A quick if obvious reminder to Democratic budget negotiators in Olympia that despite the endless string of legislative deadlines, we already have a 2011-2013 budget in place. So there's no rush to cave on your principles in order to appease the bullies and traitors across the aisle.

Sure, thanks to recent revenue forecasts, the state is currently projected to run out of cash before the budget ends in June, 2013. But not long before. Maybe May of next year. So it's not like we're facing an imminent government shutdown if a deal isn't struck. There's no emergency.

Yes, the longer we wait, the harder it is to close the gap, but while it may not be the optimal way to deal with the problem, there are a lot of things Governor Gregoire can do unilaterally to cut spending, and who knows? Maybe with the economy recovering, revenues will pick up faster than expected, erasing the shortfall on its own?

The point is, Senate Republicans and the three ex-Democratic Benedict Arnolds don't have you over a barrel. Dems control the House and the governor's mansion. Act like it.