Leave the ‘Gang of Five’ alone

Published 12:10 am Saturday, June 11, 2011

On Friday an aggregation of around 130 left-wing groups announced it was “targeting five North Carolina legislators with mailers and meetings in their home districts.”
The officials in the coalition’s sights are: Rep. Tim Spear, D-Washington; Rep. Bill Owens, D-Pasquotank; Rep. Dewey Hill, D-Columbus; Rep. William Brisson, D-Bladen; and Rep. James Crawford, D-Granville.
The coalition has sent 8,000 postcards to these lawmakers.
The apparent goal of Together NC’s collective efforts is to pressure the five lawmakers – all Democrats – into sustaining Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue’s apparently inevitable veto of the roughly $19.7 billion state budget approved by the Republican-led General Assembly.
The numbers were reported by The Associated Press: The two-year state budget does a lot of unfortunate things to education, among them requiring already cash-strapped local school districts to come up with $124.2 million in savings on their own and knocking down by 15 percent, or $59.5 million, funding for school systems’ lowest-paid employees – secretaries, janitors and others.
But this budget isn’t as punitive to education as its draft predecessor. In fact, this budget funds an additional 1,124 teachers, AP reported.
The liberal coalition that’s going after the so-called Gang of Five should take into account the art of compromise, especially when statesmanlike solutions are in short supply.