Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Wisconsin Democrats Advance “Edsel Agenda”

"A marketing disaster whose magnitude has made it a household word."-The Story of the Edsel by Thomas Bonsall

“Marketing disaster” is an appropriate description of the Democrats “Edsel agenda.” A lot of glitz and empty promises. Sen. Majority Leader Russ Decker is proudly driving this turkey down a road called “Missed Opportunity.”

First, what I’m not hearing in their interviews and reading in their press releases is the reason why the state legislature has to revisit the state budget: A federal economic mess created by a Republicans Congress and approved without veto threats by a Republican President. In the future, it might be wise to mention this first as a preface to any public response.

Or should we be inspired by Sen. Decker, who bravely proclaimed, "We got the votes. It's in the Assembly, so we're cool." Really? Sen. Decker’s short sighted plan was to temporarily protect SeniorCare, school aid, funding for road projects and child care subsidies. What protected programs will the Democrats throw off the cliff in the next biennium?

For some, like Sen. Judy Robson, the instinct doesn’t translate to commitment; “I firmly believe the Senate should have held out for a budget repair bill that leverages $408 million in federal Medicaid dollars. There is absolutely no reason…Wisconsin should pass up these federal dollars waiting for us. Instead of tapping into this legitimate source of funding, the budget repair bill digs deeper…Instead of putting ourselves on a sound fiscal track, we push off our budget problems for another day. I don’t believe we should have deferred to the Assembly Republicans on this point.” Well thought out and defensible, why couldn't Sen. Robson frame the debate with these same words before acquiescing to the bullies on the block?

For Republicans, the Party that can sell gay bashing, fear and health savings accounts, marketing and positioning is an art form. Republican Senator Alberta Darling has already written part of her Party’s fall campaign ad; “By not making tough spending decisions today, the state budget is set up for more shortfalls tomorrow.”

It’s time for the Democrats to drop the “Edsel agenda.” The public's not buying it.

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