Legislative Counsel: Arnold’s Vetoes Are Unconstitutional

At least that’s how the LA Times is reporting it:

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger exceeded his constitutional powers by slashing spending for several programs as part of an effort to cut $500 million out of California’s deficit-plagued budget, according to an opinion today by the Legislature’s legal counsel.

Schwarzenegger drew fire from Democrats last week after he used his “line-item veto” authority to cut spending for health, welfare and other programs to help fill the state’s $26-billion deficit hole.

There’s nothing up on the LAO’s website yet, (UPDATE: that’s because it is the legislative counsel that gave the opinion – more below) but this would be a major blow to the governor’s effort to violate the law and the constitution in order to push through his shock doctrine style attack on the services Californians need to survive and thrive.

Among the many impacts of the budget cuts are that domestic violence shelters around the the state are struggling to stay open, and some can’t make it:

In Ventura County, every long-term shelter has been shut down after Governor Schwarzenegger slashed the state budget.

Now, there is great concern that budget cuts may force abused women and children out of their safe environments and possibly right back into the arms of their abuser.

Interface Children Family Services in Ventura County had to shut the doors of all five of their transitional homes or shelters for domestic violence victims.

That’s what Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has violated the constitution to accomplish.

UPDATE by Robert: The Legislative Counsel’s opinion can be found here.

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