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Greg-

You make a point of talking about how the FY09 budget was a Democratic budget that circumvented the will of the Republican majority as if they fought tooth and nail to stop it.

However, both you and I know the budget had the full blessing of the House and Senate Republican leadership. It had to. The President and the Speaker exclusively determine whether a bill can proceed to the floor for a vote. Had Speaker Weiers or President Bee objected to the bi-partisan budget they could have stopped it any point in the process.

Thank you concerned citizen for making Greg's point about people not knowing how the system really works, but waxing on about it as though they really do.

I was going to send this editorial to you so I'm glad to see you discussed it. If they were holding up construction of a new death row facility you know the Star would be cheering them on. The fact that they hide their actual opinion (we want the UA buildings built regardless of funding) behind a phoney process argument shows their lack of the courage of their convictions. But the editors at the Star constantly get wrong the basic elements of how a government operates. In an opinion a few weeks ago they criticized Tucson's land use code. As an reason they used an example about the City's complex building code. Now the LUC regulates zoning and building codes regulate construction but to the Star its all one big same thing. Their ignorance would be dangerous if anyone read the paper anymore.

As a marriage and family counselor, I am well aware of the complexities created as numbers are added to the family.

Your point, Greg: "With 30 members, the Arizona State Senate is rather small when compared to other legislative bodies, yet it would take 435 individual conversations for every member to discuss a topic with every other member. In the 60 member House, that number is 1,770." is well-taken.

At the same time, everyone knows that in any deliberative body, you don't need to talk to each individual. You talk to the influencers, that is, those 5 or 6 people are the respected spokespersons for their group. This is why the state legislature operates as 'efficently' as it does.

At the same time before anyone goes down there to talk to somebody about legislation, he does his power analysis.

The point so well made is that the Legislature did not pass the budget. The Democrats, with a very few minority Republicans, passed the Budget even though they knew it was not really balanced and that tricks and gimmicks ruled the day. It was "allowed" to go out of the House and Senate because there was no other solution.

You see, the other problem with the Legislature is that there are small groups who wrestle for power every hour of every day. They won't vote for what they should because they didn't get what they wanted. Or, they stick to their "principles" and let the state sink.

Leadership tries to persuade those persons to reason things out, but they won't compromise, even though failing to do so will result in total failure of what they want. It's hard to believe that any person would be so stuck on their position that they would not work to get a least a portion of it done. So much more can be accomplished in incremental steps. The people in that small group know who they are. They fail the people of the state, but claim they are sticking to their promises and would rather be damned than successful in steps.

John:

I appreciate your concern regarding my knowledge of the legislative process; however, I assure you it is up to date.

As evidence I will direct you to: 1)Senate Rule 8.A.2,which specifies the President has the sole ability to assign bills to the Committee of the Whole, "An active calendar of the Committee of the Whole on which shall be placed those bills, resolutions and memorials designated by the president..."; and 2) Senate Rule 8.A.5, which specifies the President has the sole ability to assign bills to the Senate calendar, "An active Senate calendar on which shall be placed those bills, resolutions and memorials designated by the President and drawn from the Senate Calendar for consideration by the Senate on the order of business for the day."

Thanks for playing.

CC

Thanks to the market gods that proceed in the destruction of irrelevant newspapers.

The whole "leadership allowed the bill to go to the floor ..." and "but the rules say ..." argument is disingenuous at best. It fails to take political reality into account. JNo has the news media on her side, and everyone at the capitol knows it. Had leadership *not* allowed the budget to go to the floor for a vote, the media would have been buzzing for weeks with stories about how the evil Republicans were responsible for shutting down the government. And while the media's influence is (thankfully) on the decline, especially in cetain sectors of the population, no politician is his right mind is going to take the chance of handing the opposition party such a potential PR victory in an election year.

Nice try though ...

"the Legislature did not pass the budget. The Democrats, with a very few minority Republicans, passed the Budget"

Ummm...did those Democrats and Republicans not also belong to the Legislature? 16 and 31 is a mantra at the Capitol for a reason: it doesn't MATTER how you get to those numbers -- party configuration or otherwise -- just that you get to them. Don't point the finger at the D's -- if Weiers would have been a true leader and was able to pull his caucus together the D's would have never had a ball to pick up after Weiers fumbled it.

So Dave K excuses not standing on principle because people might say bad things about you.

"So Dave K excuses not standing on principle because people might say bad things about you."

Oh give me a break! Exactly which planet are you from? If politicians were noted for standing on principle, we'd be voting for Ron Paul for President, BHO wouldn't even be in running, and there would cetainly be no discussion of JNo in *any* medium, who wouldn't know a principle if it bit her.

Politics and principle are getting closer to mutually exclusive every day, and the so-called "mainstream" media has hastened that along, with its incessant drum beat for one side of every story. One side, I might add, that isn't even representative of any mainstream outside of communist countries.

So why would any sane politician bother to attempt to publicly make a "pricipled" stand, when the only reward he would get would be to be pilloried by people *just like you*? Generally, the only time you'll see a politician take a stand on principle is when he's in a locked up tight safe district, and knows he can get away with it. If you can think of a recent exception to that, I'd love to hear it ...

I've been telling folks, politicians especially, for years that they need to ignore the clamor from an increasingly irrelevant media, and stand on their principles, no matter what they think it will cost them. Unfortunately, old habits are hard to break, and highly paid consultants tell them otherwise.

Perhaps when there is some tangible reward for doing so, they might get in the habit of doing it. But as long as these folks take a bullet every time they pop their head up over the berm, expect them to stay low.

Anything else is fantasy. And I don't do fantasy. Sorry. You want fantasy, read a book, or go to the movies.

Who cares? The budget is a tall glass of cold failure and we are headed into bankruptcy.

Can/will anyone intervene?

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