Will the red-state model work?
There’s an interesting article in today’s Wall Street Journal about how Republicans are trying to implement a “red-state model” across state governments they control. In the majority of states, both the governorship and the state legislature are all controlled by the same party, which means at the state level we can see policies that are far more to the right, or to the left for that matter, than what can come out of Washington.
The red-state model is about cutting income taxes and cutting government spending, but raising sales taxes which Republicans, for some reason, like better than income taxes. Sam Brownback, the governor of Kansas, is spotlighted as a key proponent of the red-state model. (That’s the same Sam Brownback who raised his hand at a Republican debate to indicate that he doesn’t believe in evolution.)
I think the red-state model could have some benefits for states the implement it. It’s a lot easier to move between states than it is to move between countries, so it’s possible that we could see rich people moving to low-tax states, while undesirable poor people move out of those same states because they can get better welfare benefits in blue states.
But I’ve previously wondered why rich people don’t all move out of New York City for places that offer a much lower cost of living. It was even a question asked by Hannah in the first season of the HBO series Girls. What’s going to change if Kansas becomes slightly more attractive than it already is? Most rich people would rather pay high taxes than have to live in state where everyone is a gun-toting redneck and a Jesus freak (or at least that’s how rich people perceive it).