More of the Same in California

California voters took the therapeutic step of rejecting a series of ballot measures yesterday designed to raise taxes and control spending. In doing so, voters ...
by | May 20, 2009

California voters took the therapeutic step of rejecting a series of ballot measures yesterday designed to raise taxes and control spending. In doing so, voters sent a message that they're tired of political squabbling and painful budget choices. They also guaranteed that lawmakers will engage in more political squabbling and will be forced to make more painful budget choices.

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

California voters soundly rejected a package of ballot measures Tuesday that would have reduced the state's projected budget deficit of $21.3 billion to something slightly less overwhelming: $15.4 billion.

The defeat of the measures means that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the state Legislature will have to consider deeper cuts to education, public safety, and health and human services, officials have said.

While California's budget situation is back where it started, the votes yesterday did help clarify Schwarzenegger's legacy. Some people will view the governor's tenure as a failure. Others will view him as someone who fought the good fights, had all of the right instincts, but who was stymied by a hopelessly fractured political system and constitutional rules that make good governance impossible.

It's hard to imagine anyone, however, judging his governorship to be a success.

Josh Goodman
Josh Goodman  |  Former Staff Writer
mailbox@governing.com  | 

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