Law and Sausage

There’s an old saying that you should never watch either of two things being made: sausage or laws. A report in the Indianapolis Star’s “Behind Closed Doors” section this morning is a good example of the sort of game-playing and disregard of the public interest that is the counterpart to sweeping up the floor to plump up the sausage.

As I’ve posted previously, Mike Young has authored a bill that would divest the Indianapolis City-County Council of its fiscal authority. His bill–and a couple of other iterations also pending–would create an “imperial” Mayor no longer answerable to Councilors for spending, hiring and other important decisions that are now part of the democratic checks and balances. It’s terrible policy.

In response, Democratic County Chair Ed Treacy has an equally bad idea. He wants the Democrats in the Legislature to hold the mass transit referendum hostage. Since it will take actual bipartisanship–i.e., votes from both Republicans and Democrats–to pass the bill allowing Marion County voters to decide for ourselves whether we want decent mass transit enough to pay for it, Treacy proposes that Democrats withhold those votes until and unless the Mayor-as-King bill is defeated.

The only people who get forgotten in this unsavory game of political chicken are the citizens of central Indiana. But hey–watch those politicians play that inside baseball game! Watch them give as good as they get! Tit for tat….and screw the public interest.

Pass the sausage.