The first person to feel the political fall-out from the Terri Schiavo fight is the big guy, himself: Jeb. The Southwest Florida Herald-Tribune says the lame duck probably sacrificed this year’s legislative agenda to his ongoing efforts to assert his will in the right-to-die case.
Medicaid reform, limits on legal settlements paid by businesses, elimination of a tax break for wealthy investors and rules to control growth in Florida were four of Bush’s major agenda items when lawmakers began the two-month session in March.
But to varying degrees, lawmakers are poised to only tiptoe forward. And next year, lawmakers may not have the appetite for a major agenda as they hit the campaign trail in 2006, Bush’s last year in office.
Nah, there’s still plenty of time, Jeb sputtered as he dipped his beak just below the water.
Bush acknowledged the nearly monthlong debate over the Schiavo case slowed progress.
“This issue transcends politics,” he said, “so yes, it’s taken — deservedly so — it’s taken some attention away from other matters. Having said that, we have time to deal with the policy initiatives.”
I don’t know, Jeb. The hotly contested and very high stakes battle over slot machines in Broward and Dade counties, as well as the Senate President’s personal goal of passing lobbying reforms might crowd your “starve the poor, feed the rich” agenda. Speaking of which, please pass the orange marmalade.