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Brown, Whitman spar over propositions, budget

September 20, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Gubernatorial candidates Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman exchanged more political punches Monday, with Whitman demanding specifics from Brown about the budget crisis, and the former governor focusing on a key ballot proposition.In only six weeks Californians will vote on who will be their new governor. And Republican candidate Meg Whitman still hasn't taken a position on the propositions on the same ballot. Democrat Jerry Brown still refuses to get specific about which programs would be cut to balance the budget.

Former Democratic governor and current California Attorney General Jerry Brown was in Los Angeles attacking his opponent.

Former EBay Chief Executive Officer Meg Whitman was in Sacramento promoting her jobs plan and criticizing Brown.

Whitman has not taken a position on any of the propositions on November's ballot. Whitman says she will announce her decisions in the next few days.

Brown opposes Proposition 23, which would all but repeal California's Assembly Bill 32, the Global Warming Act of 2006.

"I call upon Meg Whitman, who has yet to make up her mind, to join environmentalists, labor, citizen groups in fighting this really noxious initiative," said Brown.

Whitman has said she wants a balance between environmental and economic concerns. She leans toward a moratorium on enforcing the Global Warming Act.

"There's a pause button in this legislation that the governor can put a one-year moratorium on the implementation of AB 32 in times of economic duress," said Whitman. "I would say this is times of economic duress."

"A one-year delay is just a gimmick," said Brown. "If she's for it, say so."

Whitman has detailed her plans for jobs and dealing with the state's budget.

Brown avoids specifics on how he would erase a $19 billion state budget deficit. Brown says within a month after taking office he would get all state legislators together to hear their ideas and eventually take those ideas to the people.

"I'll put my own offer on there after hearing from people," said Brown. "This is not a CEO, 'I'm the autocrat, do what I say.' This is about herding cats, bringing people together in a deliberative process."

"Mark my words: If Jerry Brown is the next governor, your taxes will go up, because that's how he believes we should solve this budget," said Whitman.

Brown has never said he wants to raise taxes. He has said there would never be a tax increase without a vote of the people.

The most recent polls indicate the governor's race could be close.

An Eyewitness News poll conducted by SurveyUSA three weeks ago had Whitman ahead by seven points.


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