Will violent video games join cigarettes and liquor among the ranks of consumer products subject to a vice tax?
The Amarillo Globe News is reporting that Republican gubernatorial candidate Star Locke wants to scrap Texas' current property tax system. Instead, Locke would institute new taxes on abortion providers, soft drinks, and violent video games to fund the state's government.
Locke, a rancher and builder from Corpus Christi, favors a 50% tax on violent games, as well as a $10,000 tax per abortion and a 10% levy on sweetened soft drinks.
"One of my legislative proposals is to do away with property taxes statewide," Locke said. "I take the position that the Founding Fathers took: that the power to tax is the power to destroy. So our concept is that we need to tax things we don't want and you want to not tax things that you want to encourage."
How would Locke determine which games would be taxed?
The candidate told the Globe News he would create a 10-member panel to determine which games are violent. Taxes would then be levied against game publishers. The same board would also decide whether video game ads portrayed violence.
"Once it's reviewed, the tax would be levied swiftly."
Locke faces a March primary against incumbent Gov. Rick Perry and two others.