Monday, August 27, 2007

Line Item Veto and other

Governor Blagojevich used his line item veto last week to cut about half billion dollars from the Illinois State budget last week, normally I am all for cutting spending and pork, but that not what the Governor was doing, he was cutting this money with the intention of using to fund his health care program that the State General Assembly refused to pass. The Governor is attempting to do an end run around the elected representive of the people and use these cuts to fund a program that they would not pass, this shows how little respect Governor Blagojevich has for the state, its people, their representatives and its institutions, there is a reason that the budget making process is not entrusted to one man but instead negoiatated between the legislative and the Executive. Think of the reaction if President Bush tried to do the same thing. Hopefully enough of the Senate Democrats will see the light and join with there Republican counterparts and work with the House were both Democrats and Republicans seem willing to over turn the veto. If not Speaker of the House Mike Madigan has made it quiet clear that he intends to challenge the Governors ability to use the funds from the veto programs in court.

On the National side, Alberto Gonzales resigned today as United State Attorney General, not matter what you think of his policies or the Bush Administration, the way that Alberto Gonzales handled the events that happened around him showed poor judgment and it is probably best for everyone that he is gone.

Monday, August 6, 2007

The Governor loses more backers

Governor Blagojevich’s antics during the budget debates have gotten so bad that even his long time backers in the AFL-CIO no longer consider him to be trust worthy, they have gotten behind a proposal that would cut the Governor out of the decision on how school funding is distributed, instead putting it in a lock box that would be a controlled by a 3/5 super majority vote in both Houses of the State Assembly. On a similar note if there is no new budget or temporary budget that means that schools districts in Illinois will not be getting there share of state funds on time which could put a number of them in a bad position, particularly in counties like Tazewell were the county treasures has no intentions to distribute property tax revenues until September and even then he will make a only a 45% distribution at first.

This just goes to show how much the Governor’s leadership has failed that even the Unions no longer trust him. He has consistently failed to recognize the reality of his political position and give up on programs and taxes that there is little or no support for or to work with three of the four leaders of the State Houses. The only question now is how much longer can he count on the support of State Senate President Emil Jones? For this year what we need is a zero growth budget and then for next year the public needs to push it representatives in the State House and Senate to start the new budget from scratch with a zero-bases budgeting system.