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When government shuts down


Fri, Jul 8th, 2005
Posted in Commentary

There’s enough blame to go around in St. Paul. The inability for the governor and the legislature to get the job done and keep Minnesota running is a shameful lesson in how party politics has seized state government.

Somewhere between Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty’s pledge to the Taxpayer’s League to keep a lid on taxes and Senate Democrats’ vow to keep Minnesota Care in tact for the poor, is a $6 million budget problem that no one knows what to do about.

Regardless of how this impasse gets resolved, anytime the legislature ends without passing a budget bill, there ought to be an automatic recall of legislators - say, elections in 90 days, with a continuing resolution to keep government spending at previous levels.

The inability for the legislature to pass a budget bill is essentially a no confidence vote on the governor, as well as the leadership in the house and senate.

If a government shut down occurs, it should result in the mass firing of all legislators. That would remind them that they serve at the mercy of Minnesota citizens.

Justice Sandra Day O’Connor

Both the right and left are clamoring for President Bush to appoint the right replacement for Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who recently resigned from the high court. The litmus test seems to be about abortion.

The left wants someone who will keep in place Roe vs. Wade, while the right wants someone who will uphold conservative views on abortion and other issues.

Day O’Connor, who was appointed by President Reagan, was a swing vote on many cases before the court, opting to support a woman’s right to choose regarding abortion while taking more conservative stands on issues related to federalism and state’s rights.

Sandra Day O’Connor distinguished herself through her sound character and constitutional independence. President Bush would be well served to appoint someone of Day O’Connor’s integrity and judicial standing regardless of what activists on the right and left want.

The London bombings

The G-8 Summit last week in Gleneagles, Scotland, which focused on African debt and Global Warming, was overshadowed by the tragic bombings in London.

While we can all argue about whether the War on Terrorism has been carried out in the most strategic fashion - especially with military resources being diverted away from Afghanistan to Iraq, we are all in agreement that Al Qaeda, and the fundamental extremism that feeds it, must be put down.

Al Qaeda is essentially at war with the West which is becoming more and more united as victims of terrorism. First the United States and 9/11, then the Spanish in Madrid, and now the British in London.

The G-8 summit turned from a discussion about aid and the environment to a meeting about terrorism. In addition to the G-8 leaders, heads of state from China, Mexico, India, Brazil and South Africa were quick to align themselves in a united front against what Vincente Fox of Mexico termed “this evil.”The bombings, while taking innocent lives in London, was aimed at freedom loving people everywhere.

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