On the same day that Democrats lost the New Jersey and Virginia governors’ mansions, the state-by-state push to limit taxes and spending lost momentum. Maine voters nixed a Taxpayer Bill of Rights measure 60 to 40 percent. Washington state voters defeated similar legislation 57 to 43 percent. In both cases, wrote Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne, opponents “made a case for what government does, why it’s important and why cutbacks in public services can be harmful to citizens and the common good.” He further observed: “It’s true that Washington and Maine have been reliably Democratic in recent presidential elections. But this is precisely why the defeat of these anti-tax measures was so important. Anti-government crusaders were getting ready to argue that if TABOR measures could pass in blue states, theirs was the wave of the future.”
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