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What They Are Saying... Freedom Foundation Fights Back Against Illegal Seattle Income Tax

What They Are Saying... Freedom Foundation Fights Back Against Illegal Seattle Income Tax

July 12, 2017

Yesterday, following the Seattle City Council's passage of an illegal income tax, the Freedom Foundation pushed back on this assault on taxpayers. For 25 years, the Freedom Foundation has been standing up for taxpayers, and they are again now fighting back against the radical Seattle City Council's new illegal and unconstitutional income tax.  

Here is what is being said about the Freedom Foundation fighting back...

Q13 NEWS"[The income tax] is far from a sure thing... The Freedom Foundation says it will try to form a coalition with other groups to file a lawsuit against the city"

Seattle Times"The Freedom Foundation... announced in a statement that the organization was prepared to challenge the tax in court" 
The Freedom Foundation, a conservative think tank based in Olympia, announced in a statement that the organization was prepared to challenge the tax in court — "hopefully with a coalition of other freedom-minded organizations."

"No matter who starts out paying it, everyone will eventually suffer," foundation CEO Tom McCabe said in the statement, warning that the tax would creep down the income ladder.

KIRO 7"Seattle passed its income tax Monday with the aim of taking it to court, challenging the state's Constitution, and opening the door for statewide income taxes. The Freedom Foundation is the first party to take on that challenge."

Seattle passed its income tax Monday with the aim of taking it to court, challenging the state's Constitution, and opening the door for statewide income taxes. The Freedom Foundation is the first party to take on that challenge.

"In the wake of the Seattle City Council's vote on Monday to approve an illegal, unconstitutional income tax, the Freedom Foundation is prepared to challenge the action in court – hopefully with a coalition of other freedom-minded organizations," the foundation said Monday in a press release.

The Freedom Foundation is a right-wing think tank based in Washington and Oregon. It argues that the income tax won't stop at Seattle's rich, rather, if it gets through it will eventually be imposed upon people at various income levels. The foundation further notes that Washington's constitution already outlaws income taxes.

The matter has been ruled upon by the Supreme Court twice in Washington's history. First in the 1930s when the court determined that income was property. The state Constitution further states that all property must be taxed uniformly at 1 percent. This prevents a progressive income tax in Washington — different income levels paying different rates. Proponents argue that the state's poorest pay a larger percentage of their income, whereas higher-income residents pay a smaller portion.

As the Freedom Foundation stated, it hopes to form a coalition to battle Seattle's income tax through the court system. Therefore, it could just be the first of many organizations planning on challenging Seattle.

"Liberals have long wanted a statewide income tax to fund their big government programs and hire thousands more unionized public employees," said Freedom Foundation CEO Tom McCabe. "But voters have consistently rejected the idea."

"So they're trying to get around that problem," he said, "by imposing a tax that, at least at first, only the 'rich' will have to pay. But there are two problems with that idea. One, it's a lie. No matter who starts out paying it, everyone will eventually suffer. And two, it's manifestly illegal and unconstitutional in Washington to impose a tax that treats people differently based on income level."

Crosscut"In fact, less than two hours after the vote, the conservative Freedom Foundation issued a statement saying it will file a lawsuit."

Thanks in large part to a 1930s Washington State Supreme Court decision, there is no income tax in the state and the assumption is Seattle's will end up in court — and quickly. In fact, less than two hours after the vote, the conservative Freedom Foundation issued a statement saying it will file a lawsuit. "It's manifestly illegal and unconstitutional in Washington to impose a tax that treats people differently based on income level," said Freedom Foundation CEO Tom McCabe in the statement.

If the Freedom Foundation makes good on its word Monday, it will be up to the City Attorney's Office to explain why they think the ordinance should be allowed.

KUOW"The Freedom Foundation, an Olympia-based conservative think tank, is already gearing up for a legal challenge against the ordinance."

The Freedom Foundation, an Olympia-based conservative think tank, is already gearing up for a legal challenge against the ordinance. 

"We're putting together a coalition to litigate to strike down this tax. We know there are others who have concerns as well," said Jami Lund, senior policy analyst for the foundation.

Lund said he was disappointed in the council's decision to pass the measure Monday. Like other opponents of the tax, Lund said it's illegal under state law and goes against the state constitution.

He said it's likely other groups will also challenge the tax in court.

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