Letters to the Editor

Wednesday's letters to the editor

'Fair Tax' is wrong for South Carolina

Reps. Rex Rice, R-Pickens, and Joey Millwood, R-Spartanburg, propose raising the already-high state sales tax and eliminating the state income tax, via H.3992, the S.C. Fair Tax Act, which also eliminates the approximately 300 sales tax exemptions.

This is a tax increase, pure and simple.

Consider, first, retirees, who no longer earn wages and salaries. A new sales tax would be a tax increase for them.

Even if property taxes were included under this plan (they're not), people over 65, who get property tax breaks due to age, would lose in a swap for a higher sales tax. They have paid taxes and have earned a break that will be forfeited when they suddenly have to pay higher sales taxes.

Sales taxes are regressive, so the poor and working class who spend more of what they earn for consumption will be paying proportionately more in sales taxes with no tax breaks. This bill shows no tax breaks even for those below poverty level.

South Carolina collects 6 percent sales tax and is in the top 5 percent of amounts of "general sales taxes" collected by any state in the United States now.

What are our state representatives spending our money on that they need to raise taxes on retirees, the working class and poor?

This appears to be a move primarily to exempt corporate income taxes and transfer the tax burden from business to us, the taxpayers. They call it the Fair Tax Plan to make it go down easier on the unsuspecting and uninformed taxpayers in the state.

MARIE VEVIK

Cayce

Graham criticizes national cynics

Kudos to our Sen. Lindsay Graham. His recent comments regarding inappropriate cynicism, conspiracy theories and disrespect of President Obama make me proud to be his constituent. The current political rhetoric is doing nothing to solve America's problems. I'm thankful for his leadership on this issue, for his reasonable tenor and for restoring my pride in being a South Carolinian.

LYN RICHARDS

Irmo

U.S. going left while Europe turns right

The article "Europe's right turn" Sunday discussed how Great Britain, France and Germany are moving to the right. In the United States, the Democrats and President Obama are trying to move this country to the far left. Why are they determined to have us make the same mistakes as the Europeans? I believe it is about power and the control of everyday citizens' lives. Health care proposed by the Democrats is more about controlling our lives than it is about health care.

LOU FROST

Columbia

Legislators are too focused on Sanford

It is regrettable that our state has to suffer for the misconduct of Gov. Mark Sanford. Many want him ousted because of his affair. If that is the standard, we wouldn't have had great leaders such as Washington, FDR, Eisenhower, Kennedy and many others.

Revenge is sweet, but to forgive is divine. I hope the legislators have the heart and wisdom to bury the hatchet and direct their energy and efforts to more urgent matters of state.

RAYMOND TOM

Columbia

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