Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist
Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Md Troopers Assoc #20 & Westminster Md Fire Dept Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Sunday, January 23, 2005

20050121 Baltimore Sun: Democrats see budget retaliation

General Assembly: Democrats see budget retaliation

Some cuts in the governor's spending plan may be punishment for special-session votes, leaders of the majority party say.

By David Nitkin, Andrew A. Green and Ivan Penn, Sun Staff

January 21, 2005

Launching a review of the governor's budget proposal with eyes that may be jaundiced by recent battles, Democrats in the General Assembly say they see signs of retaliation in the $25.9 billion spending plan released this week.

Lawmakers are wondering aloud whether Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. is trying to punish them for votes cast during last week's special session by eliminating programs that they favor, withholding money from jurisdictions where leaders live and abolishing patronage long enjoyed by legislators.


Maryland governors have long used their budgetary authority - considered by experts to be the strongest in the nation - to reward friends and punish enemies. Ehrlich's predecessor, Gov. Parris N. Glendening, was considered a master at using the tool to maximum advantage.

"I'm certain that some members are feeling the power of the executive, as many of us [Republicans] did under Glendening," said Sen. David R. Brinkley of Frederick County. "The sword cuts both ways."

It is not clear whether the proposals are intended to inflict real harm or are more a negotiating tool that could soon disappear through compromises. Ehrlich can ill afford to alienate the Assembly, where Democrats hold veto-proof majorities in both chambers, if he hopes to secure passage of his slot-machine plan or other priorities.

Others say Democrats are being too sensitive, and deny that Ehrlich is trying to punish the opposing party. "They are looking at the bogeyman that doesn't exist. Or to put another way, maybe they are running a little scared and overreacting," said Del. Anthony J. O'Donnell, the House minority whip, whose Southern Maryland district includes parts of Calvert County.


Read the rest here: Democrats see budget retaliation

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.