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Rare move to end budget stalemate

September 9, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
On Day 71 of the overdue budget, state lawmakers voted on another budget proposal. However, for the fourth time, it failed.In a rare move, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-California) met individually with each party's caucuses. The trouble is, the state is in unchartered territory, operating for more than two months without a budget.

"I'm insisting on bringing both parties together, Democrats and Republicans, together because this does not work with this partisanship. We got to be more bi-partisan, more post-partisan," said Governor Schwarzenegger.

Partisanship is what has kept lawmakers from reaching a compromise on a state budget, which was supposed to be in place by July 1.

Critical services throughout the state are running out of money and closing their doors.

After four unsuccessful budget votes, Assembly Speaker Karen Bass thinks it may be time to vote on the Governor's temporary one-cent sales tax increase.

"We will consider voting on his budget tomorrow," said Bass.

Despite the long odds of his budget passing, the Governor remains optimistic he can get Republicans to agree to a tax increase and Democrats to accept more cuts.

"It's not working up until now. But it will be working. Remember, all big things take a lot of work," said Governor Schwarzenegger. "Look, when you're governor, it's like anything. When you're in charge, then the buck stops here."

True to its word, the prison-guard union delivered the recall petition to kick Schwarzenegger out of office for what members call his "lack of leadership" on Tuesday.

Governor Schwarzenegger repeated he is not intimidated by the powerful, well-financed interest group.

"This governor is different. They can't kick me around. They can try and try all they want. They can push. They can push. But I will push back," said Governor Schwarzenegger.

A move to pass an emergency funding bill just for critical services is gaining some momentum. Politicians are feeling the heat as more daycare and medical services close down without state money.

 

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