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Monday, September 14, 2009

Hansen Getting “To the Point”

Goeff Hansen (R-Hart) got “to the point” Sunday Morning on the show of the same name hosted by Rick Albin on Wood TV 8. Along with Representative Hansen was colleague Bob Genetski (R-Saugatuck).

The show was about the Budget negotiations going on now within the Michigan government. What is adding extra weight to the process is the two week Constitutional deadline coming up, by which the Budget by law has to be balanced. Failure to produce a budget by that deadline could result in a “Shutting Down” of state government.

See the interview for yourself from the link below then we’ll talk more. Grab a cup of whatever and enjoy, the interview is about 25 min. long.


Back to Basics, my words. Representative Hansen said, “We have to get back to what the Constitution says we have to do”…We have to fund that first.

Rick Albin then asked in effect how we reconcile the two different philosophical approaches to the money shortfall. Do we do that thru raising revenues through higher taxes or make cuts in what we spend. Reps, Hansen and Genetski have experience in that question as Genetski is on the appropriations committee and Hansen has been in on 5 Budgets and been chair of appropriations twice.

Below is a quote from Rep. Hansen about what the job of balancing the budget will involve. He gives some insight into the hard decisions all will face to get us out of this mess.

At a “budget Boot Camp” they were asked not what you want to cut but the question was – “Tell us what you can stomach” Hansen went on to say “…….these are terribly hard decisions we’re going to have to make. If we don’t make them now, if we kick the can down the road again, next year is going to be as bad, and after that we’re going to fall off a cliff.”

What I liked about the interview was that Hansen gave us a look to the future and the rewards possible if we do the hard thing now. He said.

“We have to get Michigan back to the lean mean machine; because when we come out of this recession we have to be the first ones out of the blocks.” He put it out there that we can control the future of Michigan; that we have the power to go on the offensive and not wallow in our self inflicted misery ----- forever.

With Michigan having the highest unemployment rate in the entire country and lots of other terrible economic indicators, it is refreshing to hear a counter to the “Malaise” and “Share the Suffering” kind of talk coming from the other side. This type of talk was reminiscent of the Carter - Reagan debate over the same type of thing and I was happy to hear it.

Representative Hansen brought his retail small business experience to the front to cite specific instances that when a product is taxed higher, causing the price to go up that item is sold less, bringing in not more, but the same or less revenue. The case he cited was cigarettes and the immediate drop in sales the day after the big tax increase went into effect. As Goeff Hansen reflected, if it helped people quit smoking that was great; but as far as raising revenue it proved to be a failure.

Hansen brought to the debate a common sense type of thinking that needs to be applauded at this time in Michigan’s history if we expect to change the course in which we are headed.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

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