As a California resident, I loved hearing the governor talk about cutting spending, reforming taxes, mandating accountability measures in education, and limiting the power of public sector unions. I love hearing a governor boast in majority support in both chambers of the state assembly, yet at the same time offering to work with the opposition for the greater good of the state.
Unfortunately, the governor I am referring to is not Jerry Brown, but Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, who was giving a speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley. Shortly after being elected Vice Chair of the Republican Governor’s Association, whose ranks have risen to thirty members in spite of the Democratic resurgence in Washington D.C., Walker outlined to his conservative audience the successful results of his reforms, in spite of heated opposition.
Like a sinister, spendthrift left-wing doppelgänger, California has a Democratic Governor, who has received a supermajority of like-minded partisans in both chambers of the state legislature. Within weeks after the election, one state senator proposed tripling the car registration fee. A new massive tax increase leaves a billion dollar deficit. The legislature has proposed no comprehensive pension reform, and collective bargaining reforms failed once again.
California has become the anti-Wisconsin. Higher taxes, more regulations, prolix taxcode, no limits on public sector unions, all coupled with unsustainable, untouched entitlement obligations are pushing the Golden State closer to bankruptcy.
At least one governor in California outlined a return to prosperity in my state. Sadly, not mine.