The Open Hand
Tuesday, March 07, 2006 :::
More reaction from the Governor and sundry Democratic operatives regarding l'affaire LeBlanc,
First, the Governor has some pointed words for the House (watch the video too, it's great). I liked this bit:
The governor spoke before the full House vote but was clear his administration would react if LeBlanc was rejected. Kaine says, "?When I have that open hand extended and they reject it, I don't think they're going to like the outcome, and I think they'll come to regret it."
"I think they'll come to regret it." Hmmm.
Meanwhile, DPVA flack Kevin Griffis was having a few quotable moments, too:
"What'?s clear is that House Republicans are their own worst enemies," said Democratic Party of Virginia spokesman Kevin Griffis. "?In 2004, they sided against progress by opposing budget reform, and they handed Tim Kaine his most effective campaign issue. We'?re going to remind Virginians about this vote in 2007. It symbolizes just how far Republicans will go in the name of senseless partisanship."
This, from a press release, is followed by assorted quotes showing how, in the past, even the most evil Republican nominees were given the benefit of the doubt by Democrats.
I still maintain that even a month from now, no one will recall much of this episode and it will have degraded almost to nothingness come 2007.
But in the near term, this will spill over onto the transportation tax battle. But contrary to some, I tend to believe that these most recent remarks may, if anything harden the House's resolve to stick by its plan, regardless of the campaign Kaine is prepared to wage if they fail to bend to his wishes.
Kaine says the House will regret their decision today. What does he mean by that, exactly? Is it a personal threat? Or is it some nebulous warning about the future wrath of the voters?
But I look at the situation this way: from almost the beginning of his term, Kaine has derided the House for its unwillingness to accept his transportation plan. He has cultivated business "leaders" to lobby the House to support some sort of plan that calls for higher taxes. He is prepared an offensive against almost half the House GOP Caucus if they refuse to go along with a plan to hike taxes. Now, he issues a threat.
You can hit a dog over the nose only so many times before it bites back. The House gave Kaine a nip today. But if he continues to push them, they may take their own ounce of flesh from his backside.
Will it make for good copy? Oh yes.
::: posted by Norman Leahy at 3/07/2006