Mark this under the category of "we told you so."
A recent report from the Mississippi Legislative Budget Office shows that the state budget took a big hit in May, coming in roughly $107 million under budget. For the entire fiscal year, which began in July 2014, the state is barely staying afloat thanks to the oft-maligned federal government. Thanks, Thad. If it were not for federal transfers for such things as infrastructure and health care, the state could be nearly $29 million in the red. So much for fiscal conservatism.
If you recall from earlier this year, without any hearings or any input from the state economist, Republicans rushed a bill which would likely have cut 30 percent of the state's general fund. The model was based off of legislation from Republican-led Kansas, which held the belief that if you build it, it will come. It didn't happen. In fact, just the opposite happened. The state of Kansas is nearly $600 million under budget, their schools are closing, and their roads are falling apart. This same plan is what Mississippi Republicans wanted to implement in our state.
The legislature is not funding public education as it is required by law to do, and the proposal by the Republicans would have further set Mississippi back from that goal were it not for Democratic leadership being responsible against reckless Republican priorities. Think about it like this: take the levels the legislature is funding public education today and reduce it by 30 percent. Scary, huh? Not if you're Republican House Appropriations Chairman Herb Frierson, who is "hopeful" it all works out.
Additional examples of Republicans not being into public education can be found HERE and HERE and HERE. As the saying still goes, "You can be a Republican in Mississippi, or you can support education, but you can't do both."