Politics in the Governor’s Office? In the State Capitol? Oh, the horror of it all.
It’s not surprising that Gov. Bobby Jindal took revenge in the budget on some legislators who bucked his wishes in the just-finished legislative session. He used the line-item veto sparingly — there’s a lot more that could have been cut in a budget that needs tightening — but he targeted some cuts at appropriations of special interest to the recalcitrant lawmakers.
The “member amendments” are not always bad expenditures. But they typically are things that should be paid for by local taxpayers. It is not only the senators and representatives who benefit if they “bring home the bacon” through these political appropriations. Local officials, in their turn, take some of the credit. They are only too aware that by getting “free” money from Baton Rouge they don’t have to face their responsibility to ask voters to pony up local funds for needed local projects. The whole system stinks.