After driving up the cost of soda and other sugary drinks with a new tax, the mayor of Philadelphia is now trying to blame businesses for charging higher prices (and for the outrage those prices have generated).
Mayor Jim Kenney, who proposed the soda tax and championed its passage through city council last year, told reporters on Tuesday it's not the new 1.5-cents-per-ounce tax that's making it more expensive to buy a can of Coke in Philly. No, according to the mayor, those higher prices are caused by city businesses price gouging their customers in order to stir up opposition to the tax.
This isn't a small tax.
The distributors sells five-gallon boxes of syrup that can be used in soda fountains, and each box costs a retailer about $60. Thanks to the city's new tax, though, retailers have to pay $57.60 in taxes for each of those boxes of syrup.
That's a stunning 96% tax on one product. The public is rightly pissed off about their price increase. Now, the idiot mayor thinks that he can shift the blame to the businesses for their "price gouging".