The Governor is Being Recalled

For the first time in California’s history, the Governor is being put to a recall vote for something other than illegal or immoral behavior. On the ballot for October 7th are two questions: “Do I want to recall the current Governor of California?” and “If the Governor is recalled, who will I choose to replace him?” I then have a list of 135 candidates to choose from. Clearly, I’m voting “No” on the recall. To use it for anything other than removing a corrupt or immoral politician is an abuse of the tool. It is like buying a dog, losing it at the park, and returning it once it comes home from the mud and rain. We elected Gray Davis fairly in the last election. He looks bedraggled from a poor economy and lack of focus. He still comes home to deliver to his constituents, but we decide to send him back. I only shoot a dog if it bit my child. I did not see Davis biting anyone’s child.

On the second question, I’m debating between Bustamante and Schwarzenegger. The movie star, of course, is the more attractive candidate. He has an assertive Democratic wife to move him further to the left. He has Warren Buffett (another Democrat) as a member of his economic team. He’s pro-choice. He’s for gay rights. He seeks to solve California’s economic malaise. What is there not to like about him? Well… he’s a Republican, for one. He supports Bush’s economic plan. He is vague about his plans and prefers to insinuate them through his advisors. He has a lot of advisors. It’s one thing to have a bunch of competent and smart people around you to give you advice, but another to make a decision from all of their advice. What’s his track record from making big decisions from a group of knowledgeable advisors?

I know very little about Bustamante. He was born to a working-class family. He started working in the farm fields at the age of six. He got an education and he worked as a staff member for various politicians before taking office himself. He is described as a prominent “power-broker” of California, which means he has a lot of obligations to the special interests in the state. He’s an insider, to be sure, so he’d know his way around Sacramento. He has the support of the AFL-CIO and receives large contributions from the Native American (casino-owning) community. Other than knowing he has a lot of support from special interest groups, I don’t know what his plans are to improve the state’s economy. He doesn’t appeal to me as an individual voter, but I’m sure he appeals to many of the members from these special interest groups.

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