Governor Daugaard offered some great ideas for Washington DC in his latest op-ed printed in the Yankton Press and Dakotan.
First, in most states, the governor has the power of the line-item veto of appropriations. If he or she doesn?t want a certain appropriation of money to be spent, the governor can veto one or more lines of the appropriation bill ? without vetoing the entire bill. Those particular items of appropriation cannot then be spent unless two-thirds of the House and Senate override that line-item spending veto. Even the mere existence of that power holds down spending at the state level. The president, no matter to which political party he or she belongs, should have that same power.
Daugaard has shown himself to be a politician who isn’t afraid to make some tough decisions. He is an easy person for many to admire because he accepts that some will be upset with his decisions. No one wants to be the politician who has to make difficult budget cuts. It’s much easier to spend and be generous with tax payer dollars. But like most elected officials, he didn’t get to choose the circumstances surrounding his term. The choices he and the legislature made last session will serve South Dakota well in the long run and ensure that the essential needs of our society continue to be met.
As a second suggestion, prohibit bills that deal with multiple subjects. In most states, bills must be concerned with only one subject. In South Dakota, our constitution says it this way: “No law shall embrace more than one subject, which shall be expressed in its title.” Those bills are discussed and debated, and passed or defeated, based on the merits of the one-subject proposal.
When I read his suggestions to our leaders in Washington DC, I was reminded how good we have it in South Dakota. We have had responsible leadership that does not spend more money than we have, and in tough economic times they have had the courage to make cuts that require our state to continue to move forward on solid financial ground. We don’t tax and spend or borrow and spend. We balance our budget.
When Dennis Daugaard speaks I listen, because I believe him to be a genuine and honest man who has earned my support.