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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.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Bipartisanship..Not This Time

   Yes, it was a cultural shift to see this new governor and a brand new bunch of lawmakers do something that others have failed to do in decades.  The passage of the new budget, four months before the October 1st deadline is something to boost about.
      "It was a team effort" Gov. Rick Snyder told reporters while refusing  to single himself out for praise.
      But turns out there were only Republicans on the "team."
     So where were the Democrats?
     Didn't this more moderate GOP governor say he wanted to reinvent Michigan with bi-partisan suppport?
     Well on the budget and the center piece of his turnaround plan, a new business/pension tax, the governor gets a fat zero.  Nary a Democrat offered a yes vote on either...not a one.
     It's not that Mr. Snyder didn't compromise and it's not that the D's didn't get something.  He did and they did.
     The school aid cut started at $470 a student and ended at $100 but with strings attached.  The Democrats were not impressed.
     The governor wanted to eliminate the Earned Income Tax Credit for needy families on the cusp of making it into the middle class. Democrats wanted to preserve the program and they did, although the gov reduced the grant.
     The governor also modified the pension tax but he did that to get GOP votes as Democrats would have no part of that, either.
     Let's face it.  There is a reason why the governor has an R after his name the Democrats a D.  They view government, spending, and priorities through a different prism and that is reflected in this budget.
     "I still want to work with the Democrats" the governor confided in his office after the news conference putting the budget to bed.  And the Democrats, now that the budget is out of the way, say they want to work with him, too.
      They'll get a chance real soon on building a new bridge between Detroit and Windsor.
      This'll be fun to watch in that the governor's biggest challenge is lining up his own party to play along with the more than eager Democrats.
      He'll need bipartisanship or the bridge remains on the drawing board.


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