Skip to comments.Tim Cahill touts fiscal restraint in Massachusetts
Posted on 04/28/2010 9:09:25 AM PDT by Maelstorm
State Treasurer Tim Cahill said Thursday he would not leave anything off the table in potential budget cuts if elected governor, and that he would lay off state workers though he cant say who or how many positions hed cut until he gets into office.
The independent candidate also said that he supports most of the just-passed House casino bill and thinks its outline makes sense financially, but he has been too busy campaigning to read the legislation.
Asked why he has yet to read it, Cahill said, Im running a campaign, and I just havent had time to sit down and plow through it all.
I havent had time to read through the whole bill. Ive summarized it. Ive looked at the basic overall premise of it. If I was governor, before I would sign it, or whether or not I would sign it, I would read it, Cahill said in a meeting with GateHouse Media reporters and editors.
In March, Cahill appeared on national television and criticized Massachusetts health-care legislation, saying it has nearly bankrupted the state. Asked Thursday why he never spoke up about the Massachusetts bill when it was being debated in 2006, he said he was never asked.
They promised us it was going to bring down costs, he said, referring to then-Gov. Mitt Romney and other political leaders who crafted the state health-care law. As treasurer, maybe I should have questioned it more, but I wasnt at the table, I wasnt asked to comment on it, and what Ive seen over the last four years has frightened me, in terms of what the costs are.
The longtime Democrat, who left the party last July, said he would consider cutting spending on local aid, education, health care and transportation, before raising taxes.
None of those are easy decisions, but those decisions would have to be made, and would have to be made from the top down, looking at spending all across the aisles, said Cahill, adding that cities and towns would have to trim their spending, too, including through layoffs, though he would prefer to cut at the state level first.
We would initially have to lay off a certain amount of employees. I cant say exactly where they are until I get control of the budget, Cahill said. Pressed for more specifics, Cahill said he would have to examine the personnel numbers in various departments and see where cuts could be made with the least negative impact.
I wouldnt call for across-the-board layoffs until I know exactly where there are employees that may be not necessary. What departments have grown dramatically since this governor took office or in the last 15 or 20 years? Those analyses I dont have access to all of that information right now, and we dont know what kind of revenues well have in 2011, said Cahill, who was elected state treasurer in 2002. You cant make specific decisions until you know what youre in there.
Asked why he supported Deval Patrick in 2006 but is campaigning to unseat him now, Cahill said as a Democrat, I felt he was the best Democrat.
Whats changed dramatically is the way hes handled this recession the fact that hes been unwilling to spend less money and lead us through this recession in a way that I think has been positive. For the last two years, and Ive been vocal both internally and externally about spending and about taxes, and they just havent listened to me or to anyone else, Cahill said.
The surpluses of 2006 are gone, Cahill said, and hes not changed his style at all to address the issues of lower taxation and trying to get the private sector to work. So I feel I can do a better job.
He said the Treasury Department has approximately eight to 10 fewer employees than when he took office, its budget is about 20 percent less, and that there are fewer employees at the Lottery than at its high-water mark in 2002.
We have played our share. We did not raise salaries and raise employees when times were good, so we didnt have to really lay people off; weve just not filled positions that we didnt feel we needed, Cahill said. He contrasted his department with state government as a whole, saying there are about 8,000 more state employees now than in 2007.
Cahill made the distinction that as governor he would look closely at departments spending, but make local aid cuts across the board.
He said not funding the Quinn Bill was not a good idea, and that he would have cut local aid instead. If I had to make a $50 million cut, I would have made a $50 million local aid cut, so that would be spread over 351 cities and towns, he said.
Fielding questions on a wide range of topics, Cahill said he supports bringing the sales tax back down to its previous level of 5 percent, and said the affordable housing bill Chapter 40B should not be repealed: I think the law can be fixed without throwing it all out.
Cahill is against the transgender rights bill, sponsored in the Senate by Richard Tisei, the GOP nominee for lieutenant governor, because he feels transgendered persons are not a class of people facing discrimination.
He said he drove a Jeep to the meeting, quipping, Im not buying a truck.
Baker’s running mate Tessei is also openly gay, which is unusual for a “republican.”
Baker is a RINO-Democrat of the Romney-type.
Baker was chosen, not elected.
Cahill is far more conservative.
Gotta agree. I’m starting to consider voting for Tim Cahill myself. At least he sounds like a fiscal conservative, which is what this state needs. I like him talking about cuts to gov’t.
He also has come out firmly against the stupid Transgendered rights bill. He isn’t as conservative as I’d like but he clearly isn’t an activist and Charlie Baker has a liberal activist as his running mate. Tim Cahill has a solid conservative as his running mate which means after Cahill Mass could get an even better governor rather than some pansy ass fairy gay activist.
Well I heard Cahill on the radio this morning and he made some ridiculous statement about unions being good for the state.
As a NH resident, but a MA income tax payer and subject to taxation without representation, I do not believe a Democrat can ever change their spots.
I am not a Baker supporter, but I believe he is better from my wallet than a Democrat who could not beat the incumbent in a primary.
I’m just worried Cahill and Baker will split the vote and that idiot Patrick will get in again!
Whatever. The upshot from this whole deal is that Obama’s butt-buddy Deval Patrick could very waltz into a second term because of Cahill and Baker splitting the opposition vote.
Better the GOP go down. Cahill has enough strength that I believe he will defeat Patrick and Baker. I just want the old insider soft Republican establishment to die and the only way it will die is to stop feeding it. Tim Cahill may not be all I’d like but giving both the Democrats and Republicans a defeat would be a delight.
Timmy is tacking right but will govern left. Its in his roots. My current thinking is to vote Baker for his fiscally conservative views, and take Loscocco (Cahill’s “running mate”). Although gov candidates select a “running mate” LG, they are totally separate offices on the ballot. Cahill is a plant to elect Deville, but we can use his improved LG.
My mother and I were at a fundraiser for Tisei’s replacement. We voiced our displeasure with him on the tranny bill. Tiesi completely disregarded my mother’s objection to a man in a dress in the Ladies’ Room effectively making women “second class citizens”. I also wrote a column about it. It got “spiked”! I’ve been writing “A Little to the Right, Please” for over ten years.
A Baker-Tisei (by the way Tisei does not have enough signatures to get on the ballot) defeat will assure that Jennifer Nassour gets the boot from MASSGOP. She and Tisei go hand in hand on slapping the Traditional Values voting block in the face. But she’ll get her photo on the cover of Bay Windows, and that’s what’s important to her.
I don’t see it. I don’t have a problem with Cahill, personally. I like him too. However, the worst case scenario is having the Obamabot Deval Patrick re-elected. You can’t expect to split the opposition vote against a Democrat and expect to win, even if Patrick’s approval ratings are circling the toilet.
Go Cahill !
Better to re-elect Coupe than elect Baker. Baker is horrific.
Go Tim go!
I’m worried that Patrick and Cahill will split the anti-Baker vote and Baker will get in.