From the monthly archives: May 2013

I’m sorry, I just cannot get over the sheer stupidity of the Kasich Administration and most of the Republicans in the General Assembly over this RobsOhio public audit ban.  I mean, first of all, the media has not adequately pointed out that it is the first time in Ohio history the legislature intervened to terminate what was already an ongoing public audit.

But every time I hear the Administration and its supporters justify this, I try to bang my head against the wall until it makes sense.  That hasn’t worked, so I’m trying copious amounts of bourbon now.  This graf [...]

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Somehow, I’m going to miss Michele Bachmann.  It has taken me so long to remember whether she spelled her name with one “l” or two, as in Obama and Pfeiffer.  (I didn’t always succeed in print!)

For the lifespan of my  Grumpy Abe and Plunderbund posts , she  provided bizarre “content” when everything else seemed to be on the serious side while Sarah Palin, Louie Gohmert  and Rand Paul were taking the day off.  You may recall that it was Gohmert, the wacko Republican representative from Texas who advanced the notion that immigrant women bear children  on American soil so  that the [...]

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 Less than twenty-four hours after a House committee attached an amendment to prevent the State Auditor’s Office from completing its audit of JobsOhio and rushed it to a floor vote to pass it in the House, this morning the State Senate held a concurrance vote to accept the House changes.  On an up and down vote on whether to accept SB 67 with the RobsOhio provision excepting it from decades of case law and statues that clearly stated such an entity would be subject to public audits by the Ohio Auditor’s Office, the Senate passed SB 67 by a 22-10 [...]

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The Cincinnati Enquirer, which has never endorsed a Democrat for President or Governor, published a scathing editorial that slammed City Council’s budget for a structural imbalance, which will result in a 2015 deficit of $8 million.

That budget passed the key committee today, and will soon be passed.

Also passing out of committee today is the Ohio budget. This budget will carve another $628 million from local governments. It’s reasonable to expect a 2015 reduction in payment to Cincinnati in the neighborhood of $22 million, which is the reduction this year.

The Enquirer hasn’t mentioned that cut [...]

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I challenge our readers and anyone in the media to cite me one example in Ohio history prior to RobsOhio in which the legislature acted to stop a pending audit by the State Auditor or any pending investigation of the Executive Branch by removing from that office its jurisdiction to conduct such an investigation.

I can’t think of any, nor could I find an example in my research.  And yet, that’s what the Ohio House of Representatives did today.  They passed a bill that would prevent the State Auditor, a fellow Republican, from completing and release a public report of [...]

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An amendment that declared that the profits JobsOhio (aka RobsOhio) received state liquor sales is exempt from auditing by the State Auditor was quietly attached to a largely unrelated measure in a House committee today.  Not only did the amendment coincidentially favor what Governor Kasich’s Administration wanted, but the House committee (in which Democrats, at least, had no notice of such an amendment) just happen to have some show up to testify in favor of the amendment.  This just a few days after House Democrats introduced the JobsOhio Accountability Act, which the Administration dismissed by calling JobsOhio the [...]

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The Republicans in the Ohio Legislature care more about ideology above the Constitution.

That is the only conclusion we can draw from the decision to continue to defund Planned Parenthood in the latest budget proposal.

As BudgetWatcher highlighted about a year ago, the idea is to “re-prioritize” state family planning and other services in such a way that Planned Parenthood would no receive any funding.

As we noted back last February, this law is unconstitutional.  The gist of the argument is that a state plan to reallocate federal family planning in a way that leaves little [...]

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There comes a time in which you can sit on the sidelines in your self-imposed retirement and watch so much derp being passed off as policy by the Ohio Republican Party before you just cannot take it anymore.  Specifically, the Senate GOP unveiled that their version of the State budget will remove the across-the-board 7% income tax cut passed by the House and replace it with what Governor Kasich’s called a 50% tax cut for “small businesses.”

Here’s why of all the tax cuts ever proposed by Republicans this is, well, the derpiest tax cut of all time.

1)  [...]

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The Ohio Senate has swapped out the high-end income tax cut in favor of the 50% tax deduction for small business investors. This plan lets $2.8 billion flee the state without being taxed.

Here’s how it works: for the first $750,000 in income for the owners of a Pass-Through Entity, half of that income can be deducted from the amount subject to state income tax.

Who are the owners of Pass-Through Entities? Small businesses, sole proprietorships, law firm partners, medical practices, and venture capitalists.

Venture capitalists are key, because they have ownership stakes in lots of PTEs. Whereas [...]

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During a recent visit to  Summit Mall,  the sprawling retail center in Fairlawn, I heard a small boy shriek as he looked up in awe to a store window featuring several headless manikins:

“They don’t got no heads!!!”

No heads, indeed.

You could only wonder how he might have reacted during a visit to the Republican-controlled Ohio legislature where a lot of denizens (hardly fashion humanikins) strut around ceremoniously every day with nothing attached to their necks. Reinforcing their  party’s bizarre higher echelon on Capitol Hill, the Buckeye version of rusticated politics is seriously dedicated to subverting the GOP’s stage persona [...]

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Either that, or he’s dumber than Jan Brewer.

Brewer, the far-right governor of Arizona, is vetoing everything that the legislature sends her until they expand Medicaid.

Expanding Medicaid is good policy and good politics. It gives health insurance to working families, saves the state money,reduces net public spending, and brings billions of dollars into the state.

Governors who don’t expand Medicaid will have a hard time getting reelected as the entire health care sector supports their opponent and uninsured voters are a lock to vote against them. (Think that’s a tough GOTV? “Vote FitzGerald and you get free [...]

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