Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Beebe Setting Up Giant Tax Increase

Now that the fiscal session is over Gov. Mike Beebe has made a terrible discovery.    It appears that Medicaid will face a shortfall in the next two years that could run as high as $400 million dollars.    Either services will have to be slashed, or spending on the program increased.  And of course, not many people want to cut very deeply into medical care for the poor. 

Well, can we really blame the Governor for failing to see this one coming?  No we can't.  And for a very good reason.   He didn't fail to see it coming.  He knew it was coming.  A lot of people at the capitol knew it was coming.  Heck, even I knew it was coming.   What we can blame him for is deliberately refusing to act on that knowledge.     He waited until the budget session was over by a month or two, and only then do his people formally fess up to the legislature.  He has always treated the legislature as if they were mushrooms.

This leads naturally to the question of motivation.  Why would he do such a thing?   Of course anything I write about that would be judging the intent of another man's heart, and who can know such a thing?  Not I.  Unless its Mike Beebe.   I have endured enough of the man to get how he operates.   He is in an early phase of doing exactly what I told you he was going to do in February.

You may recall that Republican John Burris introduced his own version of a budget that spent $21 million less than the Governor's plan during the just concluded special session.   The Governor assured us that he would be forced to make draconian cuts if this dastardly plan to spend less money than he wanted to spend went through. 

Folks, if he can't stand to cut $21 million then he is not about to cut $400 million.   He is setting us up for a large tax increase.   He deliberately resisted cuts two months ago because he wants a budgetary crisis so big that we have no choice other than to raise taxes or watch poor people die for want of medical care.     If we had started cutting five months ago for this extremely foreseeable need then we would not face such a dramatic shortfall next year.

Here is how I put it three months ago....
"The pattern repeats itself. Big spending politicians set us up for another tax increase by hiding behind sick children instead of altering fiscal course while there is still time."
 If the Governor had really wanted to save us from a tax increase in the midst of a near-depression, then he would have gone with Rep. Burris' plan to cut spending, and come up with some spending cuts of his own besides.   He knew this shortfall was coming.  Lots of people knew.   He deliberately choose to wait until after the fiscal session ended in March to formally announce it.   The reason?  He wants it to be paid for with new taxes, not reduced spending.

I know he gets extreme cover from the Democrat-Gazette, but the guy is not that hard to predict.  Hey other team, have your own plan ready using budgets cuts- taken mostly out of his political hide.    He's earned it.

2 Comments:

Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Figuring out Mike Beebe's tactics is not rocket surgery folks. For example, his recent comments on Medicare budgets......I know where he is going with this one...

8:09 PM, May 01, 2012  
Blogger Ronomundo said...

We will not stand for this scheme so get ready to take $500 million out of his back side. There is plenty to cut.

The State of Kansas has close to the same population as Arkansas does but Arkansas has 20,000 more employees to service about the same population.

One clue to see where a lot of the extra spending is to make an itemized comparison with the State of Kansas. They are not all that frugal so what does that make us?

12:36 AM, May 02, 2012  

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