No, I'm sure that never occurs anywhere in America. Except California. Except for today.
SACRAMENTO – Unaware that a live microphone was broadcasting their words around the Capitol, Assembly Democrats meeting behind closed doors debated prolonging California's budget crisis for political gain.
Members of the coalition of liberal Democrats talked about slowing progress on the budget as a means of increasing pressure on Republicans.
A microphone had been left on during the closed meeting, and the conversation was transmitted to about 500 "squawk boxes" that enable staff members, lobbyists and reporters to listen in on legislative meetings.
Some members of the group, including Assemblywoman Jackie Goldberg, said if the budget crisis were extended, it could improve chances for a ballot initiative that would make it easier for the Democrats to raise taxes by lowering the threshold for passage from two-thirds to 55 percent.
This is another reason why recalling Gov. Gray Davis is a bad idea -- because Democrats still have nearly overwhelming majorities in both houses of the state legislature. With a GOP governor, instead of the wishy-washy Davis, this kind of plotting would really make the GOP look bad (and California's GOP generally doesn't need any help on that front). Leave an ineffectual Davis in and create a more advantageous atmosphere for all Republicans as they run against Democrats in the legislature next year.
Having a Republican in the Governor's mansion without a better base of support in the legislature is useless.