On November 6 voters in California did something nearly unheard of during the past 30 years: They approved, by a margin of 54 percent to 46 percent, a ballot measure raising state income taxes on the most prosperous Californians and sales taxes on everyone, even though the state’s sales tax is already the highest in the nation.
‘California is a wonderful state mismanaged by lunatics,” declares Steven Greenhut, vice president of journalism for the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity. Anyone who examines California’s economy ought to agree.
San Bernardino on Tuesday became the third California city in less than a month to seek bankruptcy protection, with officials saying the financial situation had become so dire that it could not cover payroll through the summer.
We pundits have been busy crunching the results in last Tuesday's Wisconsin recall election and have noted that the public-employee unions sustained a huge defeat.
Some have also looked west, to California, where San Diego and San Jose voters Tuesday voted 66 and 69 percent to cut back public-employee pensions. Those cities voted 63 and 69 percent for Barack Obama in 2008.
Mark Hemingway notes that, "While all eyes were on Wisconsin last night, few people noticed that...residents of both San Diego and San Jose voted to rein in exorbitant public employee retirement packages by huge margins. ... Also worth noting is that these measures had support from key Democrats at the local level."
President Obama is off to California for five fundraising events across two days. The events were, doubtless, scheduled before yesterday's recall election in Wisconsin, the results of which the punditry is analyzing in exceedingly close detail. Their preliminary conclusions that provide the most consolation for the losers are:
This month, the Los Angeles city council is expected to ban single-use plastic bags. “[T]he ban is an attempt by the city to reduce litter,” says the Los Angeles Daily News. But it is likely to reduce something else: jobs.
In order to make sure gays and lesbians are adequately represented on the judicial bench, the state of California is requiring all judges and justices to reveal their sexual orientation. The announcement was made in an internal memo sent to all California judges and justices.