One thing is for certain about Texas State Sen. Dan Patrick – you never can predict what he will do or say.
“We are going to have to make serious decisions in the future because we can’t keep stretching the nickel,” Patrick said. “How do we fund education long term? I think we should add 2 cents to the sales tax, and dedicate that to education. The reason I think that is: for every penny we bring in, we get $2.5 billion.”
Can't keep stretching the nickel? I bet that is news to the guys over at Empower Texans, Agenda Wise, or Americans for Prosperity. They've been doing some great work exposing the wasteful spending in the Texas education system. But hey, Dannie says nope, we've cut enough, time to give them $5 billion more.
Are you kidding me?
You never know what you are going to get with Dannie. One day he's behind the pulpit at Second Baptist scolding the choir, the next he's at Hooters eating fried pickles while ogling the little cuties. Or maybe he does both on the same day. Who knows with Dannie?
What you do know is that this is not the same guy that took a busload of people up to Austin in 2003 to protest high property taxes. You know, that signature issue of his? The one that he has seemingly forgotten about? That Dan Patrick was a rabble-rouser, earning a spot on Texas Monthly's Worst list after his first session.
Dannie didn't like that too much.
So he reinvented himself. He became a politician. This Dannie is going for a big old hug from the likes of Paul Burka:
If he carries through on his concern about the need for more revenue for public schools, he will have earned–in my book, at least–the stature to hold statewide office. In the Perry era, addressing the state’s problems has gone out of fashion. Texas needs public officials who actually care about fixing what is broken instead of spouting ideology. If Dan Patrick wants to be that kind of public official, I’m all for him.
Why of course you would be for that Dannie, Paul! That is right up your alley: good, old-fashioned conservative Democrat style. If schools say they need more money, by golly, give it to 'em! Waste, schmaste, we don't need to worry about that stuff, we have back-slapping parties to get to!
Man, I'm sure glad we have a G-d fearing, fiscally conservative Jew as Speaker of the House to curb the big spending habits of the God fearin', fried pickle eatin' Christians up there.
UPDATE: It seems that some people don't know Dannie like I do. They question the writer's accuracy and wonder if he called for or push reductions or a trade off for property tax reductions. The answer is no, he didn't. He spoke only of new revenue, no offsets, no spending cuts, nothing, just new revenue. I called the author, Molly Ryan, and talked to her at length about it. It is what it is folks. And long time Dannie watchers know that.
UPDATE 2: The article in question now has this in bold print at the top:
Note: This story has been corrected from an earlier version published Sept. 1. Sen. Patrick is in favor of increasing the sales tax, but will offset this increase with a reduced property tax rate.
And this is the "correction", which is an addition:
In order to offset the sales tax increase, Patrick said he would reduce the property tax rate and the apprasial cap from 10 percent to 5 percent.
When I talked to the author, Molly Ryan, on the phone this morning, I specifically asked if Dannie had mentioned anything about an offset and she specifically said, several times, no. Why the addition now? A little bullying going on?