ATLANTA - Members of Atlanta’s Tea Party Patriots say they’re not surprised by a Channel 2 Action News poll that showed a proposed penny sales tax for transportation may not get past voters.
The Rosetta Stone poll showed 42 percent of voters support the referendum and 45 percent oppose it, with that number drastically higher in the suburbs.
The one cent sales tax is on the ballot in the July 31 state primary. It would raise more than $6 billion for transportation projects in 10 metro Atlanta counties. Other regions of Georgia will vote on their own version.
Members of the Tea Party Patriots told Channel 2 political reporter Lori Geary that they are just starting their push to defeat the TSPLOST, but supporters dispute the poll and say the tea party is against traffic relief and thousands of new jobs.
“Eighty-seven percent of metro Atlantans agree we have a transportation problem," Jeff Dickerson told Geary. Dickerson represents a group that is pushing for the transportation tax.
“People who live the farthest out and have to commute the farthest distance are going to get the most benefit," Dickerson said.
Dickerson’s group showed Geary the results of its own poll that showed support for the transportation referendum at 51 percent compared with 36 percent against the plan.
"[They are] saying no to 200,000 new jobs that are going to be created. No to $19 billion in new income and yes to a lot more congestion," Dickerson said.
Debbie Dooley, cofounder of the Tea Party Patriots, is teaming up with the DeKalb County NAACP and the Sierra Club against the referendum. Dooley told Geary she has to think outside the box because she doesn’t have the money to advertise.
"People have to ask themselves, ‘Have my elected officials been spending my tax dollars wisely,’ If the answer is no, then why on earth would you vote to give them more tax dollars?" Dooley said. "We've been saying all along we would defeat this because this is a tax."
| Rosetta Stone Poll- 5/20
|margin of error +/-3%||