Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Except In California

It wasn't quite the bloodbath the pundits predicted, but damned near. The GOP has taken control of the House and gained at least enough seats in the Senate to make life even more complicated for Harry Reid (who managed to win re-election). The Republicans snagged some governorships, including some I thought would go/stay Democratic. The Tea Party won some (most notably Rand Paul in Kentucky), and lost some (Angle in Nevada, O'Donnell in Delaware, Paladino in New York).

And then there's California.

Jerry Brown, who snoozed through the early campaign and delayed campaigning until Labor Day, won decisively even though heavily outspent by Meg Whitman. Our new governor can thank the unions for this victory.

Barbara Boxer, in a campaign she admits was the hardest of her career, appears to have defeated Carly Fiorina for the senate seat. Roughly 90% of the precincts have reported, but as of 2AM, Ms. Fiorina hadn't conceded. Still, Boxer appears to have kept the seat. President Obama's multiple visits on her behalf may have helped just enough to make the difference.

Democrat Gavin Newsom is the new Lieutenant Governor, and has kept his political career shining bright. There is no question but the governorship is his next target, at least at this point.

I couldn't find any definitive results on the Attorney General slot, but, frankly, either candidate would be fine in my opinion. Republican Steve Cooley, who has done a creditable job as Los Angeles District Attorney and Democrat Kamala Harris, who has done a creditable job as San Francisco District Attorney, are in a dead-heat as of 2AM (Harris has a half-point lead). This position is also a springboard for higher office.

The state legislature appears to remain in Democratic hands, but the margin has shifted a bit. Again, because more than half of the California ballots have been cast by mail, results aren't final. What does appear to be final, however, is a major change in how it will conduct its business. Voters have passed a proposition which makes a simple majority sufficient to pass a budget, rolling back the two-thirds majority requirement which has made getting a budget passed on time impossible of late.

The other propositions on the ballot also deserve a little scrutiny. The legalize marijuana initiative failed, which doesn't surprise me. The feds made it clear that they would step in and enforce federal law on the issue, and medical marijuana proponents were fearful that the enforcement would extend to them as well.

Prop 23, which would have delayed forever the environmental laws in California and which was heavily bankrolled by outside oil interests, failed resoundingly. Take that, Koch Brothers, Inc.

Not a bad night at all for California liberals when it comes to state politics. On the national level, however, it's the disaster which was predicted.

Hopefully we'll get a few weeks before the next campaign starts.

Labels: ,


Blogger PurpleGirl said...

Having a close friend who lives in L.A., I semi follow California politics. I'm pleased with the CA results, especially the failure of Prop 23 and Jerry Brown's victory over Meg Whitman.

7:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home