Tuesday, November 08, 2005
. . . . and the Hummer You Rode In On!
For a guy who became Governor through a freakish recall election where confused voters wasted ballots on porn stars, washed up ex-child actors, and over 130 other assorted loonies, Arnold Schwarzenegger finally had a chance to prove that he was truly the peoples’ Governor. While originally elected with less than 50% of the vote, and many of those only “backup” votes by people who opposed the recall in the first place, Arnold’s handlers were calling Tuesday’s special election an “up or down vote” on the four initiatives he labeled as his reform agenda. Arguably, it was an up or down vote on Arnold himself!
Schwarzenegger called the initiatives part of a “Year of Reform,” but they were really more about revenge. Proposition 74 was little more than a “f**k you” to the teachers who have criticized him. Proposition 75 was a similar “f**k you” to other public employee unions who have also criticized him. Proposition 77, while possibly resulting in a more substantial change by redistricting before the next census, was still timed to essentially be a “f**k you” to a Democratic controlled legislature that refused to kneel down and kiss his celebrity ass from the day he walked into the Capitol.
Only Proposition 76, the Bushian named “Live Within Our Means Act,” was a dramatic reform that would give Schwarzenegger unprecedented power to cut spending on anything he didn’t like. As if the best guy to trust for good, crisp decisions on budgeting priorities is the guy owning a fleet of eight Hummers!
And the final result?
Suurrrvveyy Saaayyys: DOWN!!!
Once the dust settled, not one of these initiatives passed, and the closest any of them could get was 46.55% of the votes (with 98.7% of precincts reporting). The keystone budget bill only got 38%. To put an exclamation point on this as a personal rejection of Arnold himself, several of the initiatives were ahead in the polls, UNTIL SCHWARZENEGGER STARTED CAMPAIGNING FOR THEM!
Clearly, not only is the honeymoon over, but Californians seem ready to have the wedding annulled!
But that can't happen until 2006, and I want to celebrate now - like I always do when a political opponent takes a beating - with a big plate of chinese food and extra soy sauce! That's right: Kikkoman when he's down!
(Sorry, but I've always wanted to use that line and I haven't had many chances in the last five years!)