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Willie Brown Jr. wows Contra Costa mayors

By Lisa Vorderbrueggen
Friday, September 4th, 2009 at 6:24 pm in California Assembly, California Legislature, Contra Costa County.

Willie Brown Jr.

Willie Brown Jr.

Iconic California politician Willie Brown Jr. offered Contra Costa mayors last night a surefire formula to fix California’s problems: Ditch term limits and end the two-thirds voting requirement in the Legislature to pass a budget. (Watch the full speech below.)

Brown was the keynote speaker at the Contra Costa Mayors Conference meeting in San Ramon.

Term limits have robbed the Legislature of experienced lawmakers and the valuable relationships that produce solutions, he said. And the two-thirds rule has allowed a minority to hold the budget and the entire state of California hostage, something he says he never allowed when he was the Speaker of the Assembly.

Brown also opposed the idea of calling a Constitutional Convention unless California can somehow persuade John Adams and Thomas Jefferson to attend. Such a convention, he said, would open up the process to loud minorities who will outlast reasonable people and lead to disaster for the people of California.

Instead, he said the state activate a Constitutional Revision Committee comprised of smart people with proven expertise and require lawmakers to vote their recommendations up or down.

Oh, and if Willie Brown were still in Sacramento, he modestly suggested, things would not be in such a mess.

Watch the full speech below. He is a fantastic public speaker.

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  • http://www.repaircalifornia.org Adrian Covert

    I’d remind Mr. Brown that neither Thomas Jefferson nor John Adams had any hand in writing the US Constitution. Additionally, I’d like to know exactly how Mr. Brown planned on reforming term limits, or any other part of Sacramento for that matter, outside a constitutional convention? The legislature? The initiative process? With all due respect to Mr. Brown, if either were capable of seriously reforming state government they would have done so already. We need to turn to the people for the type of truly deliberative process only a Limited Constitutional Convention can provide.