State of the State: Governor Issues A Call to Arms
“He says, ‘This is my agenda and everybody has to work on it.’ That’s a corporate approach. That’s one-side unilateral approach. That doesn’t work,” said AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer George Nee. “The governor should be a leader of bringing people together to have people solve joint problems, not just work on his agenda. That’s the problem.”
The executive director of the largest state employees union agreed: “I heard more of the same: Attacking the unions. Attacking the elderly. Attacking the poor. No job creation,” said Dennis Grilli, head of Council 94, the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees.
But they only hear what they want to. From the speech:
Tonight, I ask the General Assembly, the public employee union leadership, and all municipal officials to work together with my administration to find ways to implement these changes.
They will transform our state and secure an exciting future for our children. In the world of politics, we may be Republicans, Democrats, or Independents – but we are all Rhode Islanders, and we’re here because we love our state. To fix this problem, it will take all of us in this room working together.
Good luck, Governor. To too many people in that room last night, “working together” means “do what I want”. But I think Governor Carcieri knows that, which is why he attempted to appeal directly to the non-trough feeding citizens of Rhode Island:
…you should also know this. This plan faces many obstacles. Everyone with something to lose will lobby this Assembly furiously against these spending reductions. If they succeed, this plan will falter and your taxes will go up….
So, tonight, I call on you – the hardworking Rhode Islander; the average citizen anxious about your own rising costs and the nation’s economic outlook – to make your voice heard.
Your voice must be just as loud as the powerbrokers and special interests that regularly patrol these halls. If you want change, you must be a part of it!