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Politicians observe tax day [Updated]

April 15, 2010 |  5:47 pm

Let it never be said that each new day cannot present a new political opportunity – even the unpopular days.

This April 15, news releases from state politicians, incumbent and aspiring, rolled in wishing Californians a "Happy Tax Day" and even offering some interactive gimmicks on the theme.

Steve Poizner, the state insurance commissioner and a Republican candidate for governor, unveiled a Tax Cut Calculator showing how much he says Californians would save under his tax proposal (individual tax filers save about 50% more than families, as it turns out).

Then there is the Meg Whitman Tax Ticker by the independent expenditure group Level the Playing Field 2010, which is trying to help Democratic candidate for governor Jerry Brown, counting the time that Whitman, the leading Republican candidate, has not released her tax returns in response to its demands (51 days and counting). Brown and Poizner haven't released theirs either, but no tickers for them yet.

[Updated at 8:03 p.m.: Not to be outdone, another Democratic independent expenditure committee, the California Accountability Project, has released a video also focusing on Whitman's taxes, and offshore investments, complete with calypso music.]

And then there were some of the more obvious chances to hit on an ever politically popular theme, such as an attack by Assembly Republican leader Martin Garrick (R-Solana Beach) on Democrats as being responsible for high taxes.

And state Sen. Tony Strickland (R-Thousand Oaks), who is running for state controller, provided reporters with three audio quotes on the taxes theme, which are passed along here, just as they were to us, for your enjoyment:

Sound Bite #1 ("Taxed to the max") 

Sound Bite #2 (Californians "having to decide between a gallon of milk and a gallon of gas") 

Sound Bite #3 (Businesses are taxed "when they wake up in the morning") 

-- Michael Rothfeld in Sacramento