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Bipartisanship fades, feuding resumes

In the 1972 film, “The Godfather,” Vito Corleone meets with the heads of the Five Families in an effort to end a year-long feud. “How did things ever get so far?” he says. “I don’t know. It was so — unfortunate — so unnecessary.”

Most Capitol observers feel the same way about the feud launched by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Jan. 5, when he declared war on a variety of Democratic constituencies despite the fact that he is the governor of a vastly Democratic state.

So, how did we get here? What would drive a governor who was voted into office by a bipartisan coalition to turn his back on half his constituency? Was it an ideological change of heart, or was it a strategic mistake based on the hubris derived from booming approval ratings? My money’s on the latter.

Schwarzenegger came into office with a bipartisan mandate. Republicans voted for him, but that’s only half the story. He received strong support from independents and even support from Democrats. In a poll by the Public Policy Institute of California taken in February 2004, 44 percent of Democrats and 58 percent of independents approved of Schwarzenegger’s job performance. That support has vanished. . travel destinations

Just as voters were angry with what they perceived as failures by Davis, they are even more furious with Schwarzenegger’s deliberate and calculated moves away from the bipartisanship that was the hallmark of his candidacy.

Schwarzenegger campaigned on education, health care, and


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