Thursday, June 2, 2011

A LIttle Perspective on Snyder's 'Accomplishments'

It's time for a little perspective on Rick Snyder and what the Michigan news media is calling his amazing accomplishments since taking office in January.

The Republican governor has several major advantages compared to his predecessor, Democrat Jennifer Granholm that explain the ease with which the budget that was just adopted.

First, Snyder has the luxury of having his own party control both houses of the Legislature, no small advantage but one that the news media rarely bothers to point out. Legislative accomplishments are easier to rack up when you are playing with people who are all on the same team. Second, many of the House members are brand new lawmakers who are much more easily led than veterans who know their way around the Capitol.

Third, Snyder had the luxury of being able to ask Republicans to do things that they like to do anyway -- cut taxes for businesses, stick it to poor people, attack public schools by slashing their budgets. This is an agenda made in heaven for Republicans, and the fact that the news media is amazed that it got done is surprising. Snyder would have had a much harder time of it had he asked Republican lawmakers to provide more funding for schools, for example, so that we really could "reinvent" Michigan. Snyder did not have to go against the Republican grain.

Fourth, Snyder benefits from an economy that is now growing and producing far more revenue than forecasters predicted even a few months ago, thanks to President Obama's restructuring of the auto industry. More than likely, people won't have to go through budget slashing year after year the way Granholm did. Of course there is a new attitude in Michigan, but that has more to do with the fact that the auto industry is making money again than with anything Snyder has done.

The fact is, Snyder rode into town just as things were getting much better in Michigan and now he wants to grab all the credit.

No comments: