In 2010, Sam Brownback, a sitting U.S. senator, ran for governor of Kansas on an economic platform created by the American Legislative Exchange Council, a group that specializes in promoting draft legislation.
Once elected, with help from Arthur Laffer – Ronald Reagan’s mastermind of trickle-down economics – Brownback convinced state legislators to cut personal income tax rates across the board and eliminate the top tax bracket. He promised to slash taxes on business owners and lower personal income tax rates, unleashing an economic renaissance in Kansas.
Kansas State Capital | Topeka
The tax cuts were sold by Brownback with the idea that they would pay for themselves when a renewed economy boosted state revenues despite the lower rates.
At least that was the plan.
I have been following the story of Brownback’s tax cuts for a couple of years and it has grown more interesting as the results have come in and the impacts have become more clear.
For a comprehensive look at what was promised, what was delivered, and the results thus far, check out the recent article by Barry Ritholtz, Kansas Ends Bad Economic News by Not Reporting It, at Bloomberg.