There hasn't been much of a post-mortem among politicos about the May 19 election -- partially because the state's fiscal crisis hasn't allowed time for pondering, but also because it's seemed pretty darn clear: the voters thought the budget deficit measures stunk.
Nonetheless, a couple of interesting points have come up in the past 24 hours... today from the state's preeminent pollsters and yesterday in my interview with Governor Schwarzenegger.
It seems Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s position at this juncture of the budget deficit debate can be summed up thusly: he's resolute on the size of the needed solution, but flexible on how to get there. In every way but one, that is.
That was the thrust of the governor’s message in a 22 minute one-on-one interview this afternoon in his state Capitol conference room. You can hear my reporting on the conversation tomorrow morning on The California Report, and the full interview will be able to be heard online on our website.
Pick your analogy... an impression of the gamesmanship now being played, and where where things stand inside the state Capitol on resolving California's $20+ billion budget deficit. For now, they're both valid.
On this week's Capital Notes Podcast, we examine where things stand on budget negotiations... from the debate over what is (or isn't) a "reserve" to possible divisions between Democrats in the Senate and Assembly.
Capitol Weekly's Anthony York and I also discuss what might happen next... and how long state finances can hold up while negotiations continue.
As California's state budget fracas begins to heat up, it's getting awfully hard to sort through the numbers, data, and pitches that are being presented to prove particular points.
So let's take a moment to get our bearings. (Note: especially for me, as I was on a brief vacation last week.)
Arnold Schwarzenegger the optimist was back on display this morning in his brief, and serious, speech to a joint session of the Legislature.
But the governor, who's fond of saying that "he alone cannot lift" the fiscal weights of California, now must find a way to get Democrats and Republicans lifting the same weight. At the same time.
Welcome to the final month of the 2008-2009 fiscal year for state government, and buckle your seatbelts for what promises to be one of the most unusual -- and difficult -- summers in state Capitol history.