MD-GOV: “the battlefield where the long liberal advance stopped”

Dan Henninger of the Wall Street Journal editorial page today:

We may look back on Maryland’s 2014 gubernatorial election as the battlefield where the long liberal advance stopped. In blue Maryland, and elsewhere, the Democrats are losing for the same reason medieval potentates fell: They resorted to plundering their own people.

Maryland’s victorious Republican gubernatorial candidate, Larry Hogan, deserves credit for alerting the population to the dangers of Democratic pillage. He ran hard on the reality that Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley in two terms raised some 40 taxes and fees, including the corporate income tax, sales tax, personal income tax and a “millionaire’s tax.” Maryland was a progressive Utopia. But it is the wave after wave of fees in Maryland and other states that is killing the Democrats politically.

The Maryland Democrats imposed or raised fees on anything that moved—license plates, liquor, fishing, birth and death certificates, even something called “storm water management fees” based on the size of people’s roofs, driveways, patios and such. Bridge and tunnel tolls rose every year from 2011 to 2013.

Less noticed outside Massachusetts than the election of Republican Charlie Baker as governor was that voters also overturned a law that ratcheted up the state’s gasoline tax each year at the inflation rate. No more.

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