In evaluating the Tax Foundation’s views on taxes, it’s useful to know that the organization considers itself part of “the liberty movement.” To me, that indicates an aversion to taxation in general. That’s not un-American, but when the Tax Foundation criticizes a tax plan, that criticism might arise from a concern that the tax is too effective, and taking too much money from the private sector. See “States Should be Wary of ITEP Marijuana Tax Policy,” https://taxfoundation.org/itep-marijuana-tax-policy/. The original ITEP report, not tax-averse, is at https://itep.org/five-years-in-cannabis-tax-haul-rivals-or-exceeds-alcohol-taxes-in-many-states/.
The Tax Foundation’s support for taxing cannabis by price is based on its hope for low after-tax prices. Low prices are “a feature, not a bug, of legalization.” Sure, low prices help the fight against the black market, but cheap weed makes my public health friends nervous — because it low prices make it easier to get for kids and for the minority of consumers who overdo it. And taxes offset low pre-tax prices — and then there’s the revenue. Sure, revenue may not be declining in states with priced-based taxes, but it would be much higher with weight- or THC-based taxes.
The tweet below, indicating that working for the Tax Foundation is “a career in the liberty movement,” was retweeted by the Tax Foundation – an imprimatur.