I had the TV on this AM as I ate breakfast, and the early morning NBC TV news on came up with this story. While most of this is a paraphrase, the key aspects are accurate:
“Virginia Governor Tim Kaine announced he will ask the Virginia legislature for $500 million in new transportation funding. Kaine was unable to get approval of his 2006 transportation spending plans due to legislative squabbling over where the money would come from. House Republicans refused to consider any tax increase to fund the measure.”
The words that caught my attention were “squabbling” and “refused”. I don’t know whether this story makes the GOP majority GA look good by refusing to raise taxes or bad by squabbling and not offering a solution.
One thing is certain. Several weeks ago I bemoaned the lack of vision that the Virginia GOP offered. I suggested that without vision, without an idea of where the party wanted to go, and without offering legislatice specifics to back them up, the GOP faced hard times in 2007 and beyond. Stories like this underscore my concern. Until the GOP offers its own plans on how to fix the problems facing Virginia, they run the risk of being perceived as a political party that votes reflexively against tax increases while choosing not to reveal how they will meet state needs without raising taxes, choosing instead to squabble without offering soutions.