Monday, July 14, 2014
Shadow-Juggling in Raleigh: The North Carolina Budget
Our Republican overlords have gotten the message that the entire teaching profession is madder'n hell at them, so they're now scrambling to cover their ever-widening asses with some sort of teacher pay raise. Only there's now no money for that, thanks to their sweetheart tax cuts for the already Rich&Famous.
The NC House attempts some voodoo economics and proposes to raise teacher pay 5% by fantasizing that the NC Lottery could be induced to bring in more money.
The NC Senate proposes raising teacher pay 11% by making working conditions for teachers completely dysfunctional and firing thousands of teacher assistants.
Governor Squishy takes his testicles out of the lockbox and threatens to veto the Senate budget--a pure P.R. stunt meant to make him look less than emasculated.
Following the Governor's veto threat, Phil Berger, leader of the Republican Senate, issued his own "up yours" statement, pretending to be “surprised by [McCrory’s] demand for a budget without cuts to teacher assistants and Medicaid – given that his own budget included almost $20 million in cuts to teacher assistants along with significant, though ultimately unachievable, cuts to Medicaid.”
This is now. And this was then (courtesy of BlueNC):
"We're going to go in. We're going to have a short session. It's going to be focused. It's going to be disciplined. We're going to get in and out.,"
-- House Speaker Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg, WRAL-TV 05/10/2014
“All indications point toward a session that will be short, with a continued focus on economic growth, job creation, and wise investments.”
-- Becki Gray, John Locke Foundation, 05/09/2014
“We will probably be more assertive than in our first year, which I frankly thought was extremely assertive. … “We had a heck of a good first year, but now I think we can take even more initiatives. … I anticipate that we’ll be together 80 to 90 percent of the time. “We’re having very good dialogue and, in almost all cases, good cooperation.”
-- Gov. Pat McCrory, Charlotte Observer, 05/10/2014
“Hopefully (Gov. McCrory) has learned that we have to work together to get things done. I don’t know if he’s there yet. Hopefully this session will tell us that.”
-- Senate Rules Committee Chair Tom Apodaca, R-Henderson, Charlotte Observer, 05/10/2014