The Columbus Dispatch is reporting that a deal has been struck between the Governor, Speaker Budish, and the GOP Senate leadership.? The legislation should be passed this afternoon:

The deal would close the budget hole by delaying this year’s 4.2 percent income-tax cut. The plan also will include a revamping of Ohio’s 132-year-old public construction laws on a limited basis and will make it easy for schools to get a waiver to avoid having to offer all-day kindergarten starting next school year.

The GOP wanted to simply delay the all-day kindergarten entirely for a year.? The legislation that enacted universal all-day kindergarten already had language in it to authorize waivers for schools who lack the funds and/or facilities to provide it next school year.? This is pretty much a win for Strickland.

Strickland’s public construction law proposal, which Democratic Speaker Budish stripped due to opposition by labor unions and minority contractors, that the Senate GOP wanted to fully implement will instead be tried on a limited pilot program basis on three upcoming university construction projects.

The deal will also fully implement Strickland’s proposal to entirely freeze the last phase of the Republican income tax cuts passed in 2005 with no plan to pay for it.

Oh, and the deal also includes that only a minimum number of Republican Senators will actually have to vote for it.? But because that’s part of the deal negotiated by the Republican leadership, that’s not going to give them much cover with their base, is it, Kyle Sisk?

The simple facts are these:

*The Ohio GOP Senate majority had one of two ways to go…come up with an alternative solution that they could provide 17 votes for and put the ball in Strickland and Budish’s court (also known in some circles as “leading”) OR provide 5 votes and give Capri, Budish & Strickland exactly what they wanted (I believe my boys Merriam & Webster would define this loosely as “following”).

*By going the 5 vote route today the victory purely goes to Strickland.? There is no other way to look at it.? For anyone with half a brain today…this situation…was not a Strickland vs the Ohio GOP Senate thing.? This was a lot bigger than that.? This was a Strickland & Kasich thing.? This was a Strickland & who controls the Apportionment Board thing.? Strickland was in a bad spot.? Anytime Strickland is in a bad spot between now & 11/4/10 that is a good thing for Kasich, Taylor & Husted.? Anytime Strickland gets out of bad spots that is a good thing for Strickland and a bad thing for Kasich, Taylor & Husted.

The GOP had a chance to keep Strickland in a pinch and instead they opted to give him a pass.

Today a “W” goes in Strickland’s column.? Hopefully this doesn’t become a pattern.? If it does then watch as the Strickland/Szollosi or Strickland/Goyal ticket starts another chapter of dem dominance which will last until at least 2030.

And let’s not forget that just 24 hours earlier Sisk wrote about Strickland’s threat to call a special legislative over Christmas if the GOP-led Senate did not get this matter resolved:

If Strickland’s bully tactics get rewarded by “The Gang of Five” and the “I’m going to steal Christmas if you don’t capitulate to my demands” maneuver works then the Ohio GOP Senate Caucus is basically telling the world they are a bunch of eunuchs.

At least Senate President Bill Harris can hit those high notes when he goes caroling.

Merry Christmas, Kyle.

Ted Strickland for Governor ’10.