(Chuck Muth) – It’s impossible to overstate just how badly Democrat Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro and Democrat Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager fudged-up the 2023 legislative session.
They’re gonna need a steam shovel to get all the egg off their faces.
We haven’t seen a rout like this since General George Armstrong Custer’s “Take no prisoners!” debacle at Little Big Horn – or the Golden Knights’ evisceration of the Florida Panthers in last night’s Stanley Cup finals game.
Go Knights, go!
By dicking around Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo and legislative Republicans throughout this session, all Cannibizzaro and The Yeagermeister did – as Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto put it immediately after Pearl Harbor – was “to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”
Grab another cup of coffee – or a shot of Jameson. This is gonna be another long one…
Let’s start with last November’s election results.
Lombardo didn’t run as a gun totin’, bible-thumpin’, election denyin’, MAGA tea partier. That, understandably, worried many movement conservatives in our solidly purple state, especially after the disaster of ex-Gov. Brian SandRINOval’s sellout over tax hikes in 2015.
But guess what? HE WON.
And Master of Disaster Steve Sisolak’s reign-of-error got terminated with extreme prejudice.
But Cannibizzaro and The Yeagermeister either didn’t get the memo or completely misread the tea leaves.
They *assumed* – having a super-majority in the Assembly and near-super-majority in the Senate – that they were gonna be able to roll over Gov. Lombardo like Betty Crocker rolls over a lump of cookie dough.
But as Felix Unger famously explained in that infamous “Odd Couple” episode, when you assume, you make an “ass” out of “u” and “me.” And what horse’s asses they look like today.
Gov. Lombardo recognized and accepted that he was running a “purple” state in which a Ron DeSantis/Greg Abbott conservative legislative agenda wasn’t in the cards. So he picked his battles wisely and pursued modest proposals that not only were near and dear to the hearts of conservatives, but independent voters as well.
Lombardo played the Dufus D’s like a Stradivarius.
With their huge legislative majorities – and Biden Bucks burning holes in their pockets – the Democrats would have proposed dumping far more than $2 billion taxpayer dollars into our failure factory public schools.
But in his January State of the State address, Lombardo strategically beat them to the punch and stole their thunder.
The political advantage of far-left whining about education supposedly being “underfunded” was taken completely off the table. The best the Dufus D’s could crow about was getting an additional 0.1% spending boost over Lombardo’s proposal.
Not one percent. POINT one percent. Try putting that on bumper stickers in the 2024 campaigns.
In much the same manner, Lombardo snatched away the libs’ issue of increasing pay for government workers.
No, we conservatives don’t like that any more than we like hiking failure factory spending. But the political reality of a sharply divided government meant it was going to happen anyway.
Now Lombardo, not the Dufus D’s, gets credit for it – another issue sure to be popular with independent voters. Voters who, in a purple state, will decide who wins and who loses in close legislative races next year.
Democrats got screwed, blued, and tattooed by Lombardo, who was playing this session for the long term.
“Joe the Moderate”? OK, fine. But like it or not, thanks to all the California missionaries who have moved here after soiling their own nest, we now live in a moderate state. Lombardo recognized that; the Dufus D’s didn’t.
In fact, instead of accepting that reality and running this session in a moderate, bipartisan fashion, they went full-blown Cali-Crazy.
They used their overwhelming majorities to ram through some of the most ridiculous, stupid, asinine, ludicrous, absurd, puddin’-head bills imaginable and dared the governor to veto them, never imagining in their wildest dreams that he’d actually do so.
Boy, did they ever misread and underestimate “Don Veto”!
At press time, I think the number of Lombardo vetoes stands at 32. And breaking former conservative Gov. Jim Gibbons’ record of 48 is in sight with so many Dufus D bills being passed in the last 72 hours.
I hope Lombardo’s pen doesn’t run out of ink!
Another serious miscalculation and strategic blunder was Cannibizzaro’s and The Yeagermeister’s decision to not only sit on the governor’s five policy proposal bills throughout the session but refusing to even hold hearings on a couple of them.
Well, all that did was needlessly piss off the governor and cede the moral high ground to Republicans in the Court of Public Opinion. Because the governor didn’t demand that his bills be passed; he only asked that they be fairly considered, debated, and voted on.
As conservative State Sen. Jeff Stone put it…
“Republicans are going to vote no on this budget because we have a governor that has not had his voice heard, his priorities addressed. Everyone, whether you’re in the majority or the minority, at least deserves a hearing.”
The Dufus D’s refused – and then got a cold dose of reality when Lombardo did what he said he would do but they never thought he’d ever actually do: He vetoed one of their must-pass budget bills.
Oh, the wailing, clucking, and clutching of pearls after that from the left!
We could have ended the drought and filled Lake Mead to over-capacity with all the liberal tears. But they have no one to blame but themselves.
Cannibizzaro and The Yeagermeister got into a game of chicken and assumed Lombardo would blink. He didn’t. Instead, he shoved it right up their collective wazoos. And without Vaseline. Ouch!
But they STILL didn’t learn their lesson. Instead they doubled down.
Not only did they throw temper-tantrums and hissy fits aimed at Lombardo, but they started retaliating against GOP legislators by yanking comparatively inconsequential GOP bills from consideration and stuck ‘em in a drawer.
Man, was THAT stupid!
And here’s where I was wrong…
I noted yesterday that Republicans in the Senate had the power to wring concessions out of the Dufus D’s on the final budget bill, the Capital Improvement Program (CIP), because it required a 2/3 vote for passage the D’s didn’t have.
I wrote, based on historical precedence, that…
“Senate Republicans don’t play hardball. They play whiffle ball. And they’re perfectly content to let Gov. Lombardo take the fall rather than fight like honey badgers for our kids.”
Boy, was I ever wrong! Happily so.
I did add that “there’s still a chance for a miracle but don’t get your hopes up. We’ll have to wait until after the smoke clears tonight to see exactly where we are. Expect the worst and hope for the best.”
Ah, the difference of having an actual lead-by-example Republican governor sitting in the captain’s chair.
Republican Senate Minority Leader Heidi Gansert and the rag-tag team of eight Senate Republicans found their “inner Reagan.”
With just 34 minutes to go before the midnight deadline to end the regular session, they apparently drank a case of tiger blood, had a little Viagra injected into their spines, stuck together, and voted to kill the CIP budget bill.
NOBODY saw that coming!
In her floor statement, Gansert said all the Republicans were asking for was equitable funding for public charter schools on par with funding for public failure factories – though not quite in those words.
In her words, here’s what she said about the Democrats’ spending addiction…
“The irony is that we see pork bills with more bacon and lard packed in them than you’ll find in a Farmer John’s packing plant.”
Dang. That’s, dare I say it, Muth-worthy!
But seriously, this was the first time in my memory that legislative Republicans actually voted as an opposition party rather than as a minority party on a critical bill. A thing of beauty I tell ya.
I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to have been so wrong. I’ll gladly eat that crow sandwich…without ketchup (or catsup if you prefer).
Now, for the record, the Dufus D’s DID succeed in killing any expansion of Opportunity Scholarships (for now), and that’s disappointing. But sh*t happens when you’re trying to get sh*t done with sh*t-for-brains Democrats in charge of the Legislature.
But don’t despair. Yes, some low-income minority kids are going to lose their government-provided Opportunity Scholarships next year. But plans are in the works to fill that gap through other sources. So it ain’t over.
Frankly, sometimes you have to take one step back in order to take two steps forward.
And I have reason to believe that the Democrats’ decision to again screw our kids at the behest of the teachers’ unions is going to result in school choice coming back bigger, badder, and better than we ever would have gotten with just a modest expansion of Opportunity Scholarships.
I’ll explain why in a future Muth’s Truths.
In the end, no matter how Cannibizzaro and The Yeagermeister try to spin this, they acted like petulant children the entire session by ignoring Gov. Lombardo and legislative Republicans and ended up looking like fumbling, bumbling, incompetent fools.
- Raising taxes? Didn’t get it done.
- Gun control? Didn’t get it done.
- Spending one-shot money on recurring government programs? Didn’t get it done.
- A’s stadium subsidy? Didn’t get it done.
- Hollywood movie studio subsidy? Didn’t get it done.
- Assisted suicide? Didn’t get it done.
- Rent control? Didn’t get it done.
- Requiring union “prevailing wage” on government construction projects? Didn’t get it done.
- Allowing boys in girls’ bathrooms and sports? Didn’t get it done.
- Making it easier to cheat in elections? Didn’t get it done.
- Making it easier to be a criminal without penalty? Didn’t get it done.
- Forcing affirmative action “diversity and equity” on Nevadans? Didn’t get it done.
- Forcing pharmacies to print prescriptions in 10 different languages? Didn’t get it done.
- Banning the sale of fluorescent lightbulbs? Didn’t get it done.
- Ending the session and going home on time? Didn’t get it done.
- Making Republicans look like cold, heartless bastards? Didn’t get it done.
And so much more!
Remember when Assemblywoman – and Democrat Party chair – Daniele Monroe-Moreno said in a hearing that she wished she “could legislate what parents do”?
Didn’t get it done.
The Dufus D’s and their leaders underestimated the governor and Leader Gansert.
No, we didn’t get everything we wanted. But all in all, the Dufus D’s were the biggest losers, short-term AND long-term. Remember…
“(George) Washington would come to realize he didn’t need to win every battle to win the war. In fact, he actually lost more battles than he won. … This approach to battle and to the overall war showed Washington as an innovator on the strategic side.”
The special session starts today.
Cannibizzaro and The Yeagermeister will be easy to spot in the building. They’ll be the ones with their tails tucked between their legs and red-faced with embarrassment.
All they did, indeed, was awaken a sleeping giant and fill us with a terrible resolve. They overreached with their grubby little hands and got ‘em whacked off at the wrist.
My only regret is Gov. Joe Don Veto didn’t let me write the proclamation calling these clowns back to class. I would have ended it with…
“CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?!!!”
FAMOUS LAST WORDS
“T-minus 16 hours until the Constitution says they (Legislature) must adjourn. Plenty of time to get all the deals done…” – Liberal blubber-blogger Jon Ralston, 6/5/23
“I don’t understand much about politics…” – Liberal blubber-blogger Jon Ralston, 1/2/20
Mr. Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, publisher of Nevada News & Views, and founder of CampaignDoctor.com. You can sign up for his conservative, Nevada-focused e-newsletter at MuthsTruths.com. His views are his own.