August 12, 2010

The Gang that Can’t Shoot Straight

At a certain point in politics, one has to ask if they are being simply too hard on those in power. That point comes today for this blog.

We’ve often criticized the Assembly Majority, of which our own Francine DelMonte is a part, for what we’ve often seen as evidence of either outright corruption, or, at the very least, a callous disregard for the realities facing ordinary, tax-paying New Yorkers. Today, though, we think it’s entirely possible we’ve got it all wrong, and that the only sin of the Assembly Majority is that they are simply incompetent.

What, you ask, has pointed us to this conclusion? It seems that, after the Democrat-controlled New York State Legislature rammed through a tax-hiking, free-spending budget, Gov. David A. Paterson*
signed the wrong budget, putting this year’s dismal performance by Albany on track to produce the actual, honest-to-God, latest budget in the history of a state with lots of late budgets.

No, really. He signed the wrong budget. As in, a document that the Assembly never actually passed.

Now, we realize some of our readers out there have reached the inescapable conclusion that this may have something to do with Gov. Paterson’s, er, um, ocular condition. But, no, it’s
actually not his fault.

It seems that the responsibility of the Assembly—where budget bills must, constitutionally, originate—is to send the final, approved budget to the Governor for his signature. This would seem a simple enough task—rather straightforward, the kind of thing that a third-grader with some hall monitor experience could handle. I mean, you just take the bill that passed, you pick it up, and you walk it downstairs to the second floor, where the Governor’s office is. Pretty simple—at least for legislative aides who aren’t functionally illiterate.

But that kind of excludes the New York State Assembly’s Majority Democrats. Somehow, these geniuses took a different budget bill, one that never actually formally passed the Assembly, to the Governor, and had him sign it. Which, as anyone who ever saw the old Schoolhouse Rock “How a Bill Becomes a Law” video knows, is an entirely meaningless act with no legal standing.

No, we now know we’ve been too hard on Francine DelMonte’s Assembly colleagues. They’re not evil. They’re just illiterate morons.

Which, of course, is no more comforting a thought when you realize these people have the power to control virtually every aspect of life here in New York State.

* Soon to be reduced to a footnote in political history.

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