Thomas Fitzgerald asks Democratic consultant Larry Ceisler for the Democratic take on the New Gentle Tom Corbett product roll-out, and Larry utterly fails to deliver the payload:
Philadelphia Democratic consultant Larry Ceisler said he still heard in Corbett’s speeches the familiar themes of fiscal responsibility and accountability.
The difference these days, said Ceisler, is that Corbett is in a position to argue that the reason the state has more money to spread around is because of the belt-tightening he championed in his first year in office.
And if that helps him politically, said Ceisler, “there is nothing wrong with that.”
“He reads the newspapers,” said Ceisler. “He reads the polls. It’s not like the man is sitting in a bubble.”
Whether the new tone continues and translates into wider public support remains to be seen. But, Ceisler noted, Corbett’s narrative these days may at the very least help blunt some of the more vicious critiques of his administration’s policies.
“He may not win people over,” Ceisler said, “but perhaps he gets to soften some of the
Where this goes off the rails is that Larry gives Tom Corbett credit for “belt-tightening” – a thing that simply has not occurred under Tom Corbett’s administration, and a thing that voters also do not believe has happened.
The story of the past 3 years is that Corbett and the Republicans thought $1 billion in business tax cuts were more important than using the same $1 billion for basic education and health care and public services. That’s not “belt-tightening” it’s the definition of fiscal promiscuity.
The Democratic hacks we need would take the “hard choices” Republican talking point head on. Corbett made the lowest political difficulty choices he could have made – prioritizing stuff powerful business leaders want over the needs of powerless school children and poor people.