Proposition 30 is on the California ballot as the result of the Democrat controlled legislature’s failure to do its job and a Democratic Governor giving that legislature a free pass. Reduced to its essence, Prop 30 will burden California taxpayers with an additional $6,600,000,000 in new taxes. California is in a financial crisis of epic proportions and is in far worse shape than most of the rest of the country largely because a Democrat controlled legislature wascontinueally reelected by promising to pay for everything for everyone and has never bothered to look at how they are going to meet these ridiculous and dangerously bloated spending commitments. There are a few things that the legislature can do to start to heal California’s economy, but all of these require these Democrats dominating California government to start to cut spending, shrink government and/or raise taxes. Personally I think that the raise taxes method is the least desirable and least effective method of controlling the state budget, but I would have at lease had some respect for the legislature if they had taken that action. Instead, the legislature has taken the most cowardly approach possible – they have done nothing to control spending and have passed the question of tax increases on to the people in the form of Proposition 30.
Avoiding its legislative obligations regarding taxes is both cowardly and hypocritical. It is cowardly because these Democrats do not want to be held accountable for increasing taxes properly evaluating that in an incredible difficult economic time it is not the right moment to increase taxes. Had the Democrats taken this action directly, it would have been political suicide. It is hypocritical because the Democrats have repeatedly reject all attempts to shrink the size of government, to control salaries of state employees, to control the bloated and crippling pensions of government employees, to reduce the size of a bloated bureaucracy that has so many paid political positions it is difficult for even the most grizzled California political wonk to name them all or to take any other measures to cut runaway spending.
Prop 30 is a complete misuse of the California initiative process which was placed in the constitution at a time when it was recognized that a part-time legislature might not get to or recognize all issues of significance to California’s electorate. It was NOT put in place for the Governor or the legislature to punt on issues that they feel too “politically hot” to deal with themselves. Rather than actually stand by their words, the Governor and the legislature have ducked on this issue and are counting on an expensive ad campaign to convince citizens to tax themselves. I hope this circumvention and avoidance of their political responsibility fails and both the Democratic Governor and legislature face serious electoral consequences for refusing to do their jobs.