It's revealing that Catholic governors Sam Brownback, R-Kan., and Martin O'Malley, D-Md., have taken markedly different approaches to the state budget process. As is typical for Republicans, Gov. Brownback is a strong advocate for tax cuts. Gov. O'Malley favors tax increases. The New York Times story today offers an interesting look at each approach to state budgeting.
Here's an excerpt of Gov. O'Malley's recent speech to the mayors of Maryland towns:
"Without any anger, and without any meanness, and without any fear, let's ask one another in these critical months ahead and years ahead: how much less do we think would be good for our state?" Mr. O'Malley asked. "How much less do we think would be good for our country? How much less education would be good for our children? How many fewer college degrees would make our state or our country more competitive?
"How much less research and development would be good for the innovation economy that we have an obligation and a responsibility, a duty and an imperative, to embrace? How many fewer hungry Maryland kids can we afford to feed? Progress is a choice: we can decide whether to make the tough choices necessary to invest in our shared future and move forward together. Or we can be the first generation of Marylanders to give our children a lesser quality of life with fewer opportunities."
Here's Gov. Brownback:
"My viewpoint, and the viewpoint of the majority of the Legislature, was we've got to change our tax policy to attract more people and attract more businesses," Mr. Brownback said in a telephone interview. "We're just tired of losing in our league -- I consider the surrounding states as our league -- and we want to start gaining."
Whose approach is authentically Catholic?
(Hint: It's obvious.)