See update at end of posting...
Two days after an "impasse" was declared in striking a deal on an early budget framework, including Governor Jerry Brown's campaign pledge on taxes, it's hard to find anyone who's actually thrown up their hands and gone home.
That being said, a Vegas bookie would be hard pressed to calculate the right odds of this deal getting cooked by the Guv's self-imposed deadline of tomorrow.
The endless news cycle, as every journalist knows these days, demands a steady stream of reporting... and California's fiscal crisis is no exception.
And those seeking to influence the debate know it, too, which is probably why Capitol reporters found a couple of tantalizing emails in the 'in' box this week -- promoting new analyses of topical issues, but ones where the details offer a murkier picture than the screaming clarity of their respective press releases.
Governor Jerry Brown had an unexpected visitor this week in his Capitol office: rock and roller Jackson Browne, who we can only hope agreed to lend one of his hits for the deficit plagued state's new theme song.
Yep, "Running on Empty."
On this week's Capital Notes Podcast, we check the fuel gauge on the Guv's quest for a budget deal -- and special tax election deal -- by the end of next week.
As Anthony York of the Los Angeles Times and I discuss, there are definitely signs that the engine's running... but there's no guarantee that the steering on a deal is, um, in alignment.
Enough with the puns...
But he was careful to never explicitly say so.
In these days leading up to Governor Jerry Brown's big deadline for budget action, most of us who spend our time sniffing around the statehouse for something interesting are finding the task pretty tough.
Yes, that means journalists are now less fulfilled than 'first dog' Sutter.
Even so, one seems to get the sense that the ground is shifting; it's just hard to tell whether the movement means stability or free-fall.