Contempt for the poor

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A former pastor and member of the Faith Chapel Church in Billings, Tom McGillvray, is once again demonstrating what true Christian charity means to some people. McGillvray, the Republican majority leader of the Montana House of Representatives, has again introduced legislation specifically targeting the very poorest among us at a time when many are unemployed and forming long lines at local food banks throughout the state. In the beginning of the 2011 session, this good Christian led a proposal designed to block implementation of 2010’s federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in Montana—even though he enjoys taxpayer-funded health care.

Now once again the good Christian has decided the poor have it much too good. He has introduced House Bill 596, which would abolish income tax in the state for those who actually have taxable income, and replace it with the most regressive tax there is on those who do not: the unemployed and the poor. Although McGillvray freely admits this switch would not significantly improve the state’s fiscal situation; it would, however, certainly benefit McGillvray. As a partner in the Billings financial planning firm McGillvray, Kallem and Hackmann, McGillvray believes it only fair that the state of Montana not continue to require him to pay state income taxes, and under his leadership, the state can make up for this loss of revenue by placing a new tax on food, clothing, gasoline and all the other basic necessities of life.

Watching McGillvray do his work in the House really does make one wonder what it is they teach there at the Faith Chapel Church in Billings.

Jim Lockwood



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