Thursday, February 15, 2007

Granholm to GOP: Show backbone to relieve budget crisis

Governor fires back-

LANSING -- Gov. Jennifer Granholm ratcheted up the rhetoric today surrounding the state's budget crisis, calling for Republican lawmakers to show some "courage and backbone" in addressing the $800 million deficit.

Senate Republicans on Wednesday rejected Granholm's plan to eliminate the deficit, which is centered around a new 2-cent tax on services. Republican leaders said the state's red ink can be erased with budget cuts.

"I call upon Republicans to have the courage and backbone to put a specific plan on the table and put up the votes for a plan," Granholm said in an early morning news conference.

"I'm not going to shadow box. If they don't like this plan, what is their plan?"

Good question. What is their plan? We have known about this problem since around Xmas of last year- going on two months now. Are we supposed to read their minds?

Maybe it goes a little something like this-

Republicans: I'm thinking of a number...

Granholm: 42

Republicans: Wrong! You're not showing any leadership! And you are picking on us in the press! We need more time!

Republicans said Tuesday they believe it's their responsibility to find additional budget cuts before asking citizens to pay more taxes. Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop, R-Rochester, said his caucus would propose its own budget-balancing plan in the coming weeks.

"Republicans are pushing a fiscally responsible approach to this crisis," Bishop said. "We have a constitutional obligation to balance the budget."

WHERE? Where are Republicans pushing a "fiscally responsible approach"?

No, seriously, where IS the Republican fiscal responsibility? Are they being responsible when they continuously mouth the words "cut" and never tell us what they would cut? Are they being responsible when they axed $2 billion from the budget last year, tanking our ratings with Wall Street and leaving business in limbo for months on end, and never offering a replacement, unless you count the legislation that is sure to face certain veto? Are they being responsible when they knew this was coming, and yet still say "give us another couple of weeks"? Is that what you call "responsible"?


And to show us just how "responsible" they are, they next pull out the 'ol Rovian Projection trick- attack your opponent with your own weakness. Classic.

Asked about the governor’s comments, Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop, R-Rochester, said Granholm’s strong rhetoric isn’t matched by a commitment to address the serious problems facing the state, and indicates a “sense of insecurity” about her own proposal.

HAHAHA! At least she has the guts to put a plan on the table. I think we have ascertained exactly who is "insecure" here- it's the people that won't tell us what they would do.

Karl is smiling somewhere.

Next, cry about your treatment. Such the victims.

Bishop said “conducting a fight in the media is not productive,” and shows a lack of leadership. Legislative Republicans are working on alternatives, he said, and will present them as soon as possible.

We know what "as soon as possible" means to these guys- a quarter past never.

Crisis grows everyday they delay- and they could have passed the cuts now, they are choosing to play politics instead.

Granholm said the Senate could have passed her executive order budget cuts now and if they don't favor the tax increase they could approve more reductions later. Budget Director Bob Emerson said Republicans' contention that they can't approve the executive order because it implies support for a future tax hike is "a feeble excuse."

"The crisis is upon us. Every day we wait exacerbates the crisis," Granholm said.

She added she doesn't believe Republicans can muster the support for the deep program reductions it would take to balance the budget.

"I would like to see how many senators are willing to vote for school cuts in the middle of the school year," Granholm said.

Yeah, me too. Will be great for '08- I bet if the Republicans try hard enough, they can turn the state deep blue by then.