GOP House candidate Caulkins says new budget is 'not good for the state'
Republican state House candidate Dan Caulkins argues that the newly enacted 2019 state budget is in no way the balanced piece of legislation that it is being sold to taxpayers as.
“It’s not a budget at all,” Caulkins told the Chambana Sun. “A budget is when you have an idea of how much money you have and a plan on how you plan to spend it. What we have here is a situation where a group of people got together and decided they were going to spend a lot of money, irregardless of how much they really have.”
Caulkins added the shame of the $38.5 billion spending plan, which is being touted as the state’s first balanced budget since 2001, is that he thinks the climate was ripe for major change and reforms.
“We had great opportunity to get something done that was meaningful,” he added. “This bill is being celebrated as a major accomplishment where lawmakers came together in a bipartisan way to get along and get something done. The thing is [that] Democrats can get along with anyone as long as they’re allowed to spend a lot of money.”
Caulkins, a Decatur Republican who is running against Democrat Jennifer McMillin for the seat being vacated by Rep. Bill Mitchell (R-Forsyth) in the 101st District, said that all the extravagant spending has left him at a loss for words.
“I’m looking at spending on a pace that I can’t begin to understand,” he said. “This is not good for the state. [House Speaker Mike] Madigan and all these house democrats are just career politicians that don’t get it. There’s only one way to explain how they can sleep at night, and that’s that they have to truly believe their jobs, as elected officials, is to take care of their friends and family only. That’s the only way I can see anyone feeling good about this plan and all this spending.”
Caulkins said that what makes the new plan even worse is the fact that it comes on the heels of last year’s record-setting 32 percent income tax hike.
“Politicians simply don’t want to do the hard work of trimming and cutting what has to be cut,” Caulkins added. “It’s like they feel they have this reserve of cash in place and anytime they need more money, for whatever reason, they jump back on the backs of taxpayers.”