Public gives governor and legislators the gong


The new Field Poll out today gives poor marks to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Legislature, according to a story by Mike Zapler in the Mercury News:

SACRAMENTO – Only two in five voters give Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger positive marks for his job performance, a sharp decline from his ratings late last year but virtually unchanged from a month ago, according to a California Field Poll.

The state Legislature is viewed favorably by just over one in four voters, and only one in five believe the state is heading in the right direction – half the number who said the state was on the right track six months ago.

And while two-thirds of respondents view the state budget deficit as serious, they aren’t very confident in the ability of the governor and Legislature to resolve it, the poll showed. Only 14 percent said they have a “great deal” of confidence in Schwarzenegger to “do what is right” to fix the budget; the corresponding figure for the Legislature was 4 percent.

Did we really need a poll to tell us this?

There’s no budget and the prospects for a budget include tax hikes, cuts in our schools and other services or maybe both. Everyone in Sacramento points the finger of blame at someone else but the public has its (index) finger aimed in the right direction.

I like the governor’s idea: Lock up the lawmakers in a room and don’t let them out until they come up with a budget that not only addresses this year’s problems but the ongoing structural deficit. If nothing else, it will cut down on all those useless press conferences where they puff out their chests and send verbal bombs across the aisle.

Lisa Vorderbrueggen