After months of futile floundering — much of it in unnecessary overtime costing taxpayers $35,000 a day — Republicans who control the Legislature finally passed a poverty-level budget that will hurt West Virginia. They refused to raise revenue and instead slashed education and other vital services.
Gov. Jim Justice is in a trap. He detests this worthless budget, but if he vetoes it, the state government may be forced to shut down when the new fiscal year starts July 1.
“This is an immoral budget,” Delegate Larry Rowe, D-Kanawha, said. “It’s being balanced on the backs of young people.”
Delegate Mike Pushkin, D-Kanawha, called it the result of “complete and utter dysfunction.”
Sen. Richard Ojeda, D-Logan, added: “I guess the pathway to prosperity has been pretty much shot down.”
Sen. Mike Romano, D-Harrison, said: “I predict we’ll be back here in January facing dire circumstances. I’m afraid it might be insurmountable.”
What a sorry mess from GOP rule.
Meanwhile, in Washington, Republicans are struggling to take medical care away from 20 million Americans — just to lower taxes for the rich. They also want to slash several other people-helping programs, for the same reason.
In Kansas, Republicans under Gov. Sam Brownback bankrupted their state, and finally were forced to boost taxes again.
In Oklahoma, similar GOP cutbacks caused public school systems to operate just four days a week.
It seems that when Republicans are in control the people suffer.
The great newspaperman H.L. Mencken saw U.S. politics as a comical circus — entertainment for “connoisseurs of the obscene.” He would have laughed uproariously at the Trump administration.
But government isn’t comedy. It affects everyone and can help or hurt millions of families and lives. Government policies have grim effects.
The GOP fiasco under the golden Capitol dome has damaged West Virginia.