We’ve all heard the story of the Boston Tea Party and the rallying cry of “No taxation without representation!” Totes fair position. Your representatives should not take your money through taxation and fees without at least pretending to give you a say.
But a more accurate way to look at the way the system works is: No representation without taxation! As the old adage goes: Two things in life are certain; death and taxes.
Last Friday, Governor Sununu signed HB 1264, a voting residency requirement bill. Read his take, NH welcomes new voters, if they become NH residents.
Opponents say this bill, which establishes a residency requirement in order to vote, will constrain voting by NH-based students and other transients such as college professors, military personnel, and medical residents.
But here’s the rub: Why should anyone be able to vote in New Hampshire if they are not a resident, and if the residency requirement is based partly on having to register your car and pay your licensing fees, why should any voter be exempt?
Opponents call the residency requirements a poll tax. OK, let’s parse this out… Is it only a poll tax for people who haven’t already become a resident and paid their fees? Or is it a poll tax on all Granite Staters, including those who have already paid? And if so, can we do away with this "poll tax" on everyone? Surely all voters should be exempt, or all should have to pay? Surely all voters should be held to the same standard?
The NH Supreme Court, in a divided advisory opinion issued last Thursday, seems to concur with this sentiment when it stated:
“The remedy effectuated by HB 1264 accomplishes this objective by equalizing the legal standard for domicile for voting purposes with the legal standard for residence for other purposes."
Opponents also say this bill takes away students and other transient voters right to vote. This is untrue. If you are not a resident of New Hampshire, you can still vote physically or by absentee ballot in your home state.
Students typically vote Democrat. Democrats typically tax more. Instead of crying foul, opponents of the bill should concede what is strikingly clear: If you wanna vote (to increase my taxes), you gotta pay to play like the rest of us! You don’t get an easy pass to vote for policies that destroy the NH Advantage without having to contribute to the tax and fee increases you are voting for!
Perhaps when students discover the real costs of their voting records, they will reconsider whether they are actually acting in their own best interests. It is like that moment when you watch a young employee get their first paycheck. Invariably, as they scan their pay stub, their faces turn from, “I’m rich! I worked hard, and here is my reward!” to “WTF? Why is this so much less than I was expecting?”
It is so much less because you vote for people who espouse policies that sound good and make you feel good without thinking about what it will cost, or who will pay. All those deductions? All that money you now don’t have to spend? THAT’S what it costs (and I’m not even factoring in the deficit debt, which is insurmountably out-of-control). Welcome to adulthood! Now go take a free market economics course, so you can learn socialism isn’t free (or social), and literally makes everyone poorer… Yes, even YOU!
Readers know I prefer solutions that reduce taxes and fees for all. I’d like to see all Granite Staters keep more of their hard earned money to voluntarily spend on whatever they see fit. But, in the meanwhile, we vote, and we have rules about how we vote. If we’re going to have these rules, and if we are going tax ourselves to death, then let’s keep it real, and apply the rules equally to all of us, which is what HB 1264 does.
If you would like me to come speak at an event–I’d love to meet you!–please email me at Carla (at) Carla4NHSenate (dot) com.
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