Sick of the legislature doing nothing about the budget during what were supposed to be special sessions, Governor Paterson is asking for special powers to make his own damn cuts. “Cut this deficit with me or I’ll do it myself,” he said in a video address today. He’s sending the legislature an “executive option proposal” that would empower him to make such decisions, as “traditional mechanisms for securing the funds necessary to run the state may not be available” — meaning that the senate has its thumb up its ass and will dither and duck until the repo men come to take their microphones and lecterns…
The lawmakers are skeptical, to say the least (“What’s next, martial law?” says assemblyman Rory Lancman), but politically at least it makes sense for Paterson. He’s been trying to distance himself from these yo-yos for a long time, and their inevitable rejection of his proposal will be yet another indicator that he’s serious about making cuts and they’re not. Of course, it also plays into his image as an incompetent buffoon.
But it’s hard to say what else he could try, short of actual martial law, which is beginning to look better and better.