Thursday, October 01, 2009

Summary of the State Budget Meltdown

Didn't have time to get these over here last night. Here they are, in chronological order, with time posted at BFM, and my comments in the aftermath this morning in blue.


The Bishop-Dillon "deal" went down in flames as the Legislature could not pass their budgets. K-12 and revenue sharing failed in the House, State Police failed in the Senate, and time ran out.

Senate Democrats, as they had indicated they would do for weeks, stood strong and withheld immediate effect on the Higher Ed budget that contained the Promise Scholarships. 10:28 PM.


"Immediate Effect Fails on Higher Ed/Promise Scholarship Budget"

YEAH! From a tweet:

MISenDems Immediate effect fails on Higher Ed. budget that slashes Promise scholarships

Love those Senate Dems!

Wonder what else they have up their sleeve....

The House is still "at ease" right now.

Here's Deb Cherry talking about her "no" vote on the Higher Ed budget earlier today.


This caused Mike Bishop to blow a fuse as he saw the whole thing slipping away. Even though Matt Marsden had promised to get a continuation to the governor by midnight earlier in the day, Bishop decided that he would shut down the government instead. 11:07 PM.


"Senator Bishop 'All But Vowed' Not to Pass Continuation Budget, Republicans Will Own Shut Down"

This is breaking from Gongwer:

State budget worked veered toward collapse and a shutdown of government at midnight as a handful of significant budgets remained unfinished in the Legislature, Senate Democrats rejected immediate effect on some budgets and Senate Republicans refused to complete action on a continuation budget.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop (R-Rochester) and Senate Minority Leader Mike Prusi (D-Ishpeming) just took turns trashing the other to reporters. Mr. Bishop all but vowed not to pass a continuation budget, accusing Governor Jennifer Granholm of having a “death grip” on Senate Democrats, and the budget is too close to approval to use the continuation measure.

The Senate Democrats have been warning about this for weeks. For Bishop to blame the govenor at this point is absurd.

If the Senate Republicans will not pass their own continuation budget, they will own the shut down. It really is that simple.

The mother of all hissy fits just might happen tonight.

UPDATE: AP story up now, Bishop trying to blame Democrats for shut down because budget is "almost complete". K-12 is getting shot down at this moment in the House, for the second time today. So, the budget is not "almost complete".

Senator Whitmer explains why Mike Bishop owns this shut down moments ago from the halls of the Capitol. Technology is a wunnerful thing.


K-12 failed in the House just before midnight. The Senate adjourned with the stated intent on coming back to session at a quarter after midnight. They shut down the government on purpose. 12:01 AM.


"Senate Republicans Shut Down Government"

WOOD reporting now: The Senate has adjourned until 12:15, Oct 1st.

The Senate Republicans have shut down the state government out of spite.


AP story says it all.

"The continuation budget was there as a safety valve in case we didn't finish," said Republican Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop of Rochester. Having one in place would only give Granholm "30 more days to pressure the Legislature to adopt something she wants."

Granholm spokeswoman Liz Boyd disagreed, saying Bishop and Democratic House Speaker Andy Dillon of Wayne County's Redford Township failed to get the votes to pass a budget deal that included deep cuts and no new revenue.

"They're unable to get approval on budgets based on agreements they agreed to — not us," Boyd said. "The prudent thing to do, the responsible thing to do, would be to put that continuation budget on the governor's desk so that we can operate government."

The safety valve was there. The Legislature "didn't finish". And Bishop chose not to use the safety valve.

The Senate Republicans own this shutdown, but we will give a dishonorable mention to the House that promised us this budget would be done by now as well.

Congratulations, Legislature. You blew it.


They came back on session, and passed the continuation budget, but withheld immediate effect, apparently to coerce votes on their "all cuts" budget. The House passed the revenue sharing cuts, the Senate passed the State Police budget. 12:53 AM.


"Senate Passes Continuation Budget"

Tweet from Mitch Rivard, he of the awesome MSU Dems.

mitchellrivard Republicans in Senate pass continuation budget; on the way to the Governor now

Bishop shut down the government out of spite alone - and the Freep is already reporting that the Senate Republicans are responsible for this action.

The Republican-controlled Senate held final action on an interim budget until after the midnight deadline, over objections from Gov. Jennifer Granholm, who accused them of shirking their responsibility to keep state government from shutting down.

The Senate adjourned until 12:15 a.m., when it was presumed negotiations would continue between the House, Senate and Granholm.

Less than an hour earlier, Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop, R-Rochester, accused Granholm and Senate Democrats of sabotaging progress on a final budget agreement, although key budget bills remained stalled in the Democratic controlled House.

The truth does come out. Eventually.


The Senate then went on to make drastic cuts to the school aid continuation budget (there are two separate continuation budgets here) after the House had adjourned for the night.