SC State Senator: ‘Damn Right I Ordered The Screw You Yankee Tax!’
Monday, we reported about a proposed bill in South Carolina that would charge new South Carolina residents a $500 one-time fee to obtain a driver’s license and car registration — a "Yankee tax," if you will.
Wonkette commenter Bindersfulofhostbodies asked a very relevant set of questions: "Why is it called a 'Yankee tax'? Is that a legislator’s name for it, or was it the media’s contribution? I ask because if it’s the Republicans calling their own bill that, then they are blatantly admitting to political discrimination, and no, you can’t target special taxes at just the people of the Party or blue state you don’t like. People from southern states also move to SC. So what makes it 'Yankee'?"
It's true that calling the fee a "Yankee tax," even if ironically, seems like South Carolina lawmakers are outright broadcasting their discriminatory intent. Granted, this is the same state that unironically flew the Confederate battle flag over the capitol. They like to give discrimination a bullhorn down in South Carolina.
As for what makes a Yankee, growing up in South Carolina, it seemed the unofficial classification for "Yankee" was anyone from a state that hadn't fought to keep my ancestors in chains. "Yankee" was usually a pejorative, and that's how Republican state Sen. Stephen Goldfinch, the "Yankee tax" bill author, seemed to use the term when discussing the bill during an appearance on Fox News yesterday.
PREVIOUSLY: Welcome To South Carolina! Now Pay Your Carpetbagging 'Yankee' Tax.
Fox News anchor Ashley Strohmier described the "Yankee tax" as a response to a “growing number of Northerners fleeing their blue states and flocking south." It's as if she's describing a migrant caravan. It's not just so-called "blue state" refugees fueling the population surge in South Carolina. People from North Dakota, Kansas, West Virginia, Indiana, Louisiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, Texas, Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina are also moving to the Palmetto state.
Goldfinch told Strohmier that he came up with the bill because "locals are losing their quality of life." He noted that a million new people moved to South Carolina in the past decade and they expect another million in the next decade. Population growth is good and lowers the risk of unsightly tumbleweed sprawl, yet Goldfinch insists South Carolina is "inundated with people, mostly from the northeast." This is flat-out untrue: Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts, for instance, had fewer transplants to South Carolina in 2019 than Kentucky and Tennessee. Texas contributed more to South Carolina's population that year than New Jersey. And more Floridians headed north than New Yorkers headed south.
He whined some more about newcomers overwhelming South Carolina's infrastructure, again ignoring President Joe Biden's big daddy infrastructure bill, which will deliver an estimated $6 billion over the next five years in federal funding for the state's highways and bridges.
Goldfinch said he understood why people from "blue states" were seeking "refuge" in South Carolina, but he wanted his political strawman to pay its fair share.
Strohmier suggested that the $500 fee wasn't punitive enough for those fancy-pants residents of "blue states" where "dinner with your husband or wife on a random Wednesday is upwards of $500."
Maybe that's her New York City life, but it's not everyone's. I had my drag queen Satanic Bible study on Wednesdays, and it was potluck. Goldfinch agreed with Strohmier that Yankees are already used to "paying a lot of money." Then she thanked him for explaining the "new tax [he's] proposing." I guess raising taxes is good if you're screwing the right people (from the Left).
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."