Skubick: Hopes for budget deal dashed


Governor Gretchen Whitmer had some upbeat news today on efforts to restore some of her vetoed state service cuts.

But those hopes were dashed later in the day by one of the Republican leaders.

For the first time in months, there was some positive budget news to report on restoring service cuts through a so-called supplemental budget bill.

“We’re very close to being done negotiating a supplemental and I think that’s really positive,” said an optimistic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

That was at about 9:30 this morning and notice the key words there, “very close.” Which is not the same as finishing the deal.

While House members milled around awaiting word from the leadership on what would happen next, behind the scenes the House Republican Speaker was ready to modify some of the governor’s budget powers but not put it into writing, which she did not want to do.

But around 10:30 the Senate Republican leader was holding to his demand that she put something in writing. There was the hint this deal might not ironed out today.

For the rest of the lawmakers, they were being driven by  the special interest groups effected by her vetoes.

“There are a lot of people who need the money. The autism, rural hospitals and the sheriffs,” said Rep. Joe Bellino.

Skubick: “Are you hearing from constituents?”

Rep. Matt Maddock: “Absolutely. It’s one of the things we hear about back in the district. ¬†Some of things she cut were unexplainable and unpredictable and really make no sense.”

The governor wants to get this budget monkey off her back.

Whitmer said, “they could take action today and get something to my desk and see can put a bow on the budget and be be done with it.”

But does she trust them to do this? She claims she’s hopeful.

But within hours the governors hopes were dashed.

The Senate Republican caucus favored the restoration of the cuts, but Sen. Mike Shirkey would not budge from his demand that there be  something in writing from the governor to restrict her budget authority.

And since she won’t budge on that, the optimism this morning evaporated.

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