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Whitmer says it’s not too late to restore vetoes

Flickr User Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan

Governor Gretchen Whitmer continues to defend line item vetoes in budgets she otherwise approved last week.

Whitmer also says it’s not too late to restore some of the spending.

Cuts to human services as well as the Pure Michigan tourism promotion program are unpopular with Republicans and Democrats alike. The governor says her calls were tough, but necessary. She also says she’d prefer a more bipartisan approach.

“I think this is an unprecedented time. It’s unfortunate. It’s not good for anyone.”

The state’s fiscal year has just begun. And Whitmer says she’s willing to bargain to restore some spending, but she’s also looking for new money for roads. She’s proposed a fuel tax increase to pay for that. Republicans say Whitmer’s trying to hold other programs hostage to get her tax hike.

The governor also said, in an op-ed published in The Detroit Free Press, that many of her 147 line item vetoes were payments that benefitted vendors and lobbyists, but not taxpayers.

Rick Pluta is the Capitol Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He is heard daily on WCMU's Morning Edition and All Things Considered.