Feb. 11, 2008
Story and pix By Ken Krayeske • 6:40 PM EST
I couldn't resist.
What if Sen. John McCain chose M. Jodi Rell as a running mate? A political junkie friend suggested this plausibility to me the other night.
It makes sense. She's got stratospheric approval ratings, and her appearance on the ticket could combat the Republican stereotype of being an all-white men's club, and go towards defeating whatever diversity the Democratic ticket is sure to toss out there.
But back here in Connecticut, we're wise to her shenanigans. I hope. I think. Her recent proposal to splinter ConnDOT doesn't make much sense. But I'll report more on that later.
The billboard ban comes at an inopportune moment for her. At the same time she declared billboards as eyesores, her 10-foot tall face was popping up around major interstates in Connecticut promoting her One Thing energy efficiency initiative.
Yet the biggest gaffe of the week, month, year, term for me was her reversal on her promise to shut down the Connecticut Juvenile Training School (aka CJTS). Hartford Courant ace reporter Colin Poitras slogged through this broken promise Sunday, Feb. 10:
"Nearly three years after pledging to close the troubled Connecticut Juvenile Training School for boys in Middletown, Gov. M. Jodi Rell is not only keeping the high-security facility open, but is more than doubling the number of children there.
Rell has included $8 million in her proposed mid-term budget to expand the school's programs to handle an additional 120 children.
Robert Genuario, Rell's budget czar, said the additional beds are needed to handle an anticipated surge in the state's juvenile population when a new law raising the maximum juvenile age from 15 to 17 takes effect in 2010. The 16- and 17-year-olds who get into trouble now are processed in adult courts, prisons and jails."
Yeah, so, that great governor there is now presiding over the largest prison population in state history, with no plans to slow it down. I suppose we should be overjoyed that she isn't sending our prisoners to Virginia.
What will it take for Connecticut to wake up and smell the coffee? And just when I think, yeah, a vice presidential Rell would make us rid of her, I shudder at the thought of Michael Fedele for another six or more years.
I suppose we get the leadership we deserve. Or something like that.