so he resorts to running his opponent down instead of focusing on the issues that face the state. Zach, you deserve to lose and kudos to Haslam for keeping his campaign above board.

July 28, 2010 at 3:24 p.m.
BOOBOO99 said...


July 28, 2010 at 4:26 p.m.
FM_33 said...

The whole internet system here in the United States is run from a CIA office in Signal Mountain TN.

They also contract with the US Military the basic 250.000 MHRZ wave freqency that they run it on is very powerful. Also a short wave * Alpha Ditrot Radio * does the rest as a filter and acts as a firewall to stop an incoming scamp virus that might infect the main fame.

If you don't believe this check this file in at the library of congress in Washington DC and the file is under the sub text ( Alpha Internet Computer System ) or AICS and the file number is.

Class C File Unclassified Route File # 25452-14547-03 Pages: 520 Index: 43 By: United States Army Intelligence Washington DC Dept: Computer internet division Intro By: Gen. Colin Powell Year: 1984

If you do get a chance to read it you will never allow a computer voting system like DIEBOT to take over the old fashion way of doing it by paper ballot.

  • Vote Paper Ballot Only IN Each And Every Election *
July 28, 2010 at 5:39 p.m.
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