"Is Gov. Arnold Scwharzenegger overstating the magnitude of the budget problem? Is this a political maneuver–such as when he ordered state parks closed–to scare lawmakers and push through a mix of taxes and cuts?"
If overstating is what it takes to get the attention of the legislature fine. If we can solve part of this problem by selling off parts of the State Compensation Insurance Fund or the lottery fine. What we need is no new taxes or fees. And of course, less government.
The Governor is not overstating the magnitude of the budget shortfall. Whether it is a political ploy or not, the problem is real, and one way or another it must be addressed.
Does it matter? Nobody in the Capitol pays attention to what Schwarzenegger is doing nor saying on the budget. He's become irrelevant except for his signature.
Things are just so bad it really doesn't matter what the Governor says.
That's exactly what's going on,but it's still the right thing to do. Scaring these people is the only way to get them to do anything difficult.
Is "$20 billion" hyperbole when the true figure might "only" be $14 billion? At this point, the range of solutions is so narrow, the extent of the fiscal smash-up so comprehensive, he can't overstate it.
Arnold may be exaggerating for effect but the bottom line is that the state's finances are in the toilet and if can get members of his party to pay attention and actually contribute to a real solution that we'll all be better off.
Arnold isn't overstating the problem, but he did overstate the solution that he pushed with his little buddy Steve Westly. I thought Prop 58 was going to make sure we never got into a deficit crisis again, yada, yada, yada…
He may think he's being strategic, but in the end he may be underestimating the deficit.
What's the old axiom? "Figures never lie, but liars figure?" This governor, who had some credibility with the electorate as we went into this year, has blown it. He has had no credibility with lawmakers for years. Of course, lawmakers have even less credibility with the electorate. Anybody have a genie in a bottle?
As Gov. Davis learned to his chagrin, it is almost impossible to overstate the magnitude of a budget shortfall once the downward cycle kicks in. And whatever the Department of Finance says the deficit is going to be — double it. So Arnold could be right.