Wake Dems Weekly Update: Now it's the House's turn

WAKE DEMS WEEKLY UPDATE, Vol. 1, No. 7

May 26, 2017

 

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!

Please join us in remembering those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

HOUSE BUDGET

On Thursday morning, House leadership began trickling out sections of their budget proposal to the various Appropriations subcommittees. Democrats, of course, had only the information put before them as they got to committee, no different than the rest of the public. Within a few hours, members were expected to have amendments prepared and then to vote to approve their section of the budget. If you’ve been following the Republican modus operandithe last six years, you’re probably having a strong sense of deja vu.

The full House budget will not be available until next Tuesday, including their teacher pay plan, and then final votes are expected Thursday night into Friday morning, giving the public scant more time for digestion and input than the Senate provided. Yet again, Republicans are falling back on their old tactics of avoiding the voices of their constituents and keeping the budget under wraps.

And there are already signs that this budget will be no better than the Senate’s version. Luckily, the governor’s office has prepared a helpful chartcomparing the governor’s budget proposal to the budget passed by the Senate two weeks ago to what is known about the House budget so far. Both the House and Senate have agreed to spend the same amount of money, which is short of the governor’s proposed investments while also giving massive tax cuts to the wealthy, leaving the rest of us grasping for the scraps.

SOME GOOD NEWS TO END THE WEEK

This week, the United States Supreme Court struck down the 2011 versions of the 1st and 12th Congressional Districts, ruling that they were unconstitutional racial gerrymanders. This upheld a lower federal court’s ruling last year, which forced the General Assembly to redraw the lines for the 2016 elections. Therefore, those lines were not impacted by this ruling. But the ruling does establish precedent for race being a proxy for party, which bodes well for another case challenging our 2011 legislative districts (which are still in effect). In that case, justices will likely rule the same way, so the General Assembly will probably have to redraw those lines before the 2018 elections.

COMING NEXT WEEK

We will have more news on what will then be the final House budget in the next edition.