Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Trip Down Memory Lane for Governor Barbour


Remember when you believed that it was just a horrible, terrible, UNCONSTITUTIONAL thing for anyone but the LEGISLATURE to appropriate and authorize the expenditure 0f State Funds?

Remember when you sued the Partnership for a Healthy Mississippi because a Chancery Court directed funds from the tobacco settlement to fund efforts to curb or eliminate teen smoking?

Remember what you won in the Supreme Court? The Partnership for a Healthy Mississippi v. State of Mississippi, by and Through Governor Haley Barbour, 958 So. 2d 790, 812 (Miss. 2007). It was a ruling that said this:

¶ 77. With this being said, we note the obvious. The Legislature holds the purse strings. To illustrate this point, we have previously stated:

Under all constitutional governments recognizing three distinct and independent magistracies, the control of the purse strings of government is a legislative function; indeed, it is the supreme legislative prerogative, indispensable to the independence and integrity of the legislature, and not to be surrendered or abridged, save by the constitution itself, without disturbing the balance of the system and endangering the liberties of the people. The right of the legislature to control the public treasury, to determine the sources from which the public revenues shall be derived and the objects upon which they shall be expended, to dictate the time, the manner, and the means both of their collection and disbursement is firmly and inexpugnably established in our political system.

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¶ 79. Before money can come out of the state treasury, such money must be appropriated by the Legislature.

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