A Pa. Senate lawsuit?: The claptrap of connivers
Pennsylvania Senate Republicans, honked off that Republican Gov. Tom Corbett would have the audacity to use his constitutional line-item veto to embarrass them for fiscal malpractice, have retained Steve MacNett, their former general counsel, to consider a lawsuit against Mr. Corbett. Taxpayers are ponying up $375 an hour for this circus.
Senate GOPers insist the governor acted illegally when he struck items from the “fiscal code,” enabling legislation used to enact the state budget. The line-item veto, they claim, applies only to budget appropriations. Never mind that tucked into the fiscal code were appropriations, including one to pay for overly perked legislators’ parking.
And just to drive home his point about fiscal fatuity, Corbett also cut $65 million from the Legislature’s operating budget. That will force it to tap its dubious $150 million-plus “reserve” fund, a slush fund designed to thwart the separation of powers doctrine.
The GOP (and even some Democrats) insist any lawsuit would be about protecting “the institution” and preserving power separation. But that’s the claptrap of connivers looking to score political points and, as per usual, at the public’s expense.
Here’s a novel concept for not just Senate Republicans in Harrisburg but the General Assembly in toto: Try serving the public instead of yourselves for a change.