The California Courage Campaign produces some pretty funny and irreverent videos. Their latest is a Christmas themed video aimed at Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for the failure to bring in more taxes revenue cash for the state.
When Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected I didn't have high expectations for his tenure as governor, mostly because of his campaign promises and platform. He pledged to open up the books and go after wasteful spending. So far there hasn't been much success there. He said he would balance the budget, not raise taxes, and not cut spending on education. That just seemed like too lofty of a goal for any politician in California. I guess because I had such low expectations it is easy for him to impress me.
I did overestimate his political appeal though. I really thought he would have long coattails and could win over state legislators who didn't want someone with his ability to attract attention campaigning against them. I am sure there are some isolated cases but I think I was wrong with that idea.
But my overall impression of his ability to govern has improved from when he was first elected. I have also been impressed with his pragmatic approach to governing. He is a member of the minority party AND that same party has been distancing themselves from him quickly, which means he has no constant base of support to depend upon.
Add to that his failed "year of reform" , voters that keep passing ballot propositions that mandate budget restrictions or money spent on particular programs, and a sudden decline in taxes because of a dramatic economic slowdown and he has serious problems to face.
The fact that he remains standing with these forces aligned against him is all by itself impressive. Sure, much of this has been his own doing and he is deserves criticism for many reasons. In fact, he is starting to seem more like Gray Davis more and more.
Would you have preferred Gray Davis? He has his flaws to be sure, but many of the charges against him were just partisan attempts to gain power.
Maybe you shouldn't nominate people like Bill Simon, a man that couldn't beat Gray Davis during a time of serious problems, to be your leader.
To My friends on the left:
Maybe if Cruz Bustamante wasn't our standard bearer during the recall election things might have turned out better. Cruz Bustamante didn't even beat Steve Poizner to be insurance commissioner. Sure, Poizner could self-fund his race but this California is a progressive state where most statewide Democratic candidates should have an advantage.
Beating Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2006 would have been tough for anyone. Phil Angelides tried his best but I wonder how Steve Westley would have done?
Was there a Democrat in California that could have beaten Arnold Schwarzenegger?
Maybe someone needs to be crazy to run for governor of California? Are you impressed with any of the candidates for 2010?
I nominate Tom Hanks to run for the office.
Seriously, do you already know who you are going to support in your party's primary?