Stumbo - A Political Extortionist (3/11/10) 

I've often complained that almost all the power in Kentucky state government is concentrated in the hands of only a few people  whose "my way or the highway" attitudes keep our state from ever entering the 21st century. But I've rarely seen such a blatant example of this problem as the one Greg Stumbo provided earlier this week.

In a tremendous show of audacity, he announced that while a half-billion dollars in the new budget will be spent on school construction plans, none of it will be spent in the districts of representatives who opposed the Democrat-sponsored revenue plan that he favored. And here's what he said to justify this vindictive act toward so many of Kentucky's counties: 

(Greg Stumbo  – "Maybe their economy is a lot different from everybody else's. I don't know. That was their choice. They made that choice.") 

Really, Mr. Stumbo? Because some of your colleagues had the nerve to disagree with you about how Kentucky revenue should be collected and spent, their constituents "chose" not to share in any of it?

This is simple political extortion. School funding is a universal need – not something to be doled out as a payoff for votes. This is the public's money – not Greg Stumbo's. And his cynical action makes as clear an example of an abuse of power as I've seen. 

I'm Bill Lamb, and that's my…Point of View.