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In and outs of the political campaigns, focusing on Michigan and Lansing, Tim Skubick will report regularly throughout the primary and then general election campaigns.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Logic Trumps Politics: Ha

Lt. Governor Brian Calley gave a very measured, reasonable and
logical presentation the other day on why the House Appropriations
Committee should support the governor's new budget including that
sticky senior pension tax.
Calley is so low-keyed and non-confrontational, just like his
boss, that they could have served some no-doze to the panel.
Give the administration credit, it has pieced together a budget
that makes some sense when you compare seniors on a pension paying no
taxes while seniors who are still working, do.
But even the Republicans on the committee had a little trouble
swallowing that. None of them criticized the budget per se, but when
six of them were asked if they would support the pension tax if they
had to vote today, each one punted.
"I don't have to vote today," was the common dodge.
"I'm asking a lot of questions," deflected another R.
"Everything is still on the table," was yet another way to
wiggle out of a direct answer.
Democrats are more direct: They'll have none of it. Period.
Calley and the governor know this is a tough sell.
"There are always political consequences to charges and there's
naturally an amount of trepidation to that," Mr. Calley concedes.
But he and the governor keep saying it is time to do the right
thing…as they see it.
Easy for the two of them who have risen about the politics that
dominates this town. Let's just say a majority of legislators have not
made the climb to join them.
In fact the senate GOP leader confesses, "I don't think our
caucus is supportive of it as presented." There might be a middle
ground Sen. Randy Richardville hints, but adds, "I don't necessarily
know if that's going to happen."
Undaunted, Calley plods along hoping against hope for a
cultural change where logic prevails.
"Getting logic to take a higher priority over the political
ramifications of doing the right thing is difficult under all
circumstances, but especially now."
At least they've got that right.


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