"I have said this before. Taxation on Social Security should not be an upside down issue. It should not be a partisan issue."
Well hallelujah! Never thought I would see the day! We finally have a bill coming out of the House with some relief for senior citizens in Minnesota. Was it what I was hoping for? No. But it is a start. It takes us off the "bad boy" list of only 6 remaining states who fully tax Social Security. And that is huge!
Okay - that is the good news. Now here are the facts. First off, prior to 1984, Social Security was not taxed. Then (and I hate to say it), under Ronald Reagan's term in 1984, he signed a bill which allowed the taxation of 50% of social security benefits paid. That was a huge mistake. But you know government - a little bit is never enough. In 1993, Bill Clinton signed into law the bill which would allow the 50% rate to go up to 85%. That was even a bigger mistake. And that is where we stand from a federal perspective.
From the state viewpoint, Minnesota is long overdue to address the issue of taxing social security benefits. Even though it is finally being addressed (to a limited degree) this year and resides in a House tax bill, different representatives have told me the same thing. "Well, we will see what happens. Eliminating Social Security taxes would be very expensive for the state." Excuse me? What do you mean "expensive"? If it is so expensive, how in the world can the vast majority of states have either totally or partially eliminate it?
I will tell you how. Minnesota is addicted to spending. It is as clear as day when you see the budget priorities that the Governor has laid out. Tax relief? No way, Jose! The Governor needs money for light rail. And the total loser called the North Star. That train is losing a ton of money with each trip. But that is okay. The Governor now wants more money to extend this POS up to St. Cloud. That is only the tip of the iceberg. The Governor wants more spending on everything, up to and including the kitchen sink.
Here is the bottom line. The citizens of this state who pay most of the bills want significant tax relief. Tax relief on the corporate tax, the high end of the income tax, inheritance taxes, sales tax, and the Social Security tax. The subjects in this state, led my their populist and progressive Governor, just want to spend other people's money on more garbage. The citizens and the subjects have non-conflatable visions. Totally and undeniably.
I have said this before. Taxation on Social Security should not be an upside down issue. It should not be a partisan issue. Even the subjects should understand this one. After all, if we are blessed to live long enough, we will all of us, be affected by having a main source of income unfairly taxed by an intrusive government.