Monday, February 27, 2006

TABOR dies

TABOR written off for session:
Several months ago, TABOR, the so-called Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, was riding high in the political winds.

Rep. Brenda Landwehr, R-Wichita, a TABOR leader, took a 23-city bus tour along with other supporters in September to get the message out.

While there were some protesters, the overwhelming majority of people who heard what TABOR was supported it, she said.

But on Friday, House Speaker Doug Mays, R-Topeka, a co-sponsor of the measure, said the issue was essentially dead for the 2006 legislative session.

“We certainly heard from the public sector and the private sector, too,” Mays said. “There was considerable amount of rejection of TABOR to the point that I’m not picking up much appetite among House members, Republican or Democrat, to talk about the bill this year.”
TABOR is bad news, and a stupid idea that would guarantee bad and inflexible government down the line. It would be a constitutional amendment forbidding spending increases faster than inflation and population growth, preventing the government from making any investment in the future, like funding to attract new industry or to head off the impending depletion of the Ogllala aquifer, never mind a court ruling finding that education spending isn't adequate.

This doesn't mean the battle is over, there are TABOR-lite proposals that wouldn't need a 2/3 majority to pass, but it takes a ballot initiative out of play for the primaries or the midterms, which was part of the goal.