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I give Governor Perdue and her staff an A+ on message management.

They pulled off a neat three-step strategy:

  1. Spend weeks warning people how awful the budget cuts are going to be.
  2. Then devote her State of the State speech – and the next week’s media events – to saying education would get more money.
  3. Finish by delivering the cuts, tempered by raising sin taxes, which probably are a political winner.

Whatever happens from now on, she has seized her political high ground. And she can blame the legislature for anything bad.

The response of GOP Chairman Linda Daves was nothing if not stunning for its hypocrisy.

Davis simultaneously criticized Perdue both for spending too much money and not spending enough money. She criticized using stimulus money in the budget, taking a cue from that visionary governor of South Carolina, Mark Sanford. Then she criticized not spending more on mental health and probations.

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