Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Barth: raise taxes on alcohol

In Rapid City during his run for US House Jeff Barth stuck his hand out after greeting the couple before me and after introducing myself he said, "you're a little bigger than I am." My 6'2" 173 pound frame and his 6'1" likely-more-than-that laughed simultaneously. I didn't hesitate: "where you at on the so-called War on Drugs?" It fell right out of my mouth. "It's crazy," he replied. He described a future where, as long as law enforcement can easily test drivers stopped for some other infraction, cannabis law should look just like alcohol law.
Doubling the excise tax would bring in another $14 million, helping close Governor Daugaard’s budget gap. But I doubt it will happen. We have elected people who are distributors of beer and liquor. They are not in Pierre to take care of people. They are there to protect their own profits. Other are plied with free drinks and food daily by friendly lobbyists to assure their resistance to taxing booze.
Read the rest here.

During the 2014 South Dakota Democratic Convention in Yankton Barth and the Minnehaha County people took this straggler into their ranks while pressing the caucus on strict adherence to the rules with vigorous confidence. At that time I lobbied Barth to bring higher wages to Sioux Falls. Now he is taking that concept to community organizers.

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