Sharpening our wits on the grindstone of Life: Politics as usual .comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Sharpening our wits on the grindstone of Life

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Politics as usual

Analysis: Unkept vows keep Robin Hood alive

Doncha just love it. The Texas GOP has the governor's mansion, the lieutenant governor, the Speaker of the House, and a majority in the House and Senate, yet they still can't seem to pass legislature that they promised to pass during their campaigns.

Most of the Republican candidates who won election back in 2002 won their seats promising either the repeal of the "Robin Hood" method of school finance, property tax cuts, or no new taxes.

Yet their proposed legislation included new taxes. Some for businesses (opposed by Repubicans) and most for the poor (opposed by Democrats). It also included tax cuts for homeowners (proposed by Democrats) that favored those with lower valued homes, and didn't benefit major contributors with high dollar first and second (and sometimes third) homes.

Gubna Rick Perry has tried to push legislation through, also because of campaign promises and his upcoming re-election bid, with his three special sessions called, and his claim that he will sign nothing into law until he has passed a comprehensive education and school finance reform bill. But the legislature has all but given up on passing a bill, so it's up to gubna Rick to sign or not sign:

  • The telecommunications bill, which will give SBC (Southwestern Bell Corporation) the ability to obtain a state frachise, bypassing all community franchise authorities and allowing them to provide video services only to the residents they choose.
  • The judicial pay raise, which will raise the pay of the state judiciary, but at the same time increase the pensions of the legislators who are voting on the bill.
  • The eminent domain bill, which will limit how the government can condemn properties for economic purposes, although there is some controversy as to how sports authorities and colleges can claim private homeowner's land for economic development.
Gubna Rick has vowed not to sign any of these bills into law until education reform has been resolved, although we all know how those vows live and die at the whim of their creators.

What's it gonna be, Rick? Do you live up to your promises? Or do you bow to political expediency and cave to the Powers That Be?

I have a feeling that question will be answered soon. And that answer will be a major factor in his re-election bid in 2006.


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