For awhile, a handful of legislators have been critical of the Governor for not offering her own plan. Well, they might finally get their wish - to see a full-fledged budget proposal. It sounds like there is a plan in the works, and if it is launched, there would be an effort to support it.
The conservative blogs, who were conspicuously quiet on the GOP budget, have become ablaze with reactions to the news that a legislative lobbying effort may be planned. Here is the run down for your reading enjoyment:
Sonoran Alliance - Sonoran Alliance Awaits GOP Denouncement of $225K Tax Hike Campaign, Long (and dull) Knives Distract From Real Story, Governor Brewer Shills To Launch $225K Media Blitz
Gila Courier - Is the Gov going after Republicans?, More on operation “Building a Better Arizona”, Update On Governor’s New Plan Of Attack
Seeing Red AZ - Gov. Brewer: End-running the reluctant legislature
Noble Thinking - AZ GOP Gov. Brewer and Team Launch Campaign Against Republican Legislators
The vitriol has reached fever pitch, with people pointing to California as a model (which is generally considered a bad idea) and the war over the management of the AZGOP is once again called into question. The anti-tax arguments are in full effect, but for all of the hype, there has been no support and no movement for an alternate budget approach. What is the Governor (who has to be elected statewide) and legislators in swing districts to do?
We have been saying for awhile now that drawn out budget talks could impact the GOP's ability to retain power in both bodies of the legislature. It was an issue that we visited once again when the GOP released their budget. If you notice, besides Paton, the people who represent these critical districts are not the ones speaking out against this plan.
Does that mean that they support this effort? Are they too afraid to speak their mind one way or another? What is more likely - an effort to criticize legislators into support or one to provide the cover they would need to support? If you were running for re-election next year, would you like the dramatic budget cuts to health care and education on your head?
Even more to the point, if something had been done by now, would this effort even be considered? Would the Governor welcome this type of support if her talks with the legislature had been at fruitful? Does this drive an even bigger wedge between the groups or does it finally force everyone to the table? One thing is for certain, the volume on the budget discussions has just been cranked up.