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Dems say Brewer missing chance for bipartisan budget

Democratic legislative leaders say Republican Gov. Jan Brewer is abandoning millions of Arizonans represented by Democrats because she is choosing only to negotiate with Republican lawmakers, and the result could be a budget that is disastrous for Arizona.

“The Legislature has had six months to balance the budget and now it has come down to two weeks. It’s pathetic that Gov. Brewer and Republicans aren’t cooperating. It’s disappointing that they would be so stubborn that they would leave the state’s future hanging in the balance while they remain in a standoff,” said House Minority Leader David Lujan.

The result of Brewer working only with Republicans could be a hybrid of the proposals each side has offered. That doesn’t sit well with Democrats, Lujan said, because those budgets make deep cuts to state spending, particularly in education and social services. Such a compromise could also include a 1-cent sales tax increase, which Brewer has called for since March.

“This (possibility) represents the worst of the Governor Brewer plan and the worst of the Republican budget,” he said.

Democrats have lobbied Brewer and Republicans for months to be included in the negotiations, but thus far they have been relegated to the sidelines. Lujan said his fellow Democrats won’t support any budget proposal they don’t have a hand in crafting.

One comment

  1. Maybe I’m missing something here but it still seems that politics and party lines are more important to our government than actually serving Arizonans.

    To Mr. Lujan: Calling the Governor and the Republicans pathetic is probably not going to win you a place at the table. I know you’re desperate to have some influence but I don’t think that making a scene is going to accomplish that. I would suggest that you pick the lesser of three evils (the Governor’s budget vs the Republican budget vs the hybrid budget), hold your nose and support that. This is probably the best you can do for Arizona right now and you may be able to get enough moderate supporters to actually pass it. If not, you are still coming out on the side that’s supported by the people (according to recent polls), which could very well influence the next election. However, by just complaining that nobody likes you, you come off as a sore loser – not a popular position.

    To the Republicans: I don’t think you’re going to get your budget passed. I think it’s too heavy on ideology (whether you’re right or wrong is not the point right now) and seems to be very unpopular. You’re best bet is to swallow your pride, work with the Governor, and get something that she’ll sign.

    Now, I’m sure I’m oversimplifying things here but I’m a simple person. To me it simply looks like loyalty to the party is trumping loyalty to the people. Maybe I’m wrong (I hope I’m wrong) but that’s my impression.

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