Fiery rhetoric on the budget boondoggle

My e-mail inbox is melting!

From Senate Republican Leader Dennis Hollingsworth, R-Murrieta:

“Democrats presented a budget plan that did not solve the $24 billion problem. It’s piecemeal at best and does not sufficiently reduce spending. Furthermore, it relies on more than $13 billion in tax increases and gimmicks that do not fix the structural budget deficit. Voters clearly told us they want a responsible and credible balanced budget. This proposal would create an even bigger problem down the road and the Legislature will have failed the people of California yet again.”

From California Democratic Party chairman John Burton:

“Today, not a single Republican was willing to vote for a budget package that includes both cuts and new revenue. Instead, Republicans again showed their willingness to drive the state of California off a cliff to protect Big Oil and Big Tobacco. They should be embarrassed of themselves.”

From Aaron McLear, spokesman for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger:

“Legislators have known for over a week that their package was a non-starter because it increased taxes and did not cut deep enough. Their insistence on running a floor drill has cost the state valuable time and pushed us closer to insolvency. While we are happy they have agreed with the Governor and abandoned their tax proposal, the Legislature now must make the necessary cuts or allow the state to go off a cliff.”

From Alicia Trost, spokeswoman for state Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg:

“We have a comprehensive budget revision that solves our cash problem without throwing millions of Californians into economic turmoil. We understand that the Governor is comfortable eliminating health insurance for 950,000 poor children but not signing a voluntary tax on a pack of cigarettes. We’re clearly not. The Senate will vote on the cigarette tax and the rest of our budget revision in the coming days.”

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Ralph Hoffmann, Guest Columnist

    Our two political parties have bipolar disorder!

  • Elwood

    The dems are pathetic!

    What part of “NO NEW TAXES” do you suppose it is that they don’t understand?

    The dems need to bite the bullet and come up with a balanced budget that contains no new taxes or accounting tricks. Sometimes life is hard.

    More of the same BS rhetoric won’t feed the bulldog.

  • John W

    I’m not in favor of the cigarette tax hike but fail to see how an additional $15 vehicle fee or an oil severance tax would be either inaappropriate or harmful to the economy. That said, these wouldn’t cover much of the gap. The gov and the GOPers are right to reject even more accounting gimmicks (ones that some former corporate execs have gone to jail over). The cuts are dreadful, but we have no choice. Let’s get on with it.