Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker is hell-bent on enacting a gas tax that would pinch you in the pocketbook just as runaway inflation is already driving up prices at the pump, the supermarket, the used car lot, and just about everywhere else. What is wrong with this man?

Baker continues to tout the unpopular Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI) that could significantly impact the price you pay for a gallon of gasoline. The idea is so bad, especially right now, that even the governors of all of the other New England states have opted out. As of now, only D.C.'s progressive Democrat Mayor Muriel Bowser is still on board.

The official Commonwealth website clearly indicates why it is not a good time to talk about increasing gas prices. Does Baker ever read it?

Baker's likely Republican primary opponent Geoff Diehl told Boston Public Broadcasting Station WGBH that the "cap and invest" initiative would be nothing more than "an additional tax on commuters." Diehl said the Sierra Club no longer supports the proposal because it wouldn't do enough to lower emissions.

Baker said the carbon reduction tax could reduce auto emissions by as much as 26 percent and generate $1.8 billion in new revenue for transportation projects – but some believe the gasoline tax would increase by as much as 50 cents per gallon, which would have a negative impact on businesses, not to mention consumers.

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Baker is out of touch with the people of the Commonwealth who seek lower, not higher, taxes and would not support an increase in the gas tax, now or ever. That was proven when voters in 2014 solidly rejected an effort to raise the gas tax. They easily repealed a 2013 law that tied gas tax increases to inflation. By the way, Diehl led the drive to repeal that tax.

We've just spent the last year and a half battling Charlie Baker's ridiculous COVID mandates that destroyed many Massachusetts businesses, and now we have to fight to keep Baker from raising the gas tax, another anti-business initiative.

Email Charlie Baker and tell him to give Massachusetts a break and abandon his TCI gas tax once and for all.

Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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