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Voters Still Saying CUT

No matter how liberals try to spin it, Texas voters say in a new poll they clearly want the state’s budget balanced by spending cuts. As our own poll found, those same voters won’t be happy with legislators who do anything else.

A University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll released today finds Texas voters by a 2-to-1 margin want the state budget balanced by budget cuts.

The spin, of course, is that voters’ “enthusiasm dissipates when asked if they support specific cuts.”

Perhaps so, but that doesn’t change the fact that those same voters want state spending reduced, and are not interested in new revenues flowing into the treasury.

If anything, the enthusiasm dissipation is owing as much to misinformation as anything else. Just consider the number of horror stories Texans are being treated to by irresponsible “journalists” being manipulated by school administrators. We are deluged almost daily with stories of major cuts to the classroom as apparently the first line of expenditure reduction.

Never mind that superintendents are making multiples of teacher salaries. Never mind lucrative bonus packages paid out to administrators this year. Never mind that half of every education dollar is spent outside the classroom.

Those facts go conveniently unreported by the press. All Mr. & Mes. Texas know is that Johnny’s math teacher is being threatened with her job by a superintendent and layers upon layers of administrators who live high on the hog.

In a poll we commissioned in January, we found that Texans of all political parties and income ranges were more likely to support budget-cutters in the next election… and more likely to oppose tax-raisers.

UT professor and pollster Jim Henson perfectly created the leftist “straw man” strategy in his comments about the poll to the Texas Tribune:

“Frankly, if you’re assuming the results of the last election mean you should cut and that people meant government should completely go away, you’re overreaching.”

So, who said the election was about government “go away”? Seems more accurate to say the election was about voters telling politicians to wise up and be responsible.

The “overreach” would be to say that Texans want more spending when they are repeatedly telling pollsters they want cuts.

The responsible thing for legislators to do is carefully cut the budget, removing non-essential programs and gutting administrative overhead.

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Michael Quinn Sullivan

Michael is the CEO of Empower Texans. A graduate of Texas A&M, former newspaper reporter, one-time Capitol Hill staffer, think tank vice president, and an Eagle Scout, Sullivan is married with three children. He divides his time between the Metroplex, the rest of Texas, and Austin.

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