Yesterday’s Colorado Republican State Convention – with key video at Slapstick Politics and a great recap from Night Twister – was bolstered by the announcement of the taxpayers’ legal victory against Gov. Bill Ritter for his unconstitutional property tax hike.
But Michael at Best Destiny has some sage cautionary advice for Colorado Republicans on how to respond to Friday’s courtroom decision:
Republicans MUST NOT go out in public and seem too giddy about this. They should talk about checks and balances, and limiting the governor’s ability to act unilaterally, and the majority’s clear disregard for the Constitution.
But if they seem like they’re just glad to have the money taken back by the general public, it’ll be a lot harder to convince the electorate that it’s not about handicapping the schools. We’ve seen the Dems win with just such arguments, before–and this time they have Douglas Bruce in the legislature as a target for their ire.
Republicans have to Jiu-Jitsu this and start talking about school innovations, about schools that are succeeding very nicely on the old budget, about New York and Washington schools that get almost twice as much money but are miserable failures, and about how the Dems have voted to remove accountability while turning over more money to schools and a system that is not showing any results. If we get bogged down strictly on the issue of money for the schools, we lose; if we can turn it into a discussion of genuine education reform, I think we can hold our ground on this issue.