October 10, 2014
Yesterday I received mail from the NC Democratic Party. While the mailer was directed against Speaker Thom Tillis, every charge in it is really directed at the North Carolina General Assembly. The Democratic Party is not very good at math.
1. They charge that Speaker Tillis cut $500 million in education. In the year before Speaker Tillis led the House, the budget for K-12 education was $7.3 Billion. This year the budget is $8.1 Billion. Fifth graders can figure that this is an increase of $800 Million. But Democrats say it is a $500 Million “cut”. The Washington Post awarded this lie “two Pinocchios”.
2. They charge “the wealthy got huge tax breaks” with two big pictures of a yacht and a helicopter. This mirrors Senator Hagan’s charge about the tax rate for jets and yachts. North Carolina has capped the sales tax paid on airplanes since 1957 and on boats since 1967. Speaker Tillis and the current General Assembly had nothing to do with it. While Senator Hagan was in charge of the Senate Budget Committee for years, she never attempted to change the rate. And this session not one single Democrat made any motion to change that rate. WRAL gave this claim a “red light” award as part of its fact check research.
3. Democrats say “Thanks to Speaker Thom Tillis, last year Wake schools lost 528 teaching positions”. The state budget funded 6,788 teachers last year and 6,977 teachers this year. This represents an increase of 189 teachers for Wake County. Democrats apparently can’t tell the difference between addition or subtraction.
Rep. Paul Stam
714 Hunter Street