The Washington Post

McDonnell: Democrats’ budget wish list too much, too late

Add another letter to the pile swapped lately between Gov. Robert F. McDonnell and Senate Democratic leaders.

Gov. Robert F. McDonnell sent yet another letter about the budget to Senate Democratic leaders Friday. (Tracy A. Woodward/The Washington Post)

McDonnell asked them for a list of their demands for his $85 billion spending plan — then promptly shared his letter with the media without waiting for a response.

“[Y]our release of your letter without waiting even twenty-four hours for a response smacks of gamesmanship and not of an effort to resolve our differences,” Saslaw and McEachin wrote back.

Saslaw and McEachin wrote to the governor again this week, with a whopping $600 million wish list. On Friday, as the General Assembly decided to call a special session because it could not complete the budget by Saturday’s deadline, it was McDonnell’s turn to issue the annoyed response.

“On the one hand, I am appreciative of getting this letter in that it finally brings us to a point where we can examine differences of opinion over budget policy as opposed to your previous and ongoing focus on committee assignments,” McDonnell wrote, referring to their efforts to use the budget stalemate to win more Democratic committee power — one that McEachin said continued Friday. (“There are still discussions about committees,” McEachin told reporters.)

“On the other hand, I am very disappointed that you have delayed specifying the nature or composition of these issues until now,” McDonnell continued. “I have received them with just three days left before the General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn Sine Die.”

McDonnell asks them to “follow up on what revenues you would raise or what other cuts you recommend to pay for the $605 million in new spending.”

Stay tuned for the next letter.

Laura Vozzella covers Virginia politics for The Washington Post.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
Is fencing the answer to brain health?
Miss Manners: The technology's changed, but the rules are the same
Behind a famous and fast steam locomotive
Play Videos
This man's job is binge-watching for Netflix
How to survive a shark attack
What you need to know about trans fats
Play Videos
Michael Bolton's cinematic serenade to Detroit
How to avoid harmful chemicals in school supplies
Riding the X2 with D.C.'s most famous rapper
Play Videos
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
How to get organized for back to school
Pandas, from birth to milk to mom