UPDATED: Margin calls: How do Democrats stand on the teachers' tax?

Incredibly, four days after this post, not one Democrat has responded to my request for a position on the margins tax initiative, which will be on the 2014 ballot.

So I have decided to start making what I will dub margin calls, asking on the phone what I cannot get through email.

I will update as I get answers -- or don't -- and I will update the other post, too.

UPDATED, 7/29/13: More from Justin Jones.

UPDATED, 7/24/13:

I attended a clean energy roundtable at the Springs Preserve and asked the three Democratic lawmakers who were there what their positions were on the margins tax that will be on the ballot next year. The results were....depressing.

First up: Tyrone Thompson, the Democratic assemblyman who replaced the expelled Steven Brooks. I grabbed him as he walked out of the event.

He may be literally the only lawmaker with an excuse for not yet taking a stand, having only been a lawmaker for a couple of months.

"I'm reading all the transcripts," he told me, referring to the hearings on the tax. "Anything that helps education, I want to look into."

And then, poof, he was gone.

Next: Democratic Assemblywoman Heidi Swank.

"You're so predictable," she began. Guilty.


"In general, I'm supportive of education." Ugh.

But what about a position?

"There's still lots of discussion to be had," she dodged.

But she knew all about the tax from Carson City, didn't she?

"There's still lots of discussion to be had." she repeated.

And then, poof, she was gone.

Finally, I cornered panelist Justin Jones, the Democratic state senator who may be in the toughest spot of all because his is the pivotal seat in the upper house.

He demurred, saying, "I need to talk to a couple of people. I will get back to you later in the week."

Talk to whom?

The teachers union, for example, he told me.

Hmmm. Might he be a NO, but wants to let the backers know before telling me. I await his reply.

So, the current tally is updated. No one in the Assembly will take a stand so far. And only two in the Senate, and neither is on the ballot next year.

I am starting to think there are actually caucus instructions not to do so they don't anger the teachers and/or don't actually create an issue by stating their position.

Still pathetic after all these years.



First up: state Sen. Kelvin Atkinson:

"I'm for it," he told me.


"With the lack of anything else that’s substantive, we’ve done everything we could," he said. "It’s a great way to get revenue for education. It’s probably the best thing we have."

See how painless that was, Democrats?

So either email me or you have a margin call coming.