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SC House Member On Gas Tax: “I’ll Never Make That Mistake Again”

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“REPUBLICAN” HOUSE MEMBERS DON’T WANT TO DEAL WITH TAX HIKE DURING ELECTION YEAR

Members of the S.C. House of Representatives don’t like to talk about it during the current election year, but last year they passed a totally unnecessary $427 million gas tax hike.

In fact they did so overwhelmingly … only to see S.C. Senator Tom Davis thwart the entire effort by filibustering a similar tax hike in the S.C. Senate.

(Davis, incidentally, is mounting another filibuster this year … and God bless him for that).

Of course Davis is blocking a much larger tax hike – one that’s being pushed by fiscally liberal members of the Senate (who are even more greedy than their fiscally liberal counterparts in the House).

Assuming twenty-four members of the State Senate could be convinced to end Davis’ filibuster (a.k.a. “sit him down”), an $800 million gas tax hike is all but assured to pass the Senate.

If that happened, what’s known as a “conference committee” would be convened to iron out the differences between the House and Senate proposals.  This committee of lawmakers would then submit a compromise plan to be voted on by both chambers.

Would such a “compromise” clear the House?

Good question …

We’ve spoken to several House members who say they have no intention of supporting the gas tax this year – assuming some version of it makes it out of the Senate alive.

One of these lawmakers – S.C. Rep. Chris Corley – went on the record saying so this week.

“My one big mistake in the House as a freshman was voting for the gas tax,” Corley wrote on social media.  “Not because I believed in it, but because I felt like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day!”

Corley said he and his colleagues held “the exact same Caucus meeting once a week for eleven weeks and nothing got accomplished.”

“I figured since it was destined for conference committee we should just pass it out,” he said.  “I’ll never make that mistake again!!”

We’ve spoken to multiple GOP lawmakers who feel the same way.  We’ve spoken to others who said they supported a small gas tax hike but no longer believe it is necessary due to the state’s recent sustained revenue increases.  In fact several House members told us they were privately cheering on Davis’ filibuster – hoping it would kill the gas tax hike so they wouldn’t have to take it up again.

Ha!

We’re cheering Davis, too … albeit for more utilitarian reasons.

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