Edwards appears to have two cards to play to entice enough Republicans to support higher taxes.Maybe some day in the future we can have a discussion about how TOPS is not the ideal way to make college affordable and accessible to people. But, for now, it (sort of) does that and we would like to be able to fund it. And now we're more likely to get some help from House Republicans who also want it funded.
One is that the budget approved by the House shorted the Taylor Opportunity Program for Students by $72 million — and fully funding TOPS appears to be an absolute must for House Republicans because the program mainly benefits middle- and upper-income taxpayers who want to keep the program.
The other card is one all governors play: agreeing to provide money for a road, a sewer system, a ballfield and the like to a legislator in exchange for a vote to raise taxes.
At least they say that's what they want anyway. Earlier they were willing to close hospitals in order to do it. Now they don't have that option anymore. So, good job.