Conservative Talk Radio Running from the Big Apple?

Rush Limbaugh — angered after an announcement that New York State plans to raise taxes for those earning over $500,000 per year — said on his Monday broadcast that he is going to cut all ties with the state of New York. “I told Mayor Bloomberg: I’ll be the first to lead the way,” said Limbaugh of his escape from the Big Apple.

Limbaugh transmits from a studio in his Florida residence but also has a studio and condominium in New York.

“When I am there working I pay whatever, you know, my rate is based on income for that day in New York…If it weren’t for hurricanes down here, I would never go up there.  New York is the escape valve in case hurricanes are showing up in our area, because of the loss of electricity.  So I’ll tell you what I’m going to do.  I’m going to look for an alternative studio somewhere outside New York, perhaps Texas — another no-income-tax state”

“I’ll sell my apartment. I’ll sell my condominium. I’m going to get out of there totally, ’cause this is just absurd, and it’s ridiculous, and it isn’t going to work,” said Limbaugh.

Limbaugh’s point is that the higher taxes are going to drive many of the highest-paid people out of New York and that the city is killing itself because these comparatively few people pay so much of the total revenue that New York collects and depends on.

According to Dr. Herbert London, president of the Hudson Institute, Professor of Humanities at New York University, and a New York resident, in New York City 1% of the population pays 52% of the states taxes. “By the time you get to get to 2 or 3% you’re talking about almost the entire New York State tax burden.”

New York City taxes are apparently going up by 5 % (to 10%).  When you include the New York State tax burden (5%) and add both to the the top federal income tax rate (which the Obama administration wants to raise to 40%) the total is 55%.  “That  means that the tax collectors are now more than a full partner in your life,” said London.

“You can work from December 31 till August for the government before you start earning one penny,” said London. “If you really want grim picture of what is happening in New York, this is a state that is dying. It’s dying because of these extraordinary taxes that are being imposed on a small portion of the citizenry and people like Rush — and I fit into the category as well — will ultimately say I can’t afford to live here anymore.”

So will all the high earners leave New York? Will other Conservative radio talk show hosts make the move? It doesn’t seem likely. HUMAN EVENTS asked New York native and talk radio host Sean Hannity if he planned to jump ship with Rush. “I have said on the air many times, that if there was any way possible I could move out of NY and do my jobs I would leave in a second for Florida with no state income tax.”

“It was in one of the local papers in the last couple of weeks, in a city of 8-9 million people around 42,242 pay fully half the taxes in New York City,” said Hannity. “New York City with Wall Street’s decline is going bankrupt and the state raises taxes dramatically and spending by 9%.  Federal, State, County, insane sales and property tax — it is as John McCain says …‘Generational theft.”’   

Just last December Gov. Paterson unveiled a budget plan that taxed over-eaters, digitally enhanced citizens, and “movie tickets, taxi rides, soda, beer, wine, cigars and massages.”

Monica Crowley, New York City based host of the “Monica Crowley Show” agrees that the state is dying.

“For as long as I can remember — and certainly since I’ve lived in New York — liberals argued that New York’s astronomical taxes were the ‘dues’ of living in the greatest city in the world,” Crowley told HUMAN EVENTS.

“As much as I love New York, it is no longer great because liberals have run the city and the state into the ground with reckless, freewheeling spending and, of course, the oppressive taxes that fund it.  You want to kill something?  Tax it.  I, for one, resent having to pay even more of my hard-earned money to subsidize their mistaken approach to ‘governing’ me.”

Conservative talk radio will survive though the Obama administration but will New York?