Sunday, March 28, 2004

Discombolulation in Virginia

Virginia -- the only state in the Union with a servants' entrance -- has gotten itself into deep Republican doo-doo, with their Republican-dominated state Senate advocating tax hikes -- yes, I said TAX HIKES -- amounting to some $4 billion ... meeting head-on the total intransigence of the Republican House of Delegates, who are trying to hold firm to doctrine -- "No new taxes!" -- but who have nevertheless approved their own budget plan calling for some $500,000 in new taxes on -- gulp! -- corporations. The deadline for setting a budget -- March 13th -- came and went with no new budget. The new fiscal year begins July 1st, and that day could well dawn with no budget in place, shutting down state government.

Can we spell c-r-i-s-i-s?

The bemused Democrat Governor Mark Warner is trying to mediate the impass, which has only infuriated the hard right even more: " 'The Senate Republicans are such morons, because they've made Warner look like the centrist, the peacemaker,' said Stephen Moore, president of the Club for Growth, a conservative group that has vowed to finance primary campaigns against any Senate Republicans who vote for raising taxes," according to the New York Times this a.m.

Well, the governor IS more moderate: "Like the Senate Republicans, Mr. Warner proposed raising income taxes on the wealthy, as well as sales and cigarette taxes, while lowering income taxes on middle- and lower-income residents. But his plan, which would raise $1 billion in new revenues over two years, is far smaller than the Senate's."

Virginia votes in a new governor in 2005, and this side-show will not help their chances. Tra-la.

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