About the only thing that is certain about the budget this morning is that they missed the 5PM deadline that Dillon had set for yesterday, but that's not surprising considering that they have missed every other self-proclaimed deadline that had been set this year. You get to the point where you can't believe a word that comes out of their mouth because they have mislead the public at every turn with endless promises about the budget doing done on time, about "reforming government"... about everything. No major accomplishments, a whole year wasted.
We did learn that lawmakers are like delicate flowers that can't handle media scrutiny as they work in secret to destroy health care, public safety and education.
"I want to be careful about the process here," says House Speaker Andy Dillon, "I don't want to disrupt it - it's very delicate right now. They Senate's watching us closely, we're watching them closely. I don't want something in the media to disrupt where we're heading."
That's OK. When the public finds out what this Legislature has done here, there is a chance a lot of these people will be looking for new jobs anyway, and they won't have to worry about the media ever again.
Mike Bishop did take this opportunity to spit on the House once more.
I don't even know what he's proposed, yet. The House sends me lots of crazy things."
Respect. Right there. Can you feel the love?
The media silence and lack of agreement did give me the opportunity to look back over this year at the endless procrastination, though. Remember this one from April, when it was discovered we were merely $1.3B in the hole?
"We're going as deep as far as we can," said Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Ron JELINEK (R-Three Oaks). When asked if the whole $785 million would be addressed in cuts, he said. "I doubt it. I think that's pretty ambitious. We don't want to lay off the whole state."
Can't say that they didn't know this was coming. Revenues kept falling month by month, and they stood back, and they watched it happen, and they did nothing. On April 30th, it was a bunch of faux outrage coming from certain lawmakers over the State Fair. Big, bad governor and her cuts. Some people in the "media" were led to say things like this though:
Now what? And, how in the world do you do the budgets for FY 2010 with these numbers? Everyone who was complaining about the cuts already on the table - you better start thinking about working on selling new revenue. We all love the State Fair, but in light of these numbers, saving the local police department might have to come first.
Nah. Guess they didn't want to do that.
Don't worry, legislators. The media will be there for you when you get done. They, too, will look back at what you have "accomplished" this year. Then your name can be forever tied to destroying your local schools and police department, simply because you didn't have the spine to stand up for the things that matter, for the things that keep people safe, for the things like education and health care, for the things that we need to move this state forward and stay competitive.
You can be the ones who brought us destruction, and the media will be very happy to point that out. Wait and see.