Taking into account that Gov. Jodi Rell is a Republican, it's strange that she's taking aim at a Bristol technical school championed by GOP stalwarts.
There are no shortage of state institutions in Democratic districts, after all, and the logic of the proposed closure of the Bristol Technical Education Center is shaky at best. The $2 million savings Rell anticipates almost certainly don't exist.
The school is located in state Rep. Bill Hamzy's 78th District. Hamzy, a former state GOP chairman, is an increasingly respected figure within state Republican circles who doesn't appear to have any personal conflicts with Rell.
He's also a big backer of the school.
And the head of the state's technical high school committee is yet another Republican with ties to Rell: Bristol's Beverly Bobroske. She's also a strong supporter of the school.
Throw in the insistence by the Greater Bristol Chamber of Commerce and a host of businesses throughout the region that hire the school's graduates and the political logic of targeting it gets even more odd.
The school has bipartisan backing, to be sure. Democrats say they love it, too, and have shown over the years that they mean it.
So what's the deal with it? The only critics of the place only argue that if something has to close to save painful cuts somewhere else, then shut it down.
But if there are no real savings from closure and political powerbrokers on both sides of the aisle want it to stay open, what's really going on?
It's hard to believe that Rell would, in the end, stick it to the Republican lawmaker who represents the school and shutter a school whose overseer is one of her GOP allies. That's just not how politics works.
Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org