James Clark: Put another way, we spend $184 million more per year for death penalty inmates than we do on those sentenced to life without the chance of parole. All told, California is on track to spend $1 billion on the death penalty over the next five years.
Randy Shaw: How much more evidence does Brown need that a shift to “Plan B” – moving on tax extensions without Republican support – is overdue?
Randy Shaw: The biggest story will be President Obama’s “new” relationship with Congressional Republicans; as if the president had not reached out to obstructionist Republicans from the start. We will be deluged with stories describing the “idealism and vision” of newly seated House Republicans, despite their allegiance to large corporations and goal of restoring failed Hoover-era policies.
Randy Shaw: Brown’s history shows that he likes to shake things up soon after taking office, and he now has the perfect opportunity. The public desperately wants a solution to California’s longstanding budget crisis, and Brown’s political capital is as high as it will ever be following an election where Democrats won every statewide race and maintained all their Congressional seats.
Randy Shaw: In 2008, my optimistic predictions of an Electoral College landslide for Barack Obama assumed a record turnout; today, progressives are far less energized, and the electorate is driven by anger and fear rather than hope.
Paul Hogarth: California voters are already filling out their absentee ballots. While they vote to pass Prop 19 and “no” on Prop 23, it’s important for them to also vote “yes” on Prop 24 and 25 – but most importantly, “no” on Prop 26. If we don’t get the word out, it could pass.
Adam Eran: So the origin of California’s tax reductions, and even its current budget deficit, is arguably oil price inflation. If we want a stable economy, and government without deficits, we need to stop kidding ourselves that spending is a the root our budget problems, and attend to our energy addiction.
Anthony Samad: Whitman and Brown — the black community likes to see who they’re voting for, and not just during election time.
Andrea Nill: It’s doubtful Whitman will start posting giant billboards in Spanish promoting her support for Arizona and her opposition to a path to legalization under any circumstances.
Adam Eran: Consume-atives proclaim we should cut something but seldom propose anything specific. The plan is for bankruptcy court to sort that out, rather than making consume-atives a target for blame. “Take 10% off the top” is another, meaningless Republican proposal in recent budget negotiations. What does that mean, though? Let 10% of the prisoners out? Only treat 90% of the sewage?
Sharon Kyle: Sarah Palin spoke at California State University Stanislaus in spite of the controversy that arose when her speaking contract at this pubic institution was arranged out of the pubic’s view.
Randy Shaw: Two weeks into her general election campaign, Meg Whitman has already proved that she has not followed politics in recent years. How else to explain her already picking a fight with CNA and Rose Ann DeMoro that the candidate cannot win, and that makes her look worse with each passing day?