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Rep who pushed Maine carbon tax seen shopping in tax-free New Hampshire

Rep. Deane Rykerson (right), who sparked a huge public outcry in Augusta by proposing a 40 cent per gallon tax on gasoline and heating fuel last week was spotted shopping in tax-free Portsmouth, NH just days after the public hearing. Left photo shows picture of Rykerson’s car parked at Market Basket in Portsmouth, NH. (Photo credit Aaron Wiles).

Portsmouth, NH – Rep. Deane Rykerson, who sparked outrage last week in Augusta by proposing a bill that would have resulted in a 40 cent per gallon tax on gasoline and heating fuel when fully implemented was spotted Saturday shopping at a Market Basket in sales-tax free Portsmouth, NH.

Several tips came in to Maine Examiner showing a picture of Rykerson’s Toyota Prius, with a blue Maine House “1” license plate and featuring “Rykerson – Kittery” and “Bernie 2016” bumper stickers.

Maine Examiner tracked down the person who took the original picture and confirmed it was taken Saturday at the Market Basket on Woodbury Ave. in Portsmouth.

In the face of massive public opposition, Rykerson announced he would pull back his carbon tax proposal and ask for a study group to look at the issue instead.

More than 60 opponents of the bill testified at a marathon public hearing in Augusta, while only 2, Rykerson and a representative from an environmental group, testified in support.

Opponents said that adding 40 cents to every gallon of gas or heating fuel in Maine would ‘crush’ low-income Mainers and drive up the cost of almost all consumer goods.

Rykerson believes Mainers need to use less fuel and produce less carbon dioxide emissions.

Online reaction to the picture so far has largely been to call Rykerson a hypocrite for trying to drive up prices on Maine people but then shopping across the border in New Hampshire, where there is no sales tax.

New Hampshire’s gas tax is also lower than Maine’s gas tax by about 6 cents per gallon.

Original photo of Rep. Deane Rykerson parked at Market Basket in Portsmouth, NH just days after pushing a carbon tax that would have raised the cost of heating fuel and gasoline by 40 cents per gallon when fully implemented. Photo credit Aaron Wiles.

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