With talk of veto, impeachment and adjournment in the air, it must be hard to think about anything else in Augusta.

But lawmakers should focus for just another day, and pass some important legislation.

The most important is the budget, which has been vetoed by the governor and needs two-thirds support of all present members in both houses to become law.

Without that vote, the government would shut down. That’s what Gov. LePage wants lawmakers to do, and they are being pressured by right-leaning lobbying groups to sustain his veto. He even submitted an insult-peppered veto message Monday that read more like a campaign brochure than an official communication.

But shutting down the government would be a profoundly irresponsible act, using people’s livelihoods to gain political leverage, and this Legislature has not shown itself to be that irresponsible.

This spending plan was built on bipartisan compromise, which was made more difficult by the governor’s lack of participation in the budget process.

Another responsible move would be sending bond issues to the voters in the next election. These bills are typically left to the last minute of the legislative session and get much less attention than other less important measures. This year, there is even more noise than usual to drown out the arguments.

The Appropriations Committee recommended $100 million in borrowing, which will go before the House and Senate on Tuesday. That’s not anywhere near enough to meet all the state’s capital investment needs, but lawmakers should not do any less.

The borrowing requests are broken into two separate bills: one calling for $85 million in transportation improvements, and the other calling for $15 million for affordable housing for seniors. Both would address deep needs.

An independent study by a national research group found Maine’s roads and bridges to be among the worst in the country. Our rural roads were ranked eighth worst in the nation and our bridges were the ninth worst. Another year without taking action would let them crumble even further. It would be irresponsible to let that happen.

Maine needs to make other investments. We have an estimated shortfall of 9,000 units of affordable housing units for senior citizens. As a result, many people are living in inadequate housing, often old family homes that they can no longer afford to heat adequately or maintain.

The bond would start to fill that gap and put Maine on track to address its demographic challenges. This bond issue is a responsible response to a serious problem.

Maine’s bond rating remains high, and the state has retired enough debt this year to easily accommodate interest payments on this level of borrowing.

Passing the state budget and these bonds would be the responsible thing to do, and lawmakers should not go home until they’ve done it.

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