Monday, May 30, 2011

“This puts the budget in a crisis.”

I actually burst out laughing just now as I sat at my desktop PC and read this piece in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. At the very bottom of the article Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst presented his reaction to State Senator Wendy Davis’ bill-killing filibuster last night:
“Dewhurst said that he was ‘very disappointed’ and that the action could have far-reaching ramifications. ‘This puts the budget in a crisis,’ he said.”
Gee, do you think the Jr. Governor has a point?

The truth of the matter is, it has been apparent to a lot of us for a while now that the state’s budget has been in crisis mode ever since Susan Combs issued the expected budget/revenue shortfall announcement. A revenue shortfall that was denied and denied again by Rick Perry especially during the 2010 campaign season.

But now Dewhurst acknowledges what is obvious to the rest of us. The budget is in a crisis. But not because Republicans have cut taxes again and again and have failed to collect the revenue required to run the state. Not because one business after another gets to pay no taxes just so the governor can say he has attracted business to the state as a result.

Not at all.

It is in crisis now because of that State Senator from Fort Worth.

Now Perry must call the legislature into a special session. And I am left wondering whether with the super Republican majority in both the State House and Senate, Democrats will be able to get some business tax loopholes closed or get more cash out of the Rainy Day Fund.

In other words, pass a balanced budget responsibly. Passing it responsibly without doing physical harm to Texas’ system of public education.

I guess it depends on who blinks first.

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