by J.D. Davidson
Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost continues to receive support and criticism from groups throughout Ohio a day after announcing a lawsuit challenging requirements in the federal American Rescue Plan.
Policy Matters Ohio, a nonprofit progressive think tank, called Yost’s decision to seek an injunction to stop the state’s obligation to not cut taxes if it accepts more than $5 billion off base.
“Ohio badly needs these funds to fight the virus and make the investments to allow Ohioans to get back on their feet,” Policy Matters Ohio Director Zach Schiller said in a statement. “As bold as it is, the rescue plan won’t make up for all the resources certain Ohio politicians drained from our communities to hand out tax cuts and tax breaks to the wealthy and few corporations. Ohio lawmakers shouldn’t waste funds pursuing that same failed policy.”
Yost said Wednesday his goal was protecting the state’s ability to make its decisions about tax and economic policy. He filed a request for an injunction in the U.S. District Court of Southern Ohio to bar what he called the enforcement of the “Tax Mandate” to the American Rescue Plan at the last minute.
Yost responded to critics Thursday on Twitter.
“If you were not planning to buy a car, but the government told you that you couldn’t, you’d be angry at the government overreach,” Yost tweeted. “Ohio isn’t planning a tax cut, but this law’s ‘direct or indirect’ language is so broad as to turn Ohio’s tax policy over to federal bureaucrats.”
Other groups applauded Yost’s effort.
“Bravo to Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost for defending the basic principle that it is up to Ohio to set its own tax policy, thank you very much,” said Robert Alt, president and CEO of The Buckeye Institute, an educational and research think tank. “Washington’s condescending attempt to force bad tax policy on the states for years to come is blatantly unconstitutional, and Ohio is fortunate to have an Attorney General willing to lead the charge on this important question of federalism.”
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An Ohio native, J.D. Davidson is a veteran journalist with more than 30 years of experience in newspapers in Ohio, Georgia, Alabama and Texas. He has served as a reporter, editor, managing editor and publisher. He is regional editor for The Center Square.