California Secretary of State Kevin Shelley, this evening, announced that counties had verified about 1.3 million signatures, far more than the approximately 900,000 needed to qualify for a special election to recall Gov. Gray Davis..
I think this is a mistake -- but it's a mistake that Gray Davis and the Republicans, by putting up an inept Bill Simon in the 2002 election, brought upon themselves.
It's highly unlikely that Davis will survive this, his job approval rating is in the low 20s, and he's just so out of touch with Californians. In an interview with the Associated Press earlier today, Davis remained mostly defiant, painting the effort as an vendetta by right-wing ideologues.
"I'll own up to my mistakes – I haven't done everything perfect," Davis said in an interview with The Associated Press. "But I do believe we have to stay in the direction voters want."
State spending increased about 30 percent during the Davis administration. Did the energy crisis contribute to the budget mess? Yes, but at most that represents one-third of the $38 billion hole the state finds itself in. The Democrats in Sacramento, caught earlier this week plotting to put the state through more suffering and financial ruin for political gain, are responsible for the free-spending ways of the past five years.
If the people of California want to solve this problem, they need to recall (or replace in 2004) all of them -- there can be no "recall the bums...but my assemblyman/senator is OK."
The best possible outcome for the long-term fiscal and economic growth of California is for Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante to assume the governorship when Davis is recalled. The people of California, unfortunately, have to see the bottom of the cavern before they'll ever turn to the fiscally conservative Republicans to get them out.