The long-rumored, and reported, tax increase campaign is finally here.

Former Denver Post “reporter” Curtis Hubbard announced this afternoon via press release the kickoff of the billion dollar tax hike campaign, tentatively titled Initiative 22.

Initiative 22 will seek to scrap Colorado’s flat tax of 4.63% and replace it with a two-tiered system, just as Complete Colorado’s Peter Blake reported two weeks ago, raising rates to 5% for income under $75,000 and 5.9% for income over $75,000.

That represents a tax increase of 8% and 27% respectively for the two income brackets.

In a sign of their stellar math skills, tax hike proponents insist that because over the last five years Colorado has reduced spending by a total of a billion dollars we need to raise taxes by a billion dollars every year.

Polling has also demonstrated the ludicrous nature of the tax hike campaign, as a poll that oversampled Democrats found the initiative failing 35-56. The two-tiered tax hike that proponents are pushing was found to be the least popular option in that poll.

The backers of this initiative struggle not only with math, but coalition building skills as well. Business groups who were open to potentially supporting a flat tax increase, are in opposition to any graduated, or tiered, tax system.

Who will be left holding the bag? It looks like a washed up former Denver Post reporter, some teacher union types, and maybe (but we’re not sure yet) Governor Hickenlooper.