Spin Control

McKenna camp: It's not a budget, it's a white paper

OLYMPIA -- Responding to a shot from Gov. Chris Gregoire that she doesn't need a "monkey wrench" thrown into budget negotiations, a campaign spokesman for Rob McKenna said the GOP candidate won't be releasing a full-blown budget on Monday.

Rather, it will be a statement of principles that a McKenna adminstration would use when compiling a sustainable budget.

The campaign announced this morning McKenna would hold a press conference Monday to announce a "budget policy paper". Asked about the impact that would have on ongoing talks to close the current budget shortfall -- something that's consumed a special session in December, the 60-day regular session and nearly two-thirds of the current special session -- Gregoire said she didn't know what McKenna was planning, but a new budget proposal wouldn't be helpful.

"I don't need a sixth budget proposal," she said. "I don't need somebody external...to throw a monkey wringe into" negotiations.

Charles McCray III, campaign spokesman for McKenna, said the budget proposal will be the latest in a serious of white papers that provide "guiding principles to push us in the direction of sustainability" on state spending, not a full-blown spending plan.

"He's not inserting himself into negotiations," McCray said.

As for the timing of the press conference, McCray said that was when it "fit on the calendar." It wouldn't be a problem, McCray added, "if they had done their job during the regular session."




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