After losing his temper over his inability to control a co-equal branch of government and once again threatening to veto a budget that includes many of his own priorities, Governor Lombardo is getting slammed for putting his partisan wish list over Nevadans. If Lombardo vetoes the budget and triggers a government shutdown for simply not getting his way, state services like public safety, schools, and veterans benefits could be impacted and Nevadans will pay the price.
Read more below on Lombardo’s “anti-democratic authoritarianism.”
May 28, 2023
- Last week, Democrats in the state Legislature agreed with our assessment and passed a budget package that includes the vast majority of Lombardo’s proposals. State Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro described the package as “80-90% consensus.” She said that the few differences between the governor’s proposals and the Legislature’s final budget language were almost all “agreed to by Republicans and Democrats in largely unanimous form.” She bolstered her argument by noting that two of Nevada’s six budget bills passed the state Senate unanimously.
- Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager concurred, explaining that with a Democratic-controlled Legislature and a Republican governor, the two co-equal branches of government each had to compromise and sacrifice some of their priorities to move forward. “You give and you take, and you give and you take some more,” Yeager said. “These budgets reflect that process.”
- Yet despite broad bipartisan support and historic investments in public safety and education — two issues Lombardo campaigned on as his top priorities — as of the writing of this editorial, the governor continues to threaten to veto the budget package and shut down Nevada’s government until he gets everything he wants.
- That’s irresponsible and wreaks of anti-democratic authoritarianism. If Lombardo follows through on his threat to veto the budget, it’s hard-working, middle-class Nevadans who will suffer the most.
- Unless grownups prevail over Lombardo’s reckless foot stomping, there could be grave consequences for everyone, from state employees who rely on the state for their paycheck, to small-business owners who have contracts with the state, to school districts that rely on state appropriations to complete their own budgets.
- Despite these risks, this brand of performative political brinkmanship is part of Lombardo’s and the GOP’s playbook because they don’t care about governing for all of us. They don’t take governing seriously.
- Nevadans elected Lombardo to serve all Nevadans, not to funnel money to wealthy people and protect his political and financial backers. His threats to veto a fiscally responsible and bipartisan budget are a deep and profound abuse of his office.
- Voters across the state should take note that legislators of both political parties did their job and negotiated a budget agreement that has earned broad support for its service to all Nevadans.
- Lombardo, on the other hand, is refusing to fulfill even the most basic responsibilities of his office. In the process he’s allowing the whims of wealthy donors and political ideologues to put our state’s economy and educational system at risk.
- Lombardo has never been qualified to be governor and clearly thinks the role of elective office is to exact revenge on his adversaries. He would be wise to stop taking donor calls and instead pick up the phone and call some actual leaders. They can teach him that when you’re entrusted to steer the ship of state, you’re not allowed to point it at the rocks. His job is to work for all Nevadans, and the sooner he learns that, the better.
Read the full editorial here.