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House Republicans say there’s a problem with the budget, and Cole Wist isn’t happy about it

Blog, Colorado Legislature, Uncategorized Comments Off 187

They might not have the votes to do anything about it, but Colorado House Republicans say the state budget doesn’t need new taxes but rather new thinking in a new video.

(Stop staring at us, Cole Wist; you’re freaking me out.)

Last week the Senate Democrats and Republicans put out a podcast and a video, respectively, to deliver unfiltered messages to their followers. Friday the House Republicans take their shot.

Minority Leader Patrick Neville of Castle Rock explained the state has the largest budget ever this year, $26.8 billion, which is about $1.5 billion more than last year. Yet lawmakers could still ask voters to approve a 21 percent hike in the state sales tax in November to pay for transportation.

“There’s a serious problem,” Neville says.

Wist, the assistant minority leader from Centennial, let’s us know that from the start. As Neville speaks, the genuinely nice guy Wist broods the way a father hears an explanation of a dented fender.

“This is the most important thing we do at the Capitol,” he says into the camera.

The weekly video was shot by caucus communications pro Joel Malecka at what Neville called the “Republican retreat.” Maybe the Iraq veteran should have called it a retrenchment, or, better yet, a surge.

The Republicans are in a deep minority in the House, 37-28, so they could have called it a hunker-down. I want credit for that if they call it a hunker-down next year.

“We owe it to you, the taxpayers to make sure that the process is working and find the waste we all know exists in the budget,” Wist continued, “and find ways  to make government accountable, and that we plan for the future.

“And our budget process simply isn’t doing that. It’s time for us to bring some new thinking.”

So how did the House Republicans measure up against Senate Republican professor-mustache Kevin Grantham’s white-board lecture and Democrats’ smooth jazz meets coffee chat podcast with Sen. Dominick Moreno?

Fingers crossed that House Speaker Crisanta Duran spits some rhymes into a “Hamilton”-style rap. (Budget rhymes with nudge it and fudge it, and this session’s go-to debate phrase, “skin in the game,” is a helluva good head start.)

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