Carla A. Howell (born 1955) is an American political activist. She is President of the Center For Small Government and heads the Alliance to Roll Back Taxes, the Massachusetts ballot initiative to roll back the sales tax from its new high of 6.25% to 3%.
Carla Howell led three Massachusetts ballot initiatives in the last ten years, all of which were/are the boldest tax-cut initiatives to make the ballot in the United States. Two proposed to eliminate the Massachusetts income tax (2002, 2008) and one to cut the Massachusetts sales tax in half (2010).
Both the campaigns she supports and the Center For Small Government which she heads are focused on advancing a small government agenda with an emphasis on cutting taxes, cutting government spending and removing wasteful and unnecessary government regulations and bureaucracy. Her aim is to substantially shrink Big Government at all levels through campaigns: ballot initiatives and candidates for public office. She was active with the Libertarian Party through 2005; since then she has been nonpartisan and has supported small government Libertarian, Republican and independent candidates.
Carla Howell was the Massachusetts Libertarian Party candidate in the race for U.S. Senate in 2000, which was won by Democrat Ted Kennedy. Howell received 11.9% of the vote (a total of 308,860 votes), only 1% behind the Republican, making Howell's the most successful third party Senate race in America in 2000, according to Campaigns and Elections magazine.
Howell released a spoof tax song, which she composed and sang, titled "How Could I Live Without Filing Taxes," in 2001. In 2002, she sponsored a ballot measure to end the income tax in Massachusetts. It was the largest tax cut proposal ever placed on the ballot in United States history, yet it almost won with 45.3% of the vote in a state that has historically been in favor of governmental solutions.
In 2004, Howell declined to run for President of the United States. In 2007, she, along with fellow co-chair Michael Cloud, re-formed the Committee For Small Government (the group behind the 2002 effort to end the income tax). Their second attempt to end the income tax lost but garnered more votes than the first attempt in 2002.
She ran for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002 in the race won by Mitt Romney. She ran for State Auditor in 1998 winning the endorsement of the Boston Herald.
Carla Howell is a great-granddaughter of the Honorable William Eustis Russell, a Democrat elected Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and a granddaughter of 1950s Boston socialite Margaret Russell Howell.
2010 tax measure
- Alliance to Roll Back Taxes
- The Center for Small Government
- Carla Howell web site
- Committee For Small Government ballot initiative website
- US Libertarian Party web site
- Downloadable audio interview (timed out) with Free Talk Live
- 4 petitions clear 1st obstacle (dead link)
The original version of this article was taken from Wikipedia's article about Carla Howell under the GFDL license in effect at the time.