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OH-Gov: Nearly 50 percent tax increase needed to fund Dem candidate's plans, study shows

A study estimates that a 46 percent tax increase would be required to fund Democratic Ohio gubernatorial candidate Richard Cordray's priorities. (Angelo Merendino/Getty Images)

Richard Cordray, the Democratic candidate for governor of Ohio, has some expensive ideas, and a new study estimates that Ohio residents could be faced with a steep increase in taxes to pay for them, according to The Washington Free Beacon.

Cordray's proposals, several of which are aimed at improving the state's education system, could require a nearly 50 percent tax increase to fund them, although Cordray has said he would not raise taxes if elected.

“The outlandish promises being made just aren’t realistic,” state House Speaker Ryan Smith said, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

What does Cordray want to do?

Cordray's plan includes initiatives to:

  • Implement universal preschool
  • Make direct payments to charter schools
  • Replenish the local government fund
  • Pay down a debt from infrastructure projects
  • Offer financial aid to community college students

State Republicans estimate that Cordray's proposals could cost about $4 billion per year, $16 billion over the course of Cordray's term, requiring a 46.28 percent tax increase to fund them.

A spokeswoman for the Cordray campaign pushed back on the GOP's cost estimates, saying that Republicans are offering no proof and that Cordray "has continually said that anyone who understands Ohio’s budget knows we are running big surpluses."

Cordray said he believes his initiatives can be funded within current tax revenues and by utilizing additional sales taxes collected on internet purchases, as well as the state's rainy day fund.

Republicans won't allow it?

Regardless of whether Cordray or GOP candidate Attorney General Mike DeWine is the state's next governor, Republicans will likely maintain control of the state legislature, which would make it difficult or impossible for Cordray to raise taxes if he decided he needed to.

“Richard Cordray, unlike Santa Claus, doesn’t have a magic bag that he can reach into and grab a billion dollars here or four billion dollars there,” Senate President Larry Obhof said.

Recent projections give DeWine a slight edge over Cordray in the midterm race.

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