Cross-posted at CalWatchdog.
Democrats are struggling to put Gov. Jerry Brown’s $12 billion tax increase proposal up for a June 2011 election of the voters of the state of California, which supposedly would help close the budget deficit of $25 billion. They need 2/3 votes in both houses of the Legislature to call a special election for the vote, but are just shy of that number. Which means they need a handful of Republican votes in each house of the Legislature to put the ballot measure to the people.
Callbuzz even said this was “undemocratic.”
But do they really need the minimum Republican support in the Legislature?
Actually, no. There’s a way around it, if Democrats dare. It involves a two-step process. The steps must be done in order.
Step 1. Do this quickly. Gather petitions to put the $12 billion tax increase on the next statewide ballot. Signature-gathering now costs about $2 million for each initiative petition.
Step 2. Gather petitions to recall one statewide elected official. That also will cost about $2 million to collect the signatures. You remember from the Gray Davis recall of 2003 that, when the recall of an official is put before the voters, all the statewide initiatives that have qualified immediately go on the ballot, too. So the tax-increase initiative would go on the ballot.
The next question: Which statewide official should be recalled? Democrats hold all the statewide positions now, so they can’t target a Republican officeholder. They’ll have to sacrifice one of their own. The obvious choice: Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom. The job shouldn’t exist anyway. He’s a clown whom we would laugh at as he flailed around trying to hold onto his worthless, tax-sucking job.
Newsom probably would prevail in a recall, keeping his post. The point of the recall would not be to get rid of him, but to put the tax increase on the ballot, as well as the entertainment value.
So there you have it, Democrats: A way to put Gov. Jerry’s Brown’s tax increase on the ballot without even talking to GOP legislators.
Calbuzz and others should stop whining about the end of democracy. You want direct democracy, you got direct democracy. And for $4 million, which is chump change to the teachers’ unions, the prison guards’ unions, the cop unions, the Silicon Valley billionaires and other Democratic special interests in this state.
And by the way: Do I have to show you guys everything?