Gov. Brown on CNN: On Obama, the budget, and Gov. Christie

Gov makes case for Prop. 30 and Obama

by Brian Leubitz

Governor Brown was kind of busy last week. You know, with the whole budget thing. So today he spoke with Candy Crowley on CNN, who apparently hasn’t taken the time to figure out what is going on with the budget.

First on Obama, Brown said that the “contrast and the difference is reasonably clear. Romney almostreminds me of Thomas Dewey … who symbolizes the moneyed East. … Obama represents the common man.”

With taxes such an issue, especially for the wealthiest Americans, Brown makes a valuable point. Romney has argued for more and more tax cuts on the rich, despite the fact that the wealthiest in America have doubled their share of income. And Brown has a history with jobs, and recognizes that Obama’s plan for jobs is more substantive to “build the stuff that makes America.”

He also said that the “Republicans should get out of the way and let the stimulus work.”

Meanwhile, when the subject drifted to the budget, Crowley seemed completely at sea. She knew these facts: 1) Brown is asking for tax hikes and 2) California is in debt.

Brown responded to the first question (why is California, a relatively high tax state asking for more money) by noting some of California’s successes in venture capital and job creation and the vast cuts he has made. Crowley responded to that by asking the “then why are you in debt?” with a seemingly gotcha look.

Had she done a bit of research, she might have figured out that the previous governor rode into office on tax cuts and then never bothered to pay for them. Brown noted that fact, but Crowley was soon off following another dramatic story. That would be Brown’s challenge of Gov. Christie. I’ll let you watch the video for that.  The whole video is pretty short and definitely worth the few minutes.

As an aside, what he didn’t mention and what is frequently ignored, especially by national commentary, is the two Californias. Coastal California is a wealthy area with relatively low unemployment. On the other hand, once you head east a bit, especially into the Central Valley, you find a very different community. Like the nation, the Coast subsidizes these poorer areas, tax money generally flows inland. And ironically enough, many of these areas vote heavily in favor of the devotees of Norquist. But we still have a lot to do to repair the economy of the agricultural heart of the state.

That being said, how much longer our schools can continue to absorb these cuts before they completely collapse is anybody’s guess. Per pupil spending is among the lowest in the nation while our prison spending continues to rise. But always the call is for more cuts…