All posts by Bob Brigham

CA-36: Run, Debra Bowen, Run!

As was noted by the the Sacramento Bee’s Capital Alert and the The Oakland Tribune’s Josh Richman, legendary online communicator Debra Bowen took to twitter to say she was “giving serious thought” to running in the special election for the 36th congressional district seat being vacated by Rep. Jane Harman.

And netroots and progressive leaders immediately began signing a petition urging her to run. Calitics readers will recognize many of the names, people like Brian Leubitz  and Robert Cruickshank and David Dayen and Dante Atkins and Matt Lockshin.

Here are the benchmark numbers online:


Janice Hahn: 635 Followers

Debra Bowen: 3,693 Followers


Janice Hahn: 916 “likes”

Debra Bowen: 5,054 “likes” (or loves?)

As Dayen pointed out, about “progressive favorite” Debra Bowen:

She would have the highest name recognition and the most passionate support if she entered the race, without question.

Indeed. If you’re on twitter, you can sign the petition here

Donkey Kong: How Chris Daly Will Haunt David Chiu

Chris Daly: I will haunt youWhile most people were fixated on the “Donkey Kong” mention in last night’s speech by Chris Daly, what about the actual content of the speech? Immediately before Donkey Kong, Daly made his promise to Board President David Chiu:  “I will haunt you. I will politically haunt you for the biggest fumble in history.”

As Daly is termed out this week, can he make good on this promise? The answer is a yes, and big time. For three key reasons.

Chris Daly’s Relationships: If you only read CW Nevius, you might be misinformed enough to come to the conclusion that Daly is a pariah in San Francisco. But in reality, nothing could be further from the truth. Chris Daly is the most accomplished legislator on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors because he knows so many people so well that he can put together big deals, often with strange bedfellows. Tonight is the “roast” of Chris Daly, which will have as many downtown suits as SOMA hipsters. Daly can scroll through his cell phone and identify dozens of people he knows on each side of every issue. On every single issue, Daly can make Chiu’s life miserable, but Daly also has the political instincts to identify the most critical pressure points.

Social Networking: Chris Daly’s Facebook is an active community with 2,562 people that he has repeatedly used to create news that is picked up by the traditional press. Daly’s twitter is only followed by 621 people right now, but that’s mostly because Daly prefers Facebook. While those numbers may not sound huge, scroll through the names and you’ll see a who’s who of influence makers in San Francisco. Daly can change the framing and dynamics of issues before the Board, especially with early messaging. If he bought an ipad, he could easily post from behind the bar. That is some serious haunting potential.

Buck’s Tavern: David Chiu should be haunted by the mere thought of Daly now having a watering hole so close to City Hall. No matter what issue, operatives on the other side of Chiu can stop by and drop info to Daly. The nature of San Francisco’s political fissures means that in any given year, almost everyone in town will have an issue where they disagree with Chiu and agree with Daly. Plus, Daly opened the bar with Ted Strawser, who is a triple-threat with political game, online game, and event organizing mastery. Already, people are gravitating to Bucks as it fills the long vacant role of a City Hall bar. Drinking Liberally has already moved to Bucks — it is rapidly turning into the place to go for politics in San Francisco. Plus, look at the geography. Two short blocks from Van Ness & Market. In District 6, but District 5 begins across the street and District 8 is two blocks away. District 9 starts less than a dozen blocks away and Chiu’s District 3 is three stops away on the Muni underground or a dozen blocks up the hill on Van Ness. Location, location, location. There’s a reason Willie Brown ’99 and Matt Gonzalez ’03 both ran their campaigns out of a building two blocks away.

Those are the three major givens and three huge reasons why Daly can haunt David Chiu. But he could also easily go further. I’d be surprised if Daly didn’t consolidate his new watchdog role into an actual organization. He can raise far more money at the bar then it would cost for him to start a PAC, set up a website, and start building out his list.

Chris Daly can easily haunt David Chiu. And from what I’ve heard, it’s On Like Donkey Kong!

California Democratic Party Fails California & Democrats

In the month of June, with the Constitutional Deadline to pass a budget, the CDP did one move on the budget. And it was pathetic. There was no Theory of Change, no path for what they were doing to result in passing a budget quicker, or passing a more just budget. It was quite honestly one of the most pathetic online moves I have ever seen by a state party — anywhere in the country.

And then they got defensive. They started censoring comments at Calitics, giving a ‘0’ rating to disappear any criticism. They censored, again and again and again and again.

I’m trying to figure out how the California Democratic Party could have failed so completely, I think it might have gone something like this:

California Democrats deserve at least basic competence. There was nothing of the sort with a stone’s throw of this whole fiasco. First, there was the sin of omission, by not engaging in any actions that could have helped pass a just budget. Next, there was this pathetic move, that just made the CDP look incompetent (phone calls to 4 legislators is all they accomplished during the last week before the budget ran out, with half those calls coming from consultants or their mothers?). Third, any preteen can explain to you that trying to censor online just results in more people seeing what is trying to be hid. Forth, they didn’t quickly realize that their move was a blunder of epic proportions and react with something that would have helped.

And this isn’t just about the budget, with the CDP lacking basic competence online, how are they going to help Jerry Brown or Barbara Boxer or Gavin Newsom or Kamala Harris?

California Democrats deserve better.

Chris Kelly Fought MoveOn to Defend Facebook’s Infamous Beacon Program

I believe I used a Prodigy email address to sign an online petition calling on congress to “censure President Clinton and move on” back in 1998. As I’m sure you know, out of those efforts rose the organization MoveOn, which sent emails to my Yahoo account for years and to my gmail for the last six years or so. It has been one of my favorite organizations, through their ups and downs, for a decade.

Which is why I simply can’t fathom the blunder they made yesterday, thrusting themselves into the California Attorney General’s race to fluff former Facebook Chief Privacy Officer (best oxymoron ever) Chris Kelly. In the final days of the campaign, no less.

MoveOn’s fluffing of Kelly began yesterday morning when staffer Marika Shaub posted a link on MoveOn’s FB Group, “Facebook, respect my privacy!” Shaub urged the 180,000 members to share a note from Chris Kelly with all of their Facebook friends and later MoveOn sent an email to an unknown number of members of MoveOn’s giant list with Chris Kelly’s message (I received it twice).

As I long-time Moveon member and devoted supporter, I was shocked that MoveOn’s current leadership seems to have so little understanding of the dynamics and history of the battle for privacy. It was only back in 2007 that MoveOn went to war with Facebook, scoring a major victory for privacy by leading the organizing to shut down the infamous “Beacon” program. MoveOn was attacked repeatedly in the press by…Chris Kelly — who was not defending privacy, but defending Beacon. In fact, Kelly made so much money eroding privacy at Facebook that he’s dumped over $12,000,000 into his attempt to buy the California Democratic Party nomination for Attorney General.

If, like MoveOn apparently, you have forgotten how Chris Kelly fought MoveOn to defend Beacon, follow me after the jump. If you remember the history better than MoveOn, feel free to check out how Chris Kelly’s campaign is already using MoveOn as a validator — against attacks on Beacon, in the LA Times.

Here’s a reminder from The New York Times Chris Kelly fighting MoveOn to defend Beacon:

MoveOn’s demands could be satisfied by making the Beacon feature “opt in.” Right now, users who don’t want the information displayed need to opt out after purchases at each participating external site.

However, Chris Kelly, Facebook’s chief privacy officer, said MoveOn is “misstating the way this process works.”

He said the purchase appears only in the news feeds of confirmed friends and on the individual’s profile (users have control over who can see their profiles), not to the “world.” Mr. Kelly also pointed out that two ways to opt out, at the point of purchase on the external Web site, via a box that pops up, but fades away in under a minute and the next time they sign into their accounts. If users ignore the notification, the purchase information will be displayed, but nothing happens until the user signs in.

Chris Kelly was mocked for this over on ABC News’ site:

The argument made by Facebook in support of this is disingenuous, and uses that old trick I learned in my PR days of isolating one error in the opponent’s claim and using that to dismiss their entire argument. In this case, Chris Kelly, Facebook’s “chief privacy officer” (one of those new corporate titles that’s going to come back and bite companies) told the New York Times that MoveOn is “misstating the way this process works.” In particular, he said, the purchase is only shared with confirmed friends and on the user’s own profile, not to the “world.” At the same time, he does confirm, that if the user ignores the notification and fails to opt out, the purchase information will be automatically displayed.

And this coming from the Chief Privacy Officer of Facebook.

Chris Kelly’s attacks on MoveOn to defend Beacon made the hop across the pond, getting picked up by The Times:

A Facebook spokesperson said that was “misrepresenting how Facebook Beacon works”.

He said: “Information is shared with a small selection of a user’s trusted network of friends, not publicly on the web or with all Facebook users. Users also are given multiple ways to choose not to share information from a participating site, both on that site and on Facebook.”

Earlier this year, Facebook shrugged off privacy fears when Chris Kelly, the group’s chief privacy officer, told The Times: “We have always said that information [submitted by users] may be used to target adverts.”

“Shrugged off privacy fears”?

Of course, Chris Kelly was mocked, MoveOn was right:

So far, about 13,200 out of over 55 million members have joined MoveOn’s protest group and Facebook is standing by the statements of chief privacy officer Chris Kelly, who told The Wall Street Journal that the company has been transparent with users and that it welcomes feedback from those who have concerns. According to the Journal, Kelly acknowledged that the company could change its policies based on customer reactions but that so far he says reaction has been “fairly muted.”

While the Beacon scandal was the most extreme example, the fact of the matter is user privacy was continually eroded at Facebook during the time Chris Kelly was in charge of privacy. Play with this interactive chart, click on the different years to watch what happened to privacy at Facebook.

Chris Kelly got amazing rich eroding privacy at Facebook, which MoveOn honorably fought. Until yesterday, when out of incompetence over the history of their own campaign and cluelessness over progressive politics in the largest state, they came to the aid of Chris Kelly during the final days of his $12 million vanity campaign.

Californians don’t want an Attorney General doing for Justice what Chris Kelly did for privacy. It would be nice if MoveOn were leading the charge against Chris Kelly, instead of giving him cover to defend himself against ads criticizing Chris Kelly for his role in the Beacon scandal…when he fought MoveOn.

End the Draft – John Garamendi Running in CA-03 is for Conservatives

There have been a few voices suggesting California Lt. Governor John Garamendi abandon his bid to replace Liebermanesque Ellen Tauscher and instead run in California’s third congressional district against Dan Lungren.

And if you are a Democrat – especially a Progressive Democrat – that is good news. Strategically, such a move would be counterproductive for Democrats.

It Makes No Sense for California Democrats

The biggest problem in California is the Republican Veto. This means that Democrats may have a majority in the legislature, but not a functioning majority. With the artificial budget control by Republicans, it actually hurts Democrats if a legislator ascends to congress in a Special Election. With state Senator Mark DeSaulnier and Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan both running for Tauscher’s seat, in all likelihood a Democratic legislator will win unless Garamendi runs.

There are two forces at work that make it counterproductive for Democrats to support a legislator in a special election:

  • California law requires a vacancy in the legislature to be filled by a special election which can take as long as five months from the time the vacancy occurs.
  • California law also bases the 2/3 necessary to pass the budget off of the total number of legislative seats, not the total number of legislators serving

Together, these two rules mean that electing a legislator creates a situation where it will take even one more GOP vote to pass a budget. As we see pretty much every year, it is the last vote that is the hardest and requires the most caving by Democratic legislative leadership.

So if Garamendi doesn’t run in the 10th, it actually strengthens the GOP in California who are all but expecting a legislative special election to weaken the Democratic caucus. Unfortunately, it makes sense for them to stall on the budget until the vacancy occurs to force even more cuts to the budget.

And it could get even worse. The last East Bay congressional special election occurred when Ron Dellums resigned from congress in 1997. This set off an infamous series of special elections where there were legislative vacancies for over a year. Absent Garamendi running, the frontrunner is Mark DeSaulnier. If he wins, he would have to give up his senate seat setting up a second special election. Assemblymember Tom Torlakson can’t run, but Assemblymember Joan Buchanan has already indicated a willingness to run for higher office in a special election and if she won, it would set up another special election (and it is doubtful Democrats could hold her seat).

However, if Garamendi were to win it does not strengthen the GOP hand in Sacramento. In fact, since Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger would get to appoint a replacement, it could actually help passing a budget if Schwarzenegger picked a legislative Republican.

In short, the realities of California’s constitution mean we want legislative vacancies on their side of the aisle, not ours. A vacancy on our side dramatically increases the ability of the California Republican Party to hurt California more via budget cuts.

It Makes No Sense for Progressive Democrats

I would have loved a move like this in 2006 and it still would have been good in 2008, but right now we are in an entirely different situation then we were back in the days many of us were fighting to expand the playing field. Back then, it was the traditional dogma we were fighting against, but ironically now some of the strategies we once used have become the dogma which is clouding the judgment of some.

If Garamendi were to run in the third instead of the tenth, it would actually be counterproductive for progressives. The battle is no longer to get in the majority, the battle lines are within our safe majority. It actually helps progressives standing within the caucus more to have Garamendi then it does to have Garamendi and a conservative (DeSaulnier or Buchanan).

But more likely is that Garamendi running in the third would result in a moderate winning in the 10th and Lungren being re-elected. While Garamendi does have name recognition, his entire gubernatorial campaign has raised less than $200,000 under the federal rules he would be operating under. While he would be able to raise enough money for a sprint in a special election, it is unlikely he could raise enough to win as a challenger absent serious national support in a year when the DCCC is playing defense and it makes far more sense for small donors to contribute to senate candidates then try and expand the majority in the House.

Even if Garamendi won in the third, he would be a far better Representative coming from the 10th. Since Democrats lost control of the next redistricting, Garamendi would have to spend all of his time running for re-election while the moderate winner in CA-10 would be free to spend time screwing progressives (the Ellen Tauscher tradition).

The Worst Case Scenario

The best thing for conservatives is for Garmendi to run in the third. This will make it nearly inevitable that the GOP will have a far stronger hand during budget negotiations, ensure Ellen Tauscher is replaced by another moderate, and give Garamendi at best a 50-50 chance of picking up a seat that won’t change anything in DC.

While I’m sure supporters of DeSaulnier will keep pushing this absurd idea, the fact that it is the best case for conservatives might be why Ellen Tauscher thinks DeSaulnier will do such a great job carrying on her work.

Progressives should applaud Lt. Governor Garamendi running in CA-10. It makes it likely that Ellen Tauscher will be replaced with a progressive stalwart and will hopefully prevent the disaster of either of the conservative legislators winning the seat and making things Sacramento even worse.

Tuesday night Matt Lockshin, the internet director for the California Democratic Party put up a poll on the subject:

Hopefully this bad idea will end and we can replace Ellen Tauscher with a progressive.

Republican Lawmakers Lawbreaking

Punishable by two-four years in prison:

Labor and environmental groups have asked California Attorney General Jerry Brown to investigate whether Republican state lawmakers are engaging in illegal vote trading during budget talks.

“It’s a serious question and we’re reviewing the matter carefully,” Brown responded Thursday.

The California Labor Federation, State Building and Construction Trades Council, Sierra Club California and the Planning and Conservation League wrote to Brown on Wednesday – and sent a copy to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, too – citing reports that the Legislature’s GOP leaders are withholding votes on a state budget while attempting to win votes on unrelated matters.


It asserts this violates California Penal Code Section 86, prohibiting lawmakers from giving or promising to give “any official vote in consideration that another Member of the Legislature shall give this vote either upon the same or another question.

Join the Facebook Group to stand with unions and environmentalists in asking that Jerry Brown investigate.

Gavin Newsom Blowing $20,000 a Month on Joe Lieberman’s Consultant

With California’s budget crisis, Gavin Newsom still pays for the DLC consultants while he cuts vital services in San Francisco?

Twenty thousand dollars a month for Garry South? As in that Garry South. As in the open letter not to hire Garry South lead by Calitics?

So who is this man, Garry South?  He may not be the most well-known figure in California politics.  He doesn’t have the name recognition of an Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Darrel Issa, or even a Tom McClintock, but he’s caused more harm to the State Democratic Party than those three could wish for in their grandest dreams.

Twenty thousand dollars a month for this? No wonder Gavin Newsom can’t raise as much cash compared to when he ran for mayor.

Barbara Boxer vs. Arnold Schwarzenegger Latest Poll

Research 2000 for Daily Kos. 1/5-7. Likely voters. MoE +/- 4%

Boxer (D) 49

Schwarzenegger (R) 40

It isn’t likely that there are a pair of socks thick enough to warm Arnold’s cold feet and his 51% unfavorable is only likely to grow as he has joined the Republican legislators in stonewalling a budget. But, the fact that 31% of California Democrats have a favorable view shows how much work the CDP has not done. Hopefully, despite John Burton’s close friendship, the CDP will remedy that number.

As for Boxer, she is under 50% in a head-to-head, but the poll didn’t test her re-elect number. Her net favorable is only two points, which is also a concern. With only 2/3 of Democrats holding a favorable view, she needs to shore up her base. Her best age group is the under 30 crowd with a net +8, but she is nowhere near the range of the Barack Obama youth surge.

I would have also liked to have seen numbers on Steve Poizner and Meg Whitman as they are far more likely to be the nominee. What are you seeing in the numbers.

UPDATE by Dave: Actually, the huge mistake of this poll is not running numbers on the guy who’s going to actually be the Republican nominee, Chuck DeVore.  He just secured the endorsements of practically the entire GOP State Assembly and over half of the GOP partisan officeholders in the state.  And it’s January ’09.  There is no chance that Arnold Schwarzengger, loathed by his base, can beat DeVore in a closed primary.  None.  Ain’t gonna happen.  There’s only one head-to-head worth polling, and that’s Boxer/DeVore.  Poizner and Whitman are running for Governor.  The field is cleared.

John Burton and the California Democratic Party

A couple weeks ago I took John Burton to task for an email that didn’t seem to get it. I didn’t think he looked too good for that email when the California Democratic Party needs to think of ourselves as in the minority until we get a working majority in the legislature.

Seeing as damn near everyone other than bloggers have gone out of their way to endorse Burton, the key is what he wants to do with the CDP as he will be the next former state senator to Chair the Party. I have to say, I like what he said in today’s email (after the jump).

There are many reasons to get active in local party politics.  I am running for Party Chair because I know from years of experience that the Democratic Party of California has been built on both our common values and superior organizing and ingenuity in campaigns.

As Chair, I will ensure that Democrats retain this edge in the rapidly changing world of modern campaigning.  And I will focus on the mission of the state Democratic Party: winning elections, by bringing new people into our party, through a battle of ideas.

I will involve people who strongly embrace the direction and values of the Democratic Party, such as  grassroots activists from both red and blue counties, leaders from our diverse communities of color, LGBT, women, organized labor, persons with disabilities, seniors groups, environmentalists, consumer advocates and party leaders - working with them to make these goals a reality.

My goals as Chair are below.  I hope that I can count on your support to become the next Chair of the California Democratic Party. Please Click Here to Join Our Campaign Today!

Empower the Grassroots.

Elections are not won or lost in Party Headquarters.  It takes the dedication, enthusiasm, and hard work of thousands of leaders and activists in every corner of California to win the battle of ideas.  One of the great lessons of the Obama campaign is that grass roots activists in the Internet age can produce massive voter contact results if they are empowered with training, tools, and enthusiasm.

The Party should assist county committees and grass roots activists to win local elections.  Particularly in red and rural counties where winning local elections is the first step towards developing the kind of infrastructure that can help us convert red areas to blue and develop a strong cadre of future legislative candidates for partisan office.

Register and Communicate with New Voters.

In 2008, Democratic voter registration in California increased dramatically.  We can not waste this opportunity. Legislative districts that were once solidly Republican are now within our grasp.  I will create a party program to maintain frequent contact with the new 2008 registrants to make sure they know we are right on the issues they care about.

The Party must also invest resources in ongoing voter registration throughout the 58 counties so we can win the seats we fell just short in this time, and also challenge Republicans in other districts as well.  With ongoing voter registration, and more contact with the newly registered, we will win elections because we are right on the issues people care about, and we will have the numbers we need to organize and win.  

Prepare for Proposition 11.

Prop 11, the redistricting measure, changes everything.  The Democratic Party must quickly build the infrastructure to fight general elections in a larger number of seats. We must invest in Republican-leaning areas that will become much more competitive when the new lines become effective in 2012.  And we must also invest in areas currently considered safely Democratic that also may become more competitive.

In November we picked up some Assembly seats, but in the coming years we need to strengthen the Democratic Party structures in Republican leaning areas like Assembly Districts 26, 30, 36, 37, 38, 63, 65, Senate Districts 12 and 19 and Congressional Districts 4, 26, 44 and 50.

And we must protect our new incumbent Democrats in tough seats, including Assemblymembers Joan Buchanan, Alyson Huber, Marty Block, and Manuel Perez.

We must also work with our DNC members to ensure the CDP is a full partner with the DNC's 50 State Strategy and benefits from the funding, technology and research that is developed at the national level.

We need to do more than simply investing in campaigns two weeks before the election.  The fight for the future begins today.

Build a DTS voter edge.

In most competitive statewide, Congressional and legislative races in California, the balance of power is in the hands of DTS voters.  So far, we have been successful with many DTS voters because our message is stronger and more relevant to the dreams and hopes of all Californians.  I will lead an effort to compile detailed information on DTS voters so that we can make our message more relevant to their lives than that of the Yacht Party.

Bring Young People into the Party Structure

We need to encourage young people to run for county committee, delegates to the state convention, or other roles in the Party structure.   It is important to make sure that the Democratic Party mentors a new generation of leaders.  I will commit to making that a priority.

Young voters were engaged and active during the Obama campaign like no other time in recent memory.  However, young voters are still regularly ignored by traditional campaigns.  Working to harness new organizing techniques that are already being utilized by Young Democrats around the state, like "Peer to Peer" organizing, the CA Democratic Party can activate young voters to be the margin of victory.

Use New Technology

I've been around long enough to know that those who only want to do things the same-old-way are doomed to failure. The Internet is first and foremost a powerful organizing tool, and if we use it properly can be an important fundraising tool as well.  Technology gives us the tools to organize activists in new and more efficient ways.  Technology gives us the ability to communicate with voters faster, earlier, cheaper and more personally than ever before.

The California Democratic Party can't afford to be a late adopter. We can't be talking about just beginning to harness the power of e-mail when everyone else is talking about adding text messages to their arsenal. We can't be relegated to antiquated web technology and chasing yesterday's online fads.  We must not only keep pace, but also innovate to provide the best possible tools for electoral and policy victory.  After all, this is the 21st century, and this is California, the home of innovation.

Spearhead Party Fundraising.

None of the above can be done without adequate resources.  Every aspect of successful winning campaigns require money, and we, as a Party, will only be as successful as its resources allow.  If we want to build our party for the long term, by training activists, continuous voter registration, online organizing, and increased communication with party members and the general public, especially young voters and the newly registered - we need to have resources.

I have a proven record of raising funds for successful Democratic campaigns.  I understand that Prop. 34 and McCain-Feingold have changed the campaign finance landscape, and I will work to maximize our dollars within the contemporary regulatory framework.  Clearly we must expand the party's fundraising so that we reach out not only to large donors but also to the millions of small donor Democrats who are ready to invest in California's future.

I have a clear plan to provide superior strategy, funding and organization to win elections in California.  I understand that campaigns are changing dramatically as technology, regulations and voter demands continue to reshape how people consume information and what they expect of their leaders.  I believe the state party must be a cutting edge leader to help Democrats win elections and keep California blue forever .

Arnold Schwarzenegger – Assclown of the Year

I know, we aren’t even a full week into 2009 but it is going to be very difficult for anyone to get any dumber than this:

Schwarzenegger to veto budget bills

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will immediately veto the Democratic plan to reduce the budget deficit by $18 billion and urge lawmakers to use his January proposal as a template for implementing midyear cuts, according to Schwarzenegger communications director Matt David.

The move forces leaders to start over in their efforts to close a budget deficit estimated at $40 billion over the next 18 months. It jettisons — for now — what Democrats hailed as “the only game in town” — because it included tax increases approved without Republican votes.

For those keeping score at home, the budget was passed on December 18 so by “immediately veto” he really meant “sit on his ass for 20 days and then veto” the only game in town.

Schwarzenegger is simply incapable of governing and his Republican legislators are zealots who are going out of their way to harm the state, not help.

UPDATE by Dave: Steinberg tells the SacBee ed. board that the Governor got cold feet:

Between Sunday night and Monday, something else occurred unrelated to the specifics of the issues. It is cold feet, you know. He met with Republican leaders on Monday morning. I think he is back in that place where he believes he can get Republican votes for revenue and therefore doesn’t have to do this unorthodox majority vote thing. We have been sort of going down that road for five or six years. It hasn’t resulted in a single vote.

Arnold thinks he’s so AWSOM that he can convince the same people who have stomped on his stomach for 5 years to come around.  Or, more likely, he didn’t want to make the anti-tax zealots cross and risk a court battle.  There is no chance his budget can pass – it has even more tax increases in it than the work-around budget, and a substantial portion of it is, essentially, “hope for private investment.”  This leads us even further down a road to ruin.  Don’t expect any tax refunds, folks.