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By Jamie Serra
Monday July 01, 2013 at 6:13 pm

Earlier today, Representatives Frank Dermody, Mike Hanna and Joe Markosek of the House Democratic Caucus reflected upon last week's budget proceedings.

As negotiations broke down over transportation funding, liquor privatization, and pension reform, the Governor's sole success was executing a spending plan for the Commonwealth within Constitutional requirements.

Last night, Governor Corbett signed HB1437 into law while stating, "I am honored to be signing a budget that is balanced, on time and honors the promises I made to the citizens of Pennsylvania."

"This plan, once again, provides record levels of state funding for basic education, while meeting our obligations to those in need, to the safety of our citizens, and to our job creators, all without raising taxes." He continued, "This budget, once again, places education as our highest priority accounting for 41 cents of every state dollar."

Not according to House Democratic Leader Frank Dermody.

When asked to provide his take on the statements made by Governor Corbett last night Dermody asserted, "They're all important issues, we obviously feel the Governor's priorities are skewed, his priority was selling the state liquor stores, which we think is wrong-headed, and to tie them together was wrong-headed as well." A statement that House Majority Leader Mike Turzai said he disagrees with when Governor Corbett was asked about the linkage between transportation funding and liquor privatization last night.

Representative Mike Hanna also disagrees with Turzai's assessment, "The suggestion that there was no linkage there is a little bit ludicrous. Obviously we've heard very strongly from House and Senate Republican leaders that there was very strong linkage between the liquor bill and whether or not transportation was going to be considered." He continued, "If he hadn't worked transportation into liquor privatization, this would be done."

Is it about failed leadership?

The underlying tone from House Democrats this afternoon was that they were cut out of the process while House Republicans lacked a sufficient number of votes to pass an adequate transportation funding bill. Meanwhile, House Republicans continued to demand that House Democrats vote against their interests without providing any worthwhile concessions.

This difference of opinion is also reflected in statements made on Saturday by Representatives Mike Vereb and Dave Reed, "They're not paid to think, they're paid to stick to their word."

Meanwhile House Democrats contend that they've been ignored for three years.

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