Tag Archives: tax breaks for the rich

Choices: Care for Grandma or Tax Breaks for Millionaires?

Grandma got haslamedIf given the choice between spending tax dollars on care for Tennessee seniors who need nursing home services or a new $100 million annual tax break for the wealthiest families in our state, which would you choose?

Republican Gov. Bill Haslam told grandma “you’re on your own” and chose to pad the pockets of his fellow millionaires and billionaires.

In a bit of solid reporting from The Tennessean, reporter Tom Wilemon found that 3,000 elderly Tennesseans who need nursing home care cannot get it because of Haslam budget cuts:

Under a program known as TennCare Choices, [some Tennessee seniors] could have selected either a nursing home or intensive at-home support from nurses and other health care providers. But the state, in an effort to curtail costs while meeting the health needs of aging baby boomers, set new rules that create a higher hurdle for families to qualify. Nearly 3,000 people who probably would have been judged to need nursing home care in early 2012 are instead getting only limited home visits.

The story explained in detail the horrific consequences some families and elderly couples are grappling with as a result of the Haslam administration’s decision to cut the nursing home program.

Cuts to programs for the poor and elderly are inevitable when the Republican governor and legislature place tax cuts for the rich and well connected above all else.

In the 2012 vice presidential debate, Joe Biden famously said, “show me your budget and I’ll tell you what your priorities are.”

Instead of strengthening healthcare security for elderly Tennesseans and working families, Haslam and the Republican majority prioritized tax breaks for millionaires and budget-busting handouts for business pals.

Haslam's tax cuts for the rich

Our economy grows strongest, not from the top-down, but from the middle-out and bottom-up.

Multimillion dollar tax breaks for Haslam and his wealthy friends undermine our economic future. As do skyrocketing out-of-pocket healthcare costs for some of our grandparents.

Ironically, the name of the nursing home program Haslam cut is “Choices.”

Tennessee seniors should remember this and choose anything but Haslam and his severe Republican majority come November.

Morning Coffee – Making Up for Lost Time Edition

I don't care what they say, time is NOT on your side, in fact, it hates you and wants you to be miserable

As Trace noted yesterday afternoon, Monday was a day filled with frustration and demon possessed technology. Hopefully, today will be less trying.

Things are heating up, and I’m not just talking about the weather. The looming statewide primary election in August has Republican Gubernatorial candidates running around looking for new ways to shank each other, even if it means ginning up some controversy as one commenter on this thread is suggesting.

So while Haslam, Ramsey and Wamp are sharpening their shivs and training them on each other, presumptive Democratic nominee, Mike McWherter is traveling the state talking to regular folks about their lives, their work, and the challenges of being an ordinary Tennessean…something the three Republicans in the race have no particular experience with at all.

Case in point, taxes. All three of the Republicans in the race are down with cutting taxes, but not the one we come in contact with daily. Nope these guys are talking about the Hall tax, inheritance taxes and franchise business taxes. Ever heard of them? Well, maybe the inheritance tax, but otherwise probably not if you’re not rich or a business owner.

Yeah, those three taxes combined add up to about 8.5% of total state revenue and touch fewer Tennesseans than any other revenue source. When asked why not cut the state sales tax, something that would actually help regular folks, you know, buy more or better food…well these guys just aren’t that into it. Way to be about the people guys. (BTW, McWherter is open to the idea of reducing the sales tax on groceries)

If you’re looking for some line of distinction between the Republican candidates and Mike McWherter, there it is. Republicans only want to help the rich, and McWherter wants to help ALL OF US. Way to go Mike!

Alright, this calls for some Coffee!

Speaking of Republicans, they’re counting their chickens and measuring for drapes, McWherter says not so fast fellas.

Over here on the west side the CA is looking at the Shelby County Sheriff’s race, and the political climate in general. In a follow up to a blog post from yesterday, Zack McMillin is seeing some strange bedfellows.

Memphis City Councilwoman Wanda Halbert is cautious about consolidation concessions. We’ll have more on this later once I have some real time to look at the proposals.

Speaking of the Memphis City Council, they want another peek at the settlement with Performa in the Beale St. controversy.

And finally, Memphis Mayor A C Wharton is holding a virtual town hall tonight at 6pm.

Alright folks, there’s your super double sized morning coffee, to hopefully make up for yesterday’s technology troubles. Have a great day and try to avoid those Republican shivs, I hear they’re pointy.