Saturday, February 24, 2007

Why Was the Voucher Bill Modified via HB 174?

In discussing a recent vote on HB174, which modifies the voucher bill from this session(the ink is hardly dry on the Governor's signature on that bill), Representative Urquart raises the question of why 5 Democrats voted against this bill, which contained additional items that the Democrats had used as arguments to vote against the orginal voucher bill. Why would they now vote against the things they had previously argued for? It's a valid question and probably deserves an answer, although I suppose that there are several reasons why a legislator might vote for or against a bill.

However, the question could also be asked of those that pushed the voucher bill through--why weren't the items in HB174 in the original voucher bill? They passed overwhelmingly now as part of HB174. The story of the camel who tries to get into the tent of his master by first trying to get his nose in the tent comes to mind. Once accomplishing that,the camel gradually gets further and further into the tent until there is no more room for his master, the camel is completely in the tent and the master is out in the cold. Senator Bramble admitted as much at a recent Republican Central Committee meeting. This is the first shot and now, having gotten their nose in the tent, the Legislature will attempt to add more and more to the voucher program every year.

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