Don’t Worry…Poizner’s Got a Plan

Ok, all Californians. The budget crisis is pretty much over. Or it will be as soon as Steve Poizner is sworn into office. Because he has a plan that in no way relies on massive leaps of logic and steadfast faith in a theory of supply-side economics that has been pretty well rejected over the last twenty, and particularly the last two, years.

But in a speech to the Riverside Chamber of Commerce yesterday, Poizner outlined what he’s calling his 10-10-10 plan. The Press-Enterprise got some footage of the speech, but you’ll have to head over there to watch it.

State insurance commissioner and Republican gubernatorial candidate Steve Poizner on Monday proposed a combination of tax cuts and spending reductions as a remedy for California’s budget woes. Poizner told a business audience in Riverside that as governor he would cut corporate, income and sales taxes 10 percent, cut state spending by 10 percent in two years, and build a $10 billion rainy day fund in one term.

The tax cuts will make the state more competitive and encourage taxpayers to stay here, he said. “We’ll never be able to afford anything until we have a healthy economy again,” Poizner said at a lunch held by the Greater Riverside Chambers of Commerce at the Riverside Convention Center. (P-E 11/17/09)

A few points here. First, cutting spending 10%? Really, that’s your goal? Dude, we cut spending by over 30% the last two years, and you want to talk about ten percent? Does that include the money we’ve already cut? And in what dream world does a Republican governor really have simple authority like that. The Democratic majorities in the Legislature aren’t going away anytime soon. And though you could simply blue pencil, that doesn’t exactly engender good relations with the Legislature.

Next, how exactly are you planning to pay for that tax cut you are proposing? A magical money tree? Because that would be great. Otherwise, you are going to need to cut even deeper than the 10% you proposed, as revenue numbers won’t improve much, if at all, over the next 24 months.

And, finally, I will point out that it was San Francisco, yes, that liberal hell-hole that I call home, that got out in front of the rainy day fund in California. Now-Assemblyman Tom Ammiano pushed for the Rainy Day Fund when he was a Supervisor, and the City was able to save hundreds of teachers’ jobs because we did so.

But I guess I shouldn’t worry, because you have a cutesy “10-10-10” name for your “plan.” Everything is going to groovy.