Opposition has already ramped up with attack ads appearing online. Republican leadership, realizing the tax implications of the proposition as a tool for a party in need of a rallying theme, has gone all in to oppose it.
Democrats gave the proposition a major public relations lift in the ballot titling. They started with a disclaimer about raising taxes, listed the programs benefitting, claimed the budget will remain balanced and offered an annual “independent” audit.
Proposition CC: Retain revenue for education and transportation
WITHOUT RAISING TAXES AND TO BETTER FUND PUBLIC SCHOOLS, HIGHER EDUCATION, AND ROADS, BRIDGES, AND TRANSIT, WITHIN A BALANCED BUDGET, MAY THE STATE KEEP AND SPEND ALL THE REVENUE IT ANNUALLY COLLECTS AFTER JUNE 30, 2019, BUT IS NOT CURRENTLY ALLOWED TO KEEP AND SPEND UNDER COLORADO LAW, WITH AN ANNUAL INDEPENDENT AUDIT TO SHOW HOW THE RETAINED REVENUES ARE SPENT?
The Ciruli Associates polling question was more modest and straightforward in its description:
Proposition CC is a TABOR override to retain state tax revenue to fund public schools, higher education, and roads, bridges and transit. Do you favor or oppose the proposition to allow the state to keep and spend all the tax revenue it annually collects instead of the current requirement to refund the money to taxpayers?
The poll was conducted August 6-9, 2019, with 401 likely November Adams County voters (the area poll represents 77% of county), with plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.
The public tends to favor local TABOR overrides, but this one is for state government, which seldom has much voter support for tax increases, and Democrats made it permanent. The November 2019 turnout will be smaller, older and more conservative.
A couple of questions to ponder:
- Will Proposition CC’s November result affect Democratic 2020 momentum and Governor Polis’ and the Democratic leadership’s political reputations?
- Will the Proposition CC result affect the plans of liberal interest groups to take TABOR head-on next year?