City Paper is not for tourists
So you’re a fiscally conservative D.C. resident. You now have to pay a nickel a pop for your grocery bags. You hate having to feed a bloated, overreaching local government $.05 or more every time you go shopping. And you would never consider one of those hippy-dippy NPR totes.
The D.C. Republican Committee understands your quandary! They’ve printed up several hundred reusable bags festooned with the local party logo and an admonition to “Bag The Bag Tax.”
Good timing, this. LL learns about these Republican totes on the same day that the bag tax hit the front page of the conservative house organ, the Wall Street Journal, which took a rather dim view of the bag fee’s execution.
This idea sprung from the fertile mind of D.C. GOP executive director Paul D. Craney; the bags are available to anyone who wants to give a $5 contribution to the organization. “We are trying to help D.C. residents not to pay a ridiculous tax,” Craney says.
Of course, this particular form of protest has the perverse effect of aiding the protestees: The whole point of the bag tax, its advocates have long said, was to get people to stop using disposable bags. If the tax receipts dip to zero, that’s the whole point.
Lead sponsor Tommy Wells, councilmember from Ward 6, says the GOP’s bag is “not surprising.”
“The Republican Party has a long tradition of not caring about the environment,” he e-mails. “Either that, or they don’t recognize a business-friendly measure when they see one. Stores are already reporting customers are using half the number of throw-away bags they used to.”
Says Craney, “Pollution is bad, but we think the tax is silly.”