The problems? Despite Kaine’s glowing review of the just-ended legislative session, many of his initiatives ran into a Republican wall.
The governor’s people “don’t seem to be real good at making the deals,” said House Majority Leader H. Morgan Griffith, R-Salem.
What the heck are the people at The Shad Plank smoking? Kaine and the Democrats came out on top; anyone with any brains will tell you that.
In fact, Not Larry Sabato:
House Republicans poked the VEA in the eye with a controversial attempt to rewrite funding formulas for teacher salaries. They retreated from this position without receiving any concessions. Then, after saying that the Rainy Day Fund would be off-limits, House Republicans collapsed and agreed to a large withdrawal. Finally, after calling Governor Tim Kaine’s Pre-K program dead on arrival, House Republicans caved in and agreed to over $20 million in funding.
But there are two other battles that were waged. From what I hear, House Republicans got their clock cleaned on one. Clarke Hogan won the other.
One battle was over language in the budget about dropping funding for Planned Parenthood. For the first time EVER, the House and Senate versions of the budget contained the EXACT same language. Pro-life activists rejoiced. But I now hear that when the conference report is released, the language will be missing. House Republicans took a walk on their friends at the Family Foundation and negotiated the Planned Parenthood language away.
In other words, House negotiators rolled over on Pre-K and the Rainy Day fund, infuriated teachers AND pro-lifers (no small feat), but they went to the mat on killing the uranium study for Vice Speaker Clarke.
As The right-wing liberal puts it:
Remember the battle in the Senate to take Planned Parenthood funding out of the budget (Shaun Kenney), thus ensuring neither chamber supported abortion funding? Well, the Senate Democrats demanded the House Republicans ignore the will of both chambers and put the funding back in.
And the House . . . caved
House Speaker Bill Howell’s version of “leadership” has already cost the Republicans 2/3 of the House majority they had in 2002, largely by ignoring economic conservatives time and time again. This, however, is the first time I can remember that he (through his conferees) stiff-armed the social conservatives like this.