National Taxpayers Union

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National Taxpayers Union (NTU) is a taxpayer advocacy organization. It was founded in 1969 by James Dale Davidson, and has as its president Duane Parde. NTU publishes a ballot guide that focuses on how ballot measures will impact taxpayers in different states, and these explanations are posted on some of ballotpedia's articles.[1]

Additionally, NTU has a taxpayer blog.[2] NTU also manages a coalition of organizations devoted to transparency in state spending, and sponsors the Show Me the Spending portal on Sunshine Review.

Ballot guides

Prior to election season, staff at NTU spend several months researching and analyzing the ballot measures slated to appear across the nation. The study focuses only on ballot measures with taxpayer impact, and assesses how each measure would impact taxpayers. Such guides prove particularly helpful to taxpayers as they prepare to vote: the language of some measures may be confusing, and measures' titles can bias the voter or overlook key components of the measure. NTU's ballot guides note that "This guide is for informational purposes only; it is not intended to provide endorsements or recommendations to voters." According to a press release, NTU's 2008 study
...identified 106 ballot questions in 34 states that would affect taxpayers. Measures that could lower taxes or control government include:
  • Massachusetts' Question 1, which would repeal the state individual income tax by 2010;
  • North Dakota's Statutory Measure No. 2, which would lower the state corporate income tax by 15 percent and cut the state personal income tax in half;
  • Arizona's Proposition 105, which would require a majority of electors to pass tax- or spending-hike plans; and
  • South Dakota's Initiated Measure 10, which would prohibit taxpayer funds from being used for lobbying and create an online state spending database.[3]

To see NTU's ballot guides, view the following:

Obstacles to NTU's 2008 ballot guide

The National Taxpayers Union seeks to inform its members in every state about how ballot measures would impact them as taxpayers. Those attempts have been temporarily foiled in Florida, however, since that state has election laws that would require NTU to disclose private information about its 362,000 plus members if NTU were to disseminate information about Florida's ballot measures. On October 8th, 2008, the National Taxpayers Union began legal action to seek suspension of these laws, which violate First Amendment rights to freedom of speech. The Institute for Justice is representing NTU and other organizations in this legal action. Read more about the lawsuit from NTU's press release.[4]

Ballot Results

The National Taxpayers Union also provides post-election analysis on the results of fiscal ballot measures.

Policy positions

The group is best known for its work to enact constitutional limits on government taxes, spending and debt. It played a major role in passage of Federal income tax indexing, so inflation no longer bumps taxpayers into higher brackets. It also played a major role in passage of "Taxpayer Bill of Rights" laws that help to safeguard against IRS abuses and legislation protecting innocent spouses from having to pay tax debts. NTU supports transparency on a statewide level, and sponsors the Show Me the Spending portal on Sunshine Review.

NTU favors the flat tax[5] and the FairTax for the United States[6] as opposed to the current income tax system now in use.

Supported ballot measures

Pension reform

The National Taxpayers Union provided $48,000 to help fund a pension reform initiative in Tucson, AZ.[7]

NTU Websites

  • NTU's campaign and online petition to end the taxpayer bailouts of reckless Wall Street bankers, corporations, and consumers.
  • NTU's get-out-the-vote effort to encourage voters to vote against government officials who have voted to raise taxes on their constituents.
  • No New Energy Taxes - NTU's project showing how energy taxes will raise the prices for consumers.
  • Government Bytes - NTU's Blog



National Taxpayers Union Foundation

The National Taxpayers Union Foundation (NTUF) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization. Founded in 1977, NTUF’s mission is to provide timely and original information promoting the benefits of lower taxes and limited government. NTUF’s work covers a wide range of public policy issues including: tax reform, economic growth, Congressional budget tracking, interest group analysis, entitlement reforms, and government spending analysis.[12]

NTUF Projects


NTUF's BillTally project estimates the costs or savings of bills introduced into the U.S. Congress that would have a net impact of over $1 million on the US Budget. The cost analysis are then cross indexed with the sponsors or cosponsors to determine the federal spending or savings proposed by individual members of Congress. The NTUF staff utilizes Congressional Budget Office reports, news reports, Congressional offices, previous estimates, and other sources to complete this project. Using this methodology, NTUF estimates that they are able to score 95% of bills introduced in Congress.


NTUF's VoteTally utilizes BillTally estimates to assess the cost or savings of every vote that effects the federal budget in excess of $1 million. The methodology is intended to reflect the overall budget pressure that each member of Congress' votes place on the federal budget.

2008 Ballot Information

NTU and NTUF have compiled information for voters on their 2008 Elections page.

  • Presidential Election: Studies include a cost analysis of new spending programs proposed by the candidates, a snapshot of the Presidential and Vice Presidential nominees fiscal records in Congress, and other studies and releases on the candidates.
  • Congressional Election: NTUF has completed an analysis of the new programs proposed by candidates in select US Senate Races. In addition, NTU conducted its bi-annual Congressional Candidate Survey to assess candidates' positions on various taxes and reform measures.
  • State Ballot Measures: The 2008 NTU Taxpayer Ballot Guide contains over 100 state ballot questions that are appearing in ballots November 4, 2008.

External links