Thursday, November 03, 2005

 

TABOR Tumbles in Telluride Tuesday: Bad for Blackwell

Actually it tumbled throughout Colorado on Nov. 1, but we have always wanted to write that headline since we first wrote about this issue many months ago.

Anyway, the citizens of Colorado gave a nice little "f-you" to the conservatives and their nasty TABOR amendments on their election day, shelving for five years the measure that has suffocated the state for a decade. Voters, as we understand it, also permanently repealed the component of TABOR that permanently "racheted" downward government spending, effectively preventing the restoration of programs and services after a recession had passed.

TABOR was a nightmare for the state. Once one of the greatest economic engines in the West, Colorado has gone through a painful 12-year period in which revenues dried up that were needed for things like basic state infrastructure, schools and health care. The state's Republican governor evolved into one of the most vocal opponents of TABOR

As Nathan Newman points out, one big loser is Grover Norquist. Sure, it's a setback, but he is pushing similar measures in dozens of states and is gambling that one of the will pay off.

But, from our perspective, the biggest loser actually is Kenny Blackwell who was staking much of his gubernatorial effort to a similar TABOR measure in Ohio - something he vowed to put on the ballot in 2006. As much as Blackwell's spokesman tries to polish this turd, the Colorado defeat means the bottom just fell out of his Ohio TABOR effort.

Not surprisingly, there is nary a word about the Colorado vote on Blackwell's campaign website.

We aren't convinced that the stalwarts of his own party want TABOR in Ohio, and many GOP moderates were already pissed off that Blackwell was creating a wedge issue in his own party at one of its weakest moments in the past two decades. We've got to believe that Bob Bennett must must have been yukking it up with his pals at Kenny's expense all day yesterday.

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