For all Governor Christie’s talk that he’s just trying to bring change and shared sacrifice, the truth is coming out through his aides about a calculated political strategy. And that truth confirms what everyone knew all along, his goal was to demonize the unions, even though the Governor still denies. From the NY Times:
Mr. Christie said there was no plan to put the unions front and center, though some of his aides say privately that it was quite intentional.
But on controlling local government spending and taxes, he acknowledged that “yes, absolutely,” there was a political strategy to doing things in a particular order. The governor’s budget reduced school aid, leading to predictions that districts would raise property taxes. He blamed the teachers’ union for any increases and proposed capping property tax increases. Now he is using that cap as leverage for a package of bills, which has met union opposition, to help towns and school districts control spending.
Smart politics for sure, but that doesn’t necessarily lead to good policy. Even if they slap the word bipartisan on it for the seal of approval.