It's going to be fun to be in Salem during the '07 session. For the first time since 1991 - there will be a chance to be pro-active instead of playing triage with basic services. However, it's all about simple math. The agenda Governor Kulongoski is proposing will require a 3/5s vote from both houses of the legislature since he's talking about revenue enhancement:
- raising the corporate minimum income tax to support pre-K and higher ed;
- raising the cigarette tax to expand health care coverage;
- adding a surcharge on car insurance for putbacks for state police;
- putting a hold on the corporate kicker for a rainy day fund;
That means in the House he will need 40 votes; and in the Senate 18. In the House the Ds will need to keep their 31 member caucus united plus harvest the votes of at least 9 Rs - a daunting task given the surly nature of Rs these days. In the Senate, it will require the 17 Ds to keep their caucus disciplined and get the two I's - at least. As they say - the devil is in the details!