So. Republicans yanked $30 million in JTED funds from last year's budget, and now they've had second thoughts and want to restore the money. And by "second thoughts," I mean the business community climbed on their backs for cutting one of the best educational programs in Arizona for creating skilled workers who can come out of high school ready to fill needed positions in the private sector. Republicans joined with Democrats who voted against the cuts last year and agreed to restore, well, not the whole $30 million, but close: $28 million.
I'd say good for the Republican legislators, except they're the bastards who voted to effectively kill JTED in the first place, and all they're doing is giving back 93 percent of what they took away. That's no more praiseworthy than the decision by Ducey and the Republicans to restore $300 million a year in education funding, 70 percent of the money they illegally stole in 2009. It's the deadbeat dads scenario all over again, where they're agreeing to start paying part of the child support they withheld from their kids. I guess you can say with JTED, they're not taking the money from the kids' trust fund like they are with the Proposition 123 deal they want the voters to pass, but that sure as hell doesn't make them heroes.
Yet, apparently, they want to be proclaimed as heroes, according to the last line in Howard Fischer's article
on the subject. Lately, I've found that the literary critical skills I learned in college to analyze works of literature are valuable in understanding the commentary Howie lays between the lines in some of his reporting about the wheeling and dealing at the state capitol. Sometimes what Howie leaves unsaid, hinted at, is the most interesting part of the article. Here's that last line.
The Senate president [Andy Biggs] also insisted that the Republican majority should get credit for restoring the funds even though it was a GOP budget last year that first cut the dollars.
Did you catch Howie's transitional phrase, "even though"? It's a skillful segue from the Republicans wanting credit for restoring JTED funds to reminding the reader that they're the ones who made the cuts in the first place.
The way Republicans deal with education funding is stunning. It's the rough equivalent of dad giving his kid a spanking, then asking for a "Thank you" when he stops.