The Spectacle Blog

John Lynch’s B

By on 10.20.06 | 11:42AM

NH Gov. John Lynch received a B in the Cato Institute's latest governor's rankings. He must've been graded on a curve. Lynch was praised for opposing a sales or income tax. Well, no one can get elected governor in NH without making that pledge, so no points are earned there. The question is what has he done as governor to prevent a sales or income tax from being implemented. The answer is: Nothing.

The big budget issue in New Hampshire is education funding. The Supreme Court has ordered the state to define "adequate education" and pay for ALL of it. New Hampshire would be the only state in the nation that relies on state rather than local funds to pay for public education. For his entire first term Lynch embraced the court's ruling, obliquely, but he embraced it. And he worked against attempts to overturn the ruling by constitutional amendment.

Lynch has now said he might support a constitutional amendment. But he unquestionably supports raising education spending to unprecedented and unnecessary levels that likely will require large tax increases. And he has fought attempts to streamline the state's largest department, reform the welfare bureaucracy and raise more money for state parks by privatizing some operations.

He needlessly raised the cigarette tax while blocking efforts to trim spending so that the tax would not be needed.

That gets a B from Cato? Maybe Granite Staters just expect a lot more frugality than the Cato guys do.

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