Sunday, January 2, 2011

McIlheran Hedges To Make A Sale

Patrick McIlheran is trying to convince his readers that Scott Walker's power grab isn't really a power grab, but is something totally benign. But one word in his verbose oversell of the power grab is what poker players and human lie detectors call "the tell."
The governor's power to veto is a big one. Wisconsin’s governor can rewrite budgets with the partial-veto power, and that power used to be even stronger. Conservatives liked it when Tommy Thompson did this and didn’t when Jim Doyle did, and perhaps it’s better if no governor could so edit law, but the point here is that Walker’s not seeking the power to rewrite laws or even regulations. We haven’t seen a bill, just the idea, but Walker appears to ask only for the ability to veto new regulations -- not edit new ones, not veto old ones. The result is one more opportunity to deny power to the state overall, a reasonably safe bet.
The use of the word "appears" would indicate that either McIlheran isn't sure of his facts (which is highly likely) or he knows that he is lying and is carefully choosing his words so he can't get called out for telling a flat-out lie (which is even more likely).

Either way, Walker shouldn't be given this kind of carte blanche. And before any conservatives would try to argue otherwise, think about this: How would you feel if Jim Doyle had that same kind of power?

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