Teachers Unions in Oregon Think You Don't Need to Be Reminded About Possible Tax Hikes


From the Portland Oregonian:

The Oregon Education Association wants state legislators to remove the notice on ballot envelopes warning voters of a potential property tax hike in upcoming elections.

File:CTU Strikes for Smaller Class Sizes.jpg
Flickr: CTU Strikes for Smaller Class Sizes

Union officials say the warning, which the law now requires to be "boldly printed in red," unfairly singles out property tax measures and is not needed because the ballots themselves contain clear information about proposed tax hikes.

That's a pretty picayune concern for a teachers union, with no obvious connection to its stated purposes, wouldn't you say? Regardless of whether one thinks it necessary to have that warning at all, which was however passed by state voters via Measure 50 in 1997. Why might they care? 

"They do not want voters to know there is a tax vote on the ballot because they know if they open it up and look at it, they're more likely to vote no," said conservative tax activist Bill Sizemore, who wrote the initiative for the tax warning back in the 1990s.

Naah, says the union. We're just sayin' that the ballot doesn't need to be just sayin', you know?

[Union spokeswoman Becca] Uherbelau said the teachers union is not trying to depress turnout.

"Our history has shown that we have done a lot to increase voter participation," she said, noting that the union has frequently spent money encouraging people to vote in local school levy and bond elections.

Yes, teachers unions love people to get its people to vote the way it wants them to vote. 

Hat Tip: Walter Olson.