Looks like we do have regional influence.
From this mornings Union Leader, a Politico story quotes Pete Shumlin the Democrat governor of Vermont…
“My problem is, on the eastern side of me, I’ve got the state of New Hampshire,” he told Politico. “Sarah Palin said that she could do foreign policy because she could see Russia from her house. Well, I’m the first governor in 40 years that can see New Hampshire from my house. So I can do tax policy. And I can tell you, we’ve got no more capacity. They’re killing us.”
Shumlin manages to appear dumb–the Palin quote was Tina Fey on SNL not the Alaska Governor, and smart–"They’re killing us," at the same time.
We are and we will continue to "kill them" along the border as the GOP super majority makes the state even more business friendly. And as long as Vermont persists in their "more government" socially liberal policies–which suck incessantly off a tax cow they have to continually feed–Vermont will remain to the left of New Hampshire (on the map and just about everywhere else) and behind New Hampshire economically.
But it is nice to see the Democrat giving it go. Not sure how long before he realizes he can’t feed his ideology and pretend to be a fiscal conservative at the same time but we can grab some popcorn and watch the experiment unfold. I’m a strong supporter of Vermont’s sovereign right to hold the line on taxes, and for them to try because of New Hampshire–well, it doesn’t get much better than that. It is as if we are projecting economic power throughout the region.
So while we wait for change to come to Vermont, here are a few tidbits that explain some of the disadvantages Vermont has handicapped itself with and why they work to New Hampshire’s growing advantage, a report funded by Vermont to understand what the problem is and how much it is costing them. And more motivation, perhaps, to keep New Hampshire that much further ahead of the rest of New England.
Unintended Consequesnces (pdf report)