Columnist Danny Westneat asks, “Why does a blue state retain such a red-state tax system?” The fact is, Washington needs more of a red-state tax system. With the exception of Wyoming, South Dakota, Texas and Florida, all the red states have some sort of state income tax, although some employ a flat rate and others have progressive state income taxes. While lacking a state income tax, Tennessee still taxes interest and dividends, certainly a tax on those with a high income.
Many Washingtonians, and certainly Seattleites, seem to want government to intervene in a positive way to better our society across the board, but they still don’t go strongly to bat for a fairer tax system. While we might need some sales-tax and property-tax relief if the state constitution were amended to allow for a state income tax, certainly the tax burden could be more fairly distributed to rest less heavily on the backs of the middle class and the poor. In this area, at least, we could learn a few things from our red states.
Toni Cross, Seattle