Tuesday, January 06, 2009

An admiring look at Speaker Hackney

Governing magazine, a monthly publication in Washington, D.C. written for state and local officials, usually writes about issues, trends and problems state and local governments face. A notable exception is its current issue, which includes an admiring portrait of N.C. Speaker of the House Joe Hackney, D-Orange, who will be serving his 15th term when the General Assembly convenes Jan. 28. The profile, written by Alan Greenblatt, is in several ways pretty perceptive about the way Hackney works. He's a good listener. He's hard to read. He has opened the House to more input from Republicans. And while he has not pushed a broad policy agenda in the House, preferring to work on key items he feels strongly about and letting other issues rise or fall on their merits, he has also quietly seen to it that bills he thought would not be good public policy have gone to committees where they would not emerge. Here's a link to the article, headlined, "Reformer in Power."

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The most in-depth and penetrating look at Speaker Hackney I've ever read. Sometimes, Squeaky Clean can be a GOOD thing!

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"Dividing property among people who don't trust each other — that's 90 percent of what you do when you're in government."

Wow. What a frightening quote, but one that shows how distorted Hackney, the writer of the article, and Jack Betts are.

When did you last read the Declaration of Independence, Jack? The purpose of government is to PROTECT property, not steal gobs of and redistribute it.

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Speaking of distortion, isn't that what you're engaging in? You cited a quote from the story written in Governing magazine -- but the quote isn't from Joe Hackney. It's from Rep. Deborah Ross. I believe she was trying to make a point about the difficulty of working with opposing sides, and Hackney's ability to do so, wasn't she? I don't think many folks will read your interpretation in Ross's remarks in Allen Greenblatt's story.

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