Sunday, November 04, 2007

Vouchers: not really about the poor, and what happens when they lose

We told ourselves we wouldn't write one more word about the Overstock.Com Voucher Act of 2007, but we couldn't resist after this morning's Trib article, which revealed:
1. Vouchers are not about the poor. Only 6% of voucher supporters said it was from a desire to help low-income families. Duh. If this law had been limited to low-income families, it would have gone down in flames early as "welfare" or other governmental handout. If the legislature's real aim had been to help low-income families, the obvious step would have been to eliminate subsidies for well-off Utahns, but the pro-voucher faction knew that would never fly with Republicans. Pretending that PCE/Patrick Byrne, the Sutherland Institute, or GOP leaders give one whit about the poor in pushing these vouchers is one of the sillier campaign tactics in recent memory.


2. GOP leadership endorses vouchers. What?!! This changes everything! Actually, is anyone surprised? Party leaders -- in any party -- are more dogmatic than their constituents, and state Republicans have no incentive to moderate their views because they know that, except in rare instances (Dave Buhler), they will be re-elected no matter what they do.

3. GOP leadership will retaliate when vouchers fail. This wasn't in the Trib article, probably because it's so well known that it wasn't considered newsworthy. Don't try to reach your GOP legislator after the election; he'll be too busy summoning people to Capitol Hill or writing up bills like the Greg Curtis Public School Teacher Salary Reduction Act of 2008...

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