Don’t send out a mailer decrying “socialism” and bragging about how you “helped balance the state’s budget” if you don’t want to get called on this:
A rousing campaign mailer lists the 7th Congressional District candidate’s credentials. It says [Clay] Cox has “real-world” experience balancing budgets, both as a successful businessman and a state representative:
“For six years, I served our community as a conservative state legislator. In every one of those years, I helped balance the state’s budget.”
So Cox helped balance the state budget?
Well, of course. So did the state’s 235 other legislators.
The state Constitution requires the Legislature to balance the budget. Consider Article III, Section IX, Paragraph IV:
“The General Assembly shall not appropriate funds for any given fiscal year which, in aggregate, exceed a sum equal to the amount of unappropriated surplus expected to have accrued in the state treasury at the beginning of the fiscal year together with an amount not greater than the total treasury receipts from existing revenue sources anticipated to be collected in the fiscal year, less refunds, as estimated in the budget report and amendments thereto.”
PolitiFact Georgia also notes:
Cox’s claim was misleading. Not only did he leave out the crucial fact that balancing the state’s budget is a legislator’s duty. He and his colleagues “helped” pass a budget that’s reliant on money from the federal government, which is deep in debt. In effect, Georgia’s in the black thanks in large part to the deficit spending Cox rails against.
In other words, the state Constitution requires a balanced budget.
The FY 2011 budget, which Cox “helped balance,” is over $38.5 billion with $12.8 billion in funding from Washington. That’s sort of funny because Cox was also a co-signer on a resolution claiming state sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment.
In no way do I disagree with states asserting the Tenth Amendment, I just wish the Republican caucus would, you know, actually do it.