Council Democratic leader JoAnne Sanders was even more to the point when asked by the Indianapolis Times about Cockrum's hunt for Democratic votes.When former Mayor Bart Peterson sought support for his income tax increase in 2007, Republicans aligned in opposition to the tax increase, promising voters that year there would be no tax increases if voters put them in charge of the City-County Council. One incumbent Republican councilor who voted for the tax increase, Scott Keller, got trounced at the polls. Keller had pledged not to raise taxes when he narrowly defeated Karen Horseman in 2003.
"The legislature gave us a "funding tool" to resolve a crisis the governor created. Now I hear the council president expects us to deliver 3 to 4 votes -- no call, no letter, no e-mail. Show me 15 Republican votes and we'll talk," Sanders said.
There are consequences when politicians say one thing to get elected and then do quite another thing once in office. Republicans should think long and hard before jumping off this cliff to which Mayor Ballard is leading. Ballard has already reneged on numerous campaign promises, including an anti-tax pledge. The Republican number of councilors shrunk by one earlier this year when Ed Coleman left the party to become a Libertarian. He differed with his caucus on a number of fiscal matters, including the CIB bailout.
Although the council resolution to be introduced next Monday to bail out the CIB will technically only include one tax increase, a hike in the hotel tax, making it the highest in the nation, a vote for this bailout is effectively a vote for raising more taxes in the future. Additional taxes will have to be raised by 2013 to fund the repayment of $27 million the plan calls for the CIB to borrow from the State of Indiana.