Sunday, September 13, 2009

Michigan House Dems May Roll Over For Senate Republican Cuts

Remember back when we were so happy to have Democrats win the Michigan House? Remember that?

Looks like I might end up eating my kind words for Andy Dillon. I guess I shouldn't have believed him when he said that he was "fighting to fund early education, scholarships for college students, Medicaid and funding police and fire." I guess he was flat-out lying for the cameras when he said that. Once again, Gongwer has the information that no one else will bring you.

A scenario is under discussion between Senate Republicans and House Democrats where the House next week would pass the Senate-passed budgets, which contain $1.2 billion in cuts, and then have the Legislature restore some of the reduced funding through supplemental bills after the 2009-10 fiscal year starts, Gongwer News Service has learned.

The concept remains tenuous and might unravel, Democratic and Republican sources said. However, sources described it as receiving serious consideration as a way to break the deadlock on completing a budget before October 1.

But it would only - maybe - get a budget through the Legislature, if at least 13 House Democrats joined the entire Republican caucus in support. It would then to gather enough Senate Democratic votes to give the bills immediate effect.

Just punt! And - get this - they are going to let the Senate dictate "supplemental" spending. Does anyone honestly think that Mike Bishop or Nancy Cassis or any Republican over there is going to vote for anything but extremist right wing policy? Get real.

Also very unclear is whether the two sides would agree to take up some of the proposals to raise revenue after the fiscal year begins as a way of funding some of the supplemental money. How, for example, Senate Republicans could be compelled to vote for revenue increases once a budget would be in place is uncertain.

That's easy. They won't. And then they will turn around and use all the cuts against the Democrats in the election next year. Count on it.

I can see the ads now.

"Representative X broke his promise when he elminated the Promise Scholarship!" (Cut to scene of sad young person walking away from school building)

"Representative Y took cops and firefighters off your streets!" (Cut to scene of crying children watching their house burn down)

It won't matter later that the Senate wouldn't vote to restore funding. All people will know is that Democrats didn't stand up and fight, that Democrats voted to destroy the things that people hold dear, the things that people count on to live.

At that point, why bother voting for Democrats at all?