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Doheny, Stefanik clash over tax pledge

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Republican Congressional candidates Elise M. Stefanik and Matthew A. Doheny, who will face each other in a primary on June 24, traded digital blows Tuesday morning over the Americans for Tax Reform pledge created by Grover Norquist.

Ms. Stefanik wrote in a Facebook post dated May 5 that she would not sign the Americans for Tax Reform pledge. Instead, she wrote, she has made a promise directly to voters that she will not vote to raise taxes.

“That is why I will only make one pledge during the course of my campaign and that pledge is to you, the people of this district. Unlike other candidates in this race, I will not sign a pledge from any Washington DC based special interest group. Our district deserves an independent representative who will challenge the failed status quo of Washington, not make pledges to it,” she wrote.

Mr. Doheny criticized Ms. Stefanik, a Harvard graduate, for not putting her promise in writing.

“As a New York taxpayer, I know firsthand the real costs of property, income and business taxes in this state. The ATR pledge is not just some rhetorical policy abstraction for the Harvard Debate Club, it’s a statement of our unwavering belief that New Yorkers are taxed too much and we can take no more. Unlike Stefanik, I don’t believe Paul Ryan and the other representatives who signed the pledge are part of a ‘failed status quo,’ I believe they are the only thing in the way of higher taxes,” Mr. Doheny said in a news release.

— DPF

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