(Chuck Muth) – The first thing that comes to mind reading the first page of Nevada Democrat gubernatorial candidate Rory Reid’s just-released “Moving Nevada Forward” plan is that it’s purely a political document, not a serious proposal.
Rory starts out whining that the next governor “will face the worst budget shortfall in the nation”….thanks to Jim Gibbons and George Bush. And just a couple paragraphs later, he again bemoans “the size of the shortfall being left by Jim Gibbons.”
Rory van Winkle must have been asleep for the last two years, especially during the 2009 legislative session. Either that, or he’s being intentionally disingenuous (hmm, wonder which one it is?).
The Legislature is controlled by Rory’s fellow Democrats who proceeded to boost spending in the ’09 session by some $800 million more than the governor proposed, along with an $800 million bag of tax hikes. Gov. Gibbons vetoed the Democrats’ spending bill. The Democrats then proceeded to override Gibbons’ veto.
Sorry, Rory. Your party owns this mess, not Jim Gibbons.
It should also be noted that ever since Gibbons first raised the red flag on the lagging economy in the fall of ’07, there have been a number of special sessions of the Legislature in which the Democrat MAJORITY leaders of the Senate and the Assembly could have taken serious steps to, as Rory puts it in his plan, “Dramatically cut the size of state government while preserving the most crucial state functions and services.”
They didn’t. Instead they criticized fiscal conservatives in the Legislature for not “coming to the table” and not being willing to raise taxes to grow government. In other words, we conservatives have been right all along and Rory’s liberal colleagues have been wrong all along.
And I had to laugh when I read that Rory was going to look at the state budget “line by line” and find “ways to trim unneeded expenses and cut fat.” He’s also proposing “cutting waste and inefficiencies across state government as other states have done.”
Again, we conservatives have been calling for that for years. Welcome to the party, Johnny-come-lately.
Oh, and here’s a news flash for you: According to your fellow Democrats and fellow liberals, there is no fat in the budget. We’re down to the bone and into the marrow, they’ll tell you.
Or I should say, they’ll tell conservatives. Indeed, it’ll be interesting to watch them bite their tongues so as not to criticize their standard-bearer who is apparently was channeling former conservative state Sen. Bob Beers in his budget blueprint.
For example, Rory is proposing cutting the number of state agencies from 26 to 16 to reduce bureaucracy and cost. Sounds like Bob Beers to me.
Rory is proposing the establishment of a “Sunset Commission to review every state agency on a ten year cycle.” Sounds like Bob Beers to me.
Rory will “reduce staffing of elected officials.” Sounds like Bob Beers to me.
Rory will “cut administrative overhead by 50 percent.” Sounds like Bob Beers to me.
Rory says “it will be necessary to maintain the furlough program (for state workers) and extend the suspension of merit and longevity pay hikes.” Bob Beers.
Rory says he will eliminate “pork spending” on capital projects. Bob Beers.
Rory says that with “smarter” government “we can trim state government by a total of 10 percent.” Bob Beers.
Rory will “end state contracts that aren’t performing.” Bob Beers.
Rory will “inventory state assets and optimize their use, such as surplus land and office space.” Actually, that’s Brian Sandoval….but it could be Bob Beers, too.
Rory will save money through “better use of technology.” Bob Beers.
Rory says he’s going to “modify retirement plans for new employees.” Actually, that was Kenny Guinn, as well as the SAGE Commission….but it could be Bob Beers, too.
Rory will “reduce unneeded layers of management.” Bob Beers.
Rory will “privatize inmate medical and mental health care.” Bob Beers.
Rory will “get Nevada’s share of federal dollars that Gibbons has not pursued.” Hmmm, that one sounds more like Rory’s father. I think Bob Beers would say we should stop sending the money to Washington in the first place.
Rory declares that “we cannot tax our way out of our problems.” Bob Beers.
Rory says he will “streamline school administration and slash education bureaucracy.” Bob Beers.
Rory projects that Nevada’s revenue deficit over the next two years is going to be $1.6 billion, not $3.5 billion. That one sounds like Geoff Lawrence of the Nevada Policy Research Institute, but it could be Bob Beers, too.
In other words, Rory Reid is trying to run as a Republican. The problem is nobody believes Rory Reid actually believes any of this. And frankly, if the choice is between two Republicans, why wouldn’t voters vote for the real Republican candidate rather than the poser?
Oh, and by the way, Rory’s last name is….REID, in case you didn’t know. And two Reids don’t make a right.