Business must be heard on the important issues in this upcoming crucial gubernatorial election. The public employee unions rushed into the fray months ago creating Independent Expenditures, eagerly responding to Democratic candidate Jerry Brown’s request that the unions attack his opponent on issues. The California Chamber of Commerce was right to begin laying the framework for a debate on important issues by advocating on one of the chief concerns business will face under a Brown administration: Taxes and spending.
The Chamber’s issue advocacy television ad campaign comes months after public employee unions established their efforts to badger Republican frontrunner Meg Whitman. Brown has urged them to do more.
Jobs and the economy are major concerns for the voters in this election cycle and the business community has an obligation to step into the hurly-burly of politics and inform the voters on issues such as taxes and spending that will endanger economic recovery and job growth.
The attacks against the Chamber’s issue advocacy campaign are clearly partisan in nature. The Democratic Party and its acolytes’ complaints against the issue ad is prompted in part by the ads effectiveness in tying Brown to bad tax and spend policies; in part by the relationship the party has with the public employee unions. As I pointed out in my article two days ago, the state Democratic convention this month is almost entirely sponsored by public employee unions. Check out the logos of the convention sponsors here.
Since the unions too often stand in the way of reforms to create jobs and improve the economy they have set a course to kill the messenger and stop the Chamber advocacy effort.
When you consider what is at stake with the election of the next governor — pension restructuring, budget reform, job-killing tax and regulation issues, redistricting implementation – the Chamber must stand up for its members in advising the public and politicians the best path to follow and avoid going down the wrong road.
Among other points, the ad informs voters that as governor Brown opposed Proposition 13, spending increased dramatically during his time in office, and he left the state in deficit. All these items constitute important information for the many voters who were not living in California when Brown served as governor three decades ago.
The ruckus raised by Brown’s supporters over the ad indicates this important information scored with viewers and the Chamber should continue to speak its mind.