New inaugurated California Governor Jerry Brown wasted no time putting on the Legislative table a proposed state budget he said would require sacrifice from every part of the state. Now we know how he was able to get this budget prepared so fast—there are no good options left for California so it’s pretty much the same deep spending cuts former Governor Schwarzenegger proposed last year that the Legislative leaders declared dead on arrival plus the same extension of temporary tax increases the voters rejected in 2009 together.
The only thing different is Jerry Brown is a democrat and the voters chose him over Meg Whitman. So the Democrats in the Legislature are in a political as well as a fiscal bind. Jerry is on their team so DOA is not going to cut it as a response this time around and every vote will count to get the 2/3 needed to put the tax measures back on the ballot. So trying to make nice with Republicans is necessary.
The Republicans can just say no to putting the tax measures on the ballot and risk legislative gymnastics to configure the measure to require only a simple majority. Or the Republicans can agree to let the public decide on the tax questions assuming the same “NO” the public said last time and demand even deeper cuts as the price for doing so.
Either way it’s going to be a food fight.