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California has a spending problem. As State Senator Tom McClintock likes to point out, population and inflation combined have grown at a rate of 21% the past four years; revenue has grown 25%. Yet California government spending has grown 40%. The result is an unprecedented state budget deficit expected to exceed $35 billion.
- Thomas Krannawitter 5/2/03

Why Not McClintock?
Recall facts.
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McClintock Lays Out His Plans For California
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[10/31/03 Friday]

[Larry Stirling] 6:55 am
Director of the California Department of Forestry & Fire Protection:
Andrea Tuttle’s qualifications to lead the largest fire department in the state – NONE.

[10/30/03 Thursday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 6:09 am
The Collectinator: This week, Arnold Schwarzenegger is visiting the capitol for the first time since winning California's governorship in a landslide.

The pundit class and Democrats throughout the state have observed repeatedly that it's unlikely that the federal government will bail California out of its fiscal crisis. And that's true. But there are ways that the federal government can help without simply throwing money at the state -- and it's quite likely that Arnold will succeed in winning some very helpful concessions from the Bush administration.

One of most helpful measures would be a willingness on the part of the federal government to reimburse California for the cost of jailing illegal immigrants. But this is unlikely to come through -- because the government would then be faced with similar petitions from states like Arizona, Texas, etc. More possible might be the waiver of federal penalties for mistakes like overpayments in the food stamp program, and the forgiveness of sanctions imposed as a result of California's failure to meet federal deadlines for establishing a statewide computerized child support payment system.

In any case, Schwarzenegger's election at least helps put the state of California "in play" for the Republicans. President Bush surely knows that any help given to Schwarzenegger is a good investment in his own political future.

So prepare to see the "Collectinator" return from Washington with more than might have been expected.

[10/29/03 Wednesday]

[Chris Reed] 5:08 am
Rosen v. Nexis: San Francisco Chronicle columnist Ruth Rosen, a former history professor, presents herself as a passionate, idealistic liberal dedicated to all the 1960s' isms that remain in fashion only in Baghdad by the Bay. But darn that Nexis! The evil news-retrieval service shows just what a partisan fraud she is. | Here's Rosen writing in Monday's Chronicle about her outrage that California Attorney General Bill Lockyer said he voted for Arnold Schwarzenegger despite allegations of widely varying credibility that Schwarzenegger was a serial groper: "I'm hardly the only person who was shocked by such an apparent dismissal of what are, under California law, crimes of sexual harassment and sexual battery." | Cue Nexis: Here's Rosen, then just another lefty academic, writing in a May 23, 1994, column in the San Francisco Examiner about the allegations that President Clinton had once exposed himself and asked for sex from an Arkansas state employee while he was that state's governor: "Have we come the point where anyone can file a suit, make serious charges, and the media, without benefit of investigation or trial, will simply publish detailed allegations?" she wrote.| Now this sort of pathetic, cheap two-facedness may be par for the course for fixers-turned-pundits like Paul Begala. But when it comes from one of the tired left-wing set who pretend their views make them superior human beings, it's especially repulsive ? and revealing. Ruth Rosen is a disgrace. If there are any principled feminists left in the world, they'd agree.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:05 am
Youth Rebellion: It's entertaining to envision the pollsters at Harvard's Institute for Politics with their heads spinning 360 degrees and spitting green pea soup upon learning the results of their own recent poll. According to Byron York, writing in The Hill, college students (who, since the 1960's have seemed to be irremediably liberal) actually support President Bush MORE than does the public at large (among students, the President has 61% approval ratings, with 38% disapproving). What must be even worse for liberal academics is the news that more students (38%) consider themselves Republicans than Democrats (27%). What is the world coming to??? Here's my theory: The academy has been completely dominated for so long by leftist lunatics -- and so devoid of any meaningful ideological competition -- that liberal/left thought on the campus has become sloppy and arrogant. The complacent leftism/radicalism espoused by too many faculty members has lost all credibility with newer generations, who have begun to humor their professors with the bemused tolerance reserved for the aged or insane. Young people often enjoying rebelling against the "established order," which, in their world, is the left wing professoriate. It's becoming rebelliously cool to be a Republican again. It would be interesting to know whether numbers vary with the selectivity of the colleges (I would bet that Ivy League campuses are still overwhelmingly liberal, for example). In any case, wouldn't it be fun to see hordes of articulate Republican students actually speaking up at "The Kremlin on the Charles" (i.e., Harvard)?

[Doug Gamble] 5:03 am
Green Flames: While the wildfires now ravaging southern California are cyclical and inevitable, it stands to reason that disaster prevention measures such as President Bush's Healthy Forests Restoration Act would represent progress in curbing their severity. | The Act would help protect forests, homes and lives through the thinning of fire-prone and diseased forestation. It has passed in the House but is being stalled by liberals in the Senate who are playing politics as usual. Apparently they don't like preemptive action of any kind, not just in Iraq. Failure to pass the bill would be a victory for the environmentalist wackos who put trees ahead of people, but whose inflexibility results, ironically, in the destruction of more trees. | Also ironically, this common sense bill would probably have been supported by Democrats had it been proposed by President Clinton, but because it comes from a Republian it has to be rejected out of hand. Nero may have fiddled while Rome burned, but environmentalists obstruct. To paraphrase the poet Joyce Kilmer, I think that I shall never see a thing so pathetic as enviromentalists who won't allow thinning of a single tree.

[10/28/03 Tuesday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:25 am
The Fires: Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the people and animals who are suffering because of the raging fires across the state. Blessings on all the valiant firefighters -- including those who have vowed to keep the Reagan Library safe. Having grown up in the Midwest, a region that is threatened by tornadoes and floods, it's entirely different to try to face down the devastation wreaked by earthquake and fire -- they just seem so much more unpredictable on the one hand, and violent on the other. As always, though, the people of the Golden State will rise to the challenge. We will rebuild, and we will be stronger than we were before. Hopefully, we will be ready to challenge the policies that end up making California more prone to an inferno like this one. We must see that some good comes out of this.

[10/27/03 Monday]

[Streetsweeper] 8:05 am
Touring Downtown LA: Claremont’s Ken Masugi takes a short tour of the city’s core and gives us a quick take on Disney Hall and the new cathedral. However, the most interesting tidbit in this post at Claremont’s Blog – The Remedy – is that he was a classmate of Ted Bundy. Now we know.

[10/25/03 Saturday]

[Nicholas X. Winter] 9:05 am
Di-Fi, the voice of reason? The Mercury News laments that the U.S. Senate passed the partial-birth abortion ban over Di-Fi's sensible and reasonable objection that there is no provision for the “health” of the mother. Reasonable? Health? Feinstein is making NARAL’s weasel-word argument cast as a plea for compassion. She's just carrying water for the radicals. Di-Fi is always painted as a moderate, but what is moderate about removing a live, viable baby from a mother's birth canal and plunging a needle into its brains before it’s fully born? We live in a lamentable time when women claw for false power over the carcasses of butchered children. Medea had nothing over Feinstein and Boxer...

[10/24/03 Friday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:54 am
But did they have driver's licenses? Walmart is a great American institution, but it's routinely ridiculed by elitists who have nothing but contempt for the salt-of-the-earth, normal type of person who shops there. Now we've learned that Walmart has been "busted" for hiring independent contractors who in turn hired illegal aliens from Eastern Europe! Who knew that the biggest illegal immigrant problem was a bunch of Eastern Europeans working as janitors at Walmarts on the East Coast? Good to know that the INS is concentrating its efforts where they're really needed. I wonder if Cruz Bustamante and all his friends will think it worth their while to defend a bunch of white guys who speak Czech rather than Spanish. I wouldn't hold my breath.

[10/23/03 Thursday]

[in the ebag - Scott Dillard] 11:25 am
Electioneering: I just read Larry Stirling's piece on the voter security system in Mexico. How refreshing! I would love to see one of you folks bring it up to Arnold's advisors. There's no reason a system similar to theirs cannot be enacted here. It would go a long way to reduce voter fraud in California elections and I don't see any conflict with federal voting law. We might have to modify the system a bit, but the voter registration cards, the photo ID and fingerprint would help. Push it up the ladder.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 6:49 am
Borking Brown: Surprise, surprise. The Democrat zealots on the Judiciary Committee are knocking themselves out to Bork California's own Justice Janice Rogers Brown -- by all accounts, a wonderful woman, an excellent jurist and, incidentally, an African-American.

Where are the Republicans? This could be a defining moment for the Democratic Party, if they could get their acts together. Just last month, here in California, we saw how the liberal feminists' defense of Bill Clinton had totally destroyed their credibility when they tried to protest alleged sexual misbehavior by Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger. And now, we should be revealing the Democrats for the hypocrites that they are, when they try to claim that they are the party that uniquely stands for the progress of women and minorities on one hand, and attack fine nominees like Miguel Estrada and Janice Rogers Brown on the other.

What the Democrats are doing to ALL the nominees they have filibustered -- including Bill Pryor and Charles Pickering -- is shameful. Apparently, extremism in the efforts to prevent strict constructionists from ascending the bench is no vice. But when they deliberately attempt to smear and destroy highly qualified minority and female candidates that their cynicism and hypocrisy becomes truly appalling.

Here's a modest suggestion: The Republican National Committee should be running ads as follows: [Show picture of Miguel Estrada] "This is Miguel Estrada. He is an American success story." [Follow with his biography -- how he came from Honduras, attended Harvard Law School, clerked for Justice Kennedy, served with distinction in the Justice Department for Republican and Democrat administrations. Then reveal that he was so mistreated by Judiciary Committee Democrats that he eventually withdrew his nomination, even though he could have won confirmation had he been given a vote in the full Senate]. Then give Justice Brown the same treatment. Throw in Priscilla Owen, or Carolyn Kuehl for good measure.

It's a shame that Senate Republicans can't stand to miss a good night's sleep in order to make the Democrats stage a real filibuster -- after all, it's only people's lives, careers and reputations that are at stake! But at least let's let America see exactly who it is that the Democrats are mistreating. And then, the next time that Jesse Jackson or La Raza comes out to attack Republican "insensitivity" to minorities, they'll have all the credibility of the National Organization of Women attacking Arnold Schwarzenegger.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:42 am
Boxer Cuts? According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Sen. Barbara Boxer is making a major push for a corporate tax break that would provide a one-time tax holiday on billions of dollars in overseas corporate earnings. Boxer's bill would slash the tax rate to 5.25 percent for just one year as way to lure money back to the United States -- currently, U.S. corporations are parking or investing abroad anywhere from $265 billion to $406 billion in their overseas earnings to avoid the 35 percent U.S. tax on corporate earnings.

How we love election year conversions. Contrary to all appearances until now, Senator Boxer seems to be aware that a lower tax rate can boost capital spending, create jobs, and add significantly to economic growth. So why is this virtually the first tax cut she's ever supported?

And as delighted as we are that she's finally found a tax cut she can support, here's a question for the senator: Why is she choosing to reward companies that have chosen to shelter money overseas in the first place? Apparently, in Barbara Boxer's world, the "rich" individuals who work and live in the United States, who have already been investing here -- and the companies that have pumped their earnings back into the American economy -- aren't being taxed enough, but the companies that have taken advantage of overseas tax shelters deserve a break. That's tax fairness, Boxer style.

[10/22/03 Wednesday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 6:43 am
Country Club Rules: Senator John Warner (R-Va) should be ashamed. He has joined with Democrat Carl Levin to ask Donald Rumsfeld to reassign General Jerry Boykin while the inspector general investigates General Boykin's remarks. According to the Washington Times, Warner commented, "When you start trying to explain what you did say, you need time out to do a little study."

Ah, now I see. If someone in the press [hint: LA Times] so egregiously distorts your views that you have to clarify them in order to defend yourself, you're automatically guilty. And if you don't defend yourself, you're automatically guilty. Heads - Arkin wins; tails - Boykin loses. Senator Warner apparently believes we must be religiously INTOLERANT of evangelical Christians in order to prove that we are religiously TOLERANT of Muslims. Now that makes a lot of sense -- particularly when the grandstanding senator doesn't seem to have called for "journalist" William Arkin's transcripts of Boykin's remarks in order to assess their truth for himself.

Why, oh why, do Republicans want to hand Democrats a tool to discredit some of their most loyal supporters? The truth is that there are some Republicans who would rather make common cause with Democrats than appear to be standing with evangelicals -- the New York Times might not approve and friends at the club might find one louche...

In the end, the Boykin controversy is about nothing more than an effort to de-legitimize and "marginalize" the outspoken expression of any religious truth, particularly when the speaker is a fundamentalist Christian. By arguing that radical Islamists will hate America if fundamentalists are allowed to speak openly, the anti-religious just find a respectable way to promote their view that there should never be any religious expression in the public square.

Senators like John Warner just don't get it. If, perchance, General Boykin would lose his job (and he'd better not!), he'll be fine -- he knows who he is, and why he is here. The big loser would be America and its military, deprived of the services of one of our finest. But that's a price some are willing to pay in order to be sure that radical Islamists (who are willing to kill Americans and lie about our motives and intentions, anyway) aren't offended. Perhaps if America plays nicely, all the bad men will just go away. Yes -- that strategy certainly worked well for America all throughout the end of the 1990's.

[10/21/03 Tuesday]

[Doug Gamble] 5:47 am
O Canada: I’m in the midst of a 10-day visit to Canada’s largest city, Toronto, and it reminds me very much of home because it looks like what the Democrats have done, or would like to do, to California.

High taxes, runaway spending, oppressive government regulation, gay marriages, legalized pot possession, hatred of President George W. Bush – this place is like Cruz Bustamante’s vision of paradise. If Democratic State Senator John Vasconcellos sticks to his inclination not to run for office again because of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s gubernatorial victory, he should come here where he his leftist policies would have him hailed as a hero.

Watching TV, I came across a political discussion program and noticed that some of the participants kept referring to a certain politician as a “right-wing extremist.” I tried to imagine what this person had done, or was advocating, to earn such a label. Did he favor the death penalty for double parking, forced religion in the schools, putting the homeless into labor camps? No, further viewing of the program revealed that he was considered a right-wing extremist for suggesting a tax cut.

I’d laugh even harder except for the fact that California has for too long been on the same road that Canada long ago traveled. One wonders where our state would be just a few short years from now if Bustamante had prevailed on October 7. It will not only be good to get back home this weekend, it will be good to return to a place where a Republican governor can fight against the forces that would turn California into a Canada with better weather.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:41 am
Dissing the Gipper:
A story running today in The New York Times discusses a pending mini-series based on the life and presidency of California's greatest governor, President Ronald Reagan. According to the news story, the mini-series, starring James Brolin (husband of Barbra Streisand) makes "no mention of the economic recovery or the creation of wealth during [Reagan's] administration . . .. Nor does it show him delivering the nation from the malaise of the Jimmy Carter years . . .." Instead, "the details the producers do choose to stress — like Mr. Reagan's moments of forgetfulness, his supposed opinions on AIDS and gays, his laissez-faire handling of his staff members — often carry a disapproving tone."

Let's not kid ourselves -- judging from the news account in The New York Times, the purpose of this mini-series is clear. It is designed to rewrite the history of one of the finest presidents in American history, and in the process, discredit everything that President Reagan stood for: Smaller government, a strong defense, and most of all, his vision of America as the "city on a hill," a beacon to the world -- a nation blessed by God.

Most offensively, the script apparently shows President Reagan asserting that "They that live in sin shall die in sin," with regard to those suffering from AIDS. For shame! Clearly, the producers want young people and the forgetful to experience President Reagan -- and all those who have the temerity to voice religious beliefs about homosexuality -- as cruel and judgmental. President Reagan was neither, as his biographer, Lou Cannon, points out in The Times' story.

The producers and hate-filled revisionists may try to purvey their alternate reality about President Reagan's presidency and character. But they will fail. President Reagan is my hero. I lived through his presidency. And I REMEMBER it. There are countless others like me. And as long as there is breath in our bodies, we will not allow the work and the integrity of one of America's greatest to be discredited, distorted and trashed.

Ronald Reagan ended the Cold War, spread freedom throughout the world, and brought America back from an era of crippling self-doubt. He reminded this country that it is noble, and that its people are kind and generous. He was a visionary, who saw the demise of Communism when many of the "experts" were trying to find the best way to appease what was, clearly, an evil empire. We will never be able to thank him enough.

I remember being impressed when President Reagan once said that he didn't really worry about his legacy -- that he trusted history to treat him fairly. As long as I have a brain to think with, a mouth to speak with, and hands to write with, I will work to see that President Reagan's confidence will not go unjustified.

[10/20/03 Monday]

[Nicholas X. Winter] 5:05 am
TimesGrinding: Today in CRO’s Op-Ed page Carol Liebau and John Mark Reynolds line up a double-barreled blast on the LA Times... What’s up with the Times, anyway? Used to be that the paper was just elitist, snobbish and boorish... Sneering at political conservatives and chuckling at evangelical Christians... But things are getting a whole lot meaner at the Times. Certainly the timing of the hit pieces on Arnold Schwarzenegger was totally suspect. Just last week the Times coordinated an attack to sabotage the career of Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin for professing his faith... Was the original reporting newsworthy? Maybe to a minor degree... But getting MSNBC all ginned up to get the “pictures” out first and then to print the article and then to print an Op-Ed blasting Boykin and then running an Editorial equating Boykin with Malaysia’s Jew-hating Prime Minister... Gee, somebody’s busy there... While the Times callously pins the word “jihad” on Boykin – it should more properly look into its own cultural jihad against traditional values.

[10/18/03 Saturday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 9:51 am
Boxer on Iraq, wrong again:
As we prepare to elect a U.S. senator next year, let's remember Barbara Boxer's vote this week to deny funds for the rebuilding of Iraq. According to a statement, Boxer instead supported a plan that would have "required the Administration to gain commitments of funding and manpower from other nations to ease our nation's incredible burden." In short, Boxer was willing to force the United States to go begging to the moral titans at the United Nations. It is a miracle of sorts -- finally, Barbara Boxer has identified some government spending of which she disapproves (but even here, she can't be honest -- $87 billion, while a huge sum, does not constitute an "incredible burden" for a country the size of the United States). But her ignorance is no laughing matter. Had Boxer's view prevailed, it would have constituted a great victory for Saddam Hussein -- like in the days of the Clinton administration, radical Muslims and others who hate us would have concluded that America is too weak, too cowardly, or too stupid to follow through on its commitments. In Boxer's statement, in fact, she serves (inadvertantly, one must assume) as a PR agent for Saddam Hussein, helpfully providing the number of Americans killed or wounded in Iraq. Through her vote this week, once again, Barbara Boxer has demonstrated her manifest inability to grasp the significance of what America is trying to achieve in Iraq, and in the Middle East more generally. And she has provided just one more reason -- albeit a big one -- why her retirement from the Senate is long, long overdue.

[10/17/03 Friday]

[in the ebag - Scott Dillard] 5:58 am
Don't let the door hit you on the way out... I see that Gray Davis is urging the state Senate to come back into session to approve a long list of appointees to various state commissions. According to the story in the Mercury News he seems to think that this is a normal transition activity. Perhaps Davis didn't get the message: he is not at the end of his term, he has been fired.

[10/16/03 Thursday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 4:54 pm
Times NBC Axis: Reading The Times' hyperventilating coverage about Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin's religious faith makes one thing patently clear: This is a deliberate and systematic attempt to discredit him personally, and to impugn his effectiveness professionally, as a result -- and ONLY as a result -- of his religious beliefs. That's the only explanation for the "tag-team" coverage between NBC News and The Los Angeles Times. The way The Times has written about Lt. Gen. Boykin's faith makes it clear that they are neither familiar with, nor respectful of, evangelical Christianity and those who believe in it. Anyone who doubts that should contrast it with their carefully neutral coverage of other belief systems ranging from atheism to fundamentalist Islam -- The Times would NEVER have suggested that someone's anti-religious views were sufficient to render him less than fully qualified for any particular post. In his book The Embarassed Believer, Hugh Hewitt writes compassionately of the understandable reluctance of even the most faithful to expose themselves to ridicule by expressing their faith. It is a sad commentary that, in the few short years since that fine book was written, believers are not only confronting ridicule, but what appears to be a well-synchronized attempt to ostracize them from public service -- whether on federal courts or in the military.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:53 am
Weaseling: Insights about the "journalism" at The Los Angeles Times just keep coming and coming. Jill Stewart recounts reports of a newsroom culture determined to "catch" Arnold, and willing to pay any price to do it, while Hugh Hewitt has continued to offer cogent analysis of the impact of the blogosphere on the future of The Times. I would offer one other observation: The Times, like all other journalistic enterprises, bases its raison d'etre on the right of the people "to know." But now that its own operations -- not the actions of some sorry politician or evil big business -- are under the microscope, it seems at once deceptive and contemptuous of those daring to question it. Surely Times reporters would not accept the kind of evasive and incomplete explanations proffered so far by John Carroll, were they being purveyed by some other institution -- say, the Republican Party. By its conduct now, The Times is squandering its credibility as surely as it did in the last five days before the recall election. One can only hope that The Times remembers that its readers do, indeed, have "the right to know." Otherwise, it will be guilty of one of the few sins recognized by liberals: Hypocrisy.

[10/15/03 Wednesday]

[Streetsweeper] 5:40 am
TimesGrinder: Jill Stewart at Capitol Punishment swings back at the Times. This weekend, editor John Carroll wrote a weasely piece about the the Times decision in publishing the late hit piece on Arnold-groper and took a couple of pokes at Jill at the same time... Well, Jill takes a deep dive and completely trashes Carroll’s contentions... And she’s got an interview with a Times insider to back up her claim... The insider compares John Carroll as having a Captain Ahab-like obsession to get the Great Whale Moby Arnold... Gee, 24 reporters on the story... I mean, sure it was a hit piece, but you’d think with 24 reporters it would have been kinda nuclear instead of just smarmy...

[in the ebag - Scott Dillard] 5:39 am
Immigrant Right? I really wish Arnold would come to the Bay Area to speak. Not to the mainstream, liberal government groups here, but to the immigrant communities and political clubs. Immigrant Asians and Hispanics and their offspring are going to be the future of California, and he would do well to speak to them. He should stress his status as an immigrant, and reach out to them. If Arnold can get the attention of the Chinese, Vietnamese, Indians and other groups here he could do much to sell the Republican Party and its values to them. Contrary to Democratic beliefs, these groups are natural Republican consituencies; they have extended families, they work very hard, they push their kids to succede. The young adults in the Asian communities are looking for political direction, and they should be given strong alternatives to the victimhood offered by the Democrats. Remember, Asians alone are already 11% of the state.

[10/14/03 Tuesday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:53 am
What does it all mean?
Well, here's what the numbers tell us: Arnold Schwarzenegger received more votes (at 3,744,132) than did Gray Davis, either this year (when there were 3,562,487 against the recall) or last year (when he was re-elected with 3,469,025). And almost one million more Californians wanted to recall Davis (at 4,416,280) than voted in 2002 to elect him. Clearly, voters wanted Davis out -- and Arnold was their overwhelming choice. There is reason to think that voters will not respond well to threats by Democratic operative Bob Mulholland and others to attempt a recall on Arnold. For one thing, 400,000 more people voted for a Republican than for the recall -- which means there must have been at least that many who either voted "no" on recall because of principled opposition to the process itself, or didn't vote on Question One at all, who then went on to support either Schwarzenegger or McClintock. So it's hard to see where Mulholland's brigades would find the masses of discontented pro-recall voters -- especially when any recall petition would need to collect 12% of the gigantic turnout on election just in order to qualify for the ballot.

[10/13/03 Monday]

[Doug Gamble] 5:47 am
Post Election:
With the recall election in the books for almost a week now, how do Tom McClintock supporters feel these days? I can only speak for myself, but in addition to joy that Gray Davis is gone and Cruz Bustamante was repudiated, I have to admit that I am more impressed with Arnold Schwarzenegger than I had anticipated. I had pegged his candidacy as nothing more than a celebrity-driven ego trip, but in two post-election press conferences he displayed not only unexpected humility (unexpected by me) but also indications of a vision for California's future. It looks like he knows what he wants to do and how to do it. | Schwarzenegger is obviously a shrewd man and Democrats who underestimate him are making a big mistake. And he is a master communicator, something Democrats have not had to contend with in California politics since Ronald Reagan was governor. Schwarzenegger's communications skills seem to spring not just from his acting experience but from a deep inner core of confidence and determination. | I'm glad that McClintock stayed in the race until the end, as he insisted all along he would. To drop out would have been to betray his character and would have deprived voters of a conservative and experienced candidate. And of course all the worry that he would split the Republican vote to such an extent it would elect Bustamante turned out to be for nothing. I'm bothered, though, by reports that he will be challenged for re-nomination when his state senate seat is up next year, apparently with the backing of a state GOP that sees him as a thorn to be removed. I believe state Republicans would be all the poorer without the principled presence of a Tom McClintock. One of the reasons I'm a fan of U. S. Senator John McCain, with all his contrarian stubbornness, is because I believe politics needs more s - - t disturbers, not fewer. When the GOP used to talk about a big tent, it meant there was room in the party for moderates. Now, I hope there is still room in the California party for conservatives.

[10/11/03 Saturday]

[Jon Fleischman] 6:45 am
First Steps: It is a natural phase that we are in - analysis of the election - and with that comes all of the internal 'spin' within the GOP about whether Schwarzenegger's victory is a 'win for liberals and moderates' within the party, or if conservatives won this election for Schwarznegger (Fox News reported that 66% of self-described conservatives voted for Schwarzenegger). It is going to be challenging to definitively answer this question because this recall election was so different than anything we have seen before, with major factors such as the structure of the vote (the 'combined' primary and general election on one ballot), the State Party endorsing a candidate, and, of course, the presence of an incredibly well-known and popular celebrity on the ballot. | Our 'friends' in the media will continue in their attempts to paint the GOP as a party divided. Rather than GOP conservatives (of which I count myself one), moderates or liberals trying to 'spin' this election as a victory for any particular faction of the party (or a loss for another), let's all focus on talking about how this is a victory for OUR party, and express our unified support for Governor-elect Schwarzenegger, and our confidence in him as he goes to push his very Republican policy agenda in a capitol dominated by liberal Democrat majorities in the legislature. | It is clear that Arnold Schwarzenegger's candidacy in the recall election has brought many people together within the GOP who, frankly, aren't used to working together. Let's use this opportunity to get to know each other, and develop the all-important relationships that will help us to become and stay friends through the next set of very real primaries next March. The true measure of strength for a political party is measured in the ability of its members to engage in vibrant debates in the primaries, and unify behind our nominees for the General Elections.

[Reader Scott Dillard] 5:58 am
Fallout: I hope you folks saw Weintraub's blog where he says State Senator John Vasconcellos might resign rather than work with Arnold. Maybe my email to him worked.

[10/10/03 Friday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 6:45 am
The Willies: At his second press conference in as many days, Arnold yesterday unveiled the names of those he has asked to advise him on his transition. As he himself pointed out, the names range from Bill Simon on the right, to Willie Brown on the left. At the sound of the latter name, some conservatives have started to panic -- but their concern is premature. All Arnold is doing is casting a wide initial net . . . collecting as many potential candidates for his administration as possible. Like he said when he assembled economic advisors at the outset of his campaign -- they may propose, but he makes the decision. Sure, if he decides to staff his administration with all Willie Brown's proposals and none of Bill Simons, there'll be cause to complain. But it hasn't happened yet. Hopefully, conservatives will keep their powder dry -- and wait to see if there is an objectionable outcome to this process, before they start objecting to it.

[Larry Stirling] 6:43 am
To George Will re: Your Editorial A Conservative Travesty - I am a one hundred percent fan of yours. And I am sorry that these are the first words you ever hear from me, but you are absolutely wrong on all of this. | The battle is between the leaners and the lifters. The leaners took over the state. It is a one-party state and the excesses of the Democrat autocracy are clearly visible. | Solutions dilute power, so the problems just grow. | Issa did not start the recall. It was a pre-existing brushfire that lighted his way. He had to be pulled into the battle and initially refused. | Issa’s money bought only one third of the signatures. The rest were volunteers and the sponsors had trouble STOPPING them from coming in long after Issa’s paid people were laid off. | Prop 54 fell victim solely to a massive illegal dodge by the Indians around our ineffective campaign contributions laws. They financed a lieing No on 54 campaign to feature Mecha Bustamente. | Please understand, the recall was a fail safe mechanism. “In case of fire break glass.” | If we were any country, the IMF would be in here demanding that we reconstruct everything. | If we were in the EEU, (unless we were France) we would be sanctioned. | Well we have no IMF and no EEU sanctions, so we had to do it ourselves. | As such, you are simply off base on this analysis.

[10/9/03 Thursday]

[John Mark Reynolds] 5:59 am
Republicans can win: The silliest line from the Democrats on the media election night was that "Arnold is not a typical Republican" and this great victory means nothing for the President or Republicans in California. This is balderdash for two reasons. First, conservatives showed, by and large, that they have strong stomachs. Many of us voted for our second choice, because he could win. Conservative leaders led the way almost universally in giving Arnold a chance. Hugh Hewitt was a real leader in this movement. Conservative talk radio is in a time of transition. Having out grown its "gee whiz someone agrees with me on the radio" stage, listeners are looking for more knowledge. Hewitt is poised to become the Next Big Thing, especially in California. Republicans can unite and can win in California. Second, Republicans can now govern the state. I bet there is an economic boom coming. We are winning the war. By next year, AS may be made to look like a genius just by the turn of events. If he holds firm, and backs Bush, I believe Bush can carry California. Even if he looks like he can carry California, Democrats will lose. To be competitive the Dems cannot afford to spend money here. If AS does a good job, then Republicans of all sort, including my social conservative sort will prosper. Just one delightful hypothetical for the future: An AS endorsed social conservative lieutenant governor in the next full governor election. If AS succeeds, his ticket will also win. . . and then become a plausible figure for governor in turn. We can demand moderates behave as we have behaved Tuesday night.

[Reader Scott Dillard] 5:58 am
DemMelt:Two quick thoughts about the aftershock of defeat. Tuesday night I saw Jesse Jackson whining about massive disenfranchisement in LA. I think a few people had to walk a couple of blocks to a different polling place. With a win this big, if the Democrat/ACLU/Jesse axis of evil tries to take this to court it will destroy any credibility they have that they believe in our system. The second event I saw on the news at 5 yesterday morning. State Senator John Vasconcellos stating angrily that he has no reason to work with the new governor. He is outraged. I sent a message to his office suggesting that if he feels that angry, perhaps he should resign in protest.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:55 am
Starting Gate:
Arnold Schwarzenegger seemed confident and ready to go in his press conference yesterday. How heartening to hear him affirm his commitment to not raising taxes. It will be interesting in the days ahead to see whether the Democrats are smart enough to refrain from attacking him right away, or whether -- in their spite and bitterness -- they just can't help themselves.

[Reader Scott Dillard] 5:53 am
Bay Blues: I loved this. Angela Alioto, who is running for mayor of San Francisco (again), had this great quote in the SF Examiner yesterday. Regarding the recall and the election in general, she said that the discrepancy between San Francisco and the rest of the state was "so typical". She continued, "It goes to show that San Francisco is a very special place and the rest of the state just doesn't get it". Earth to Angela: we do, we do.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:51 am
Clarification: Tuesday's entry referenced a criminal record of Rhonda Miller, one of Arnold Schwarzenegger's eleventh-hour accusers. Subsequently, it has been revealed that the "Rhonda Miller" with the criminal record is NOT the Rhonda Miller who accused Arnold Schwarzenegger of improper behavior. I regret the error. Rhonda Miller, the accuser, has no known criminal record. Her account of Arnold's behavior, however, continues to be contradicted by two contemporaneous witnesses.

[10/8/03 Wednesday]

[Doug Gamble] 5:58 am
Large and in charge: Although some pundits said the gubernatorial debate in which Arnold Schwarzenegger appeared would make no difference to the campaign, it was the turning point in his big victory last night. It joins the Nixon-Kennedy debates in 1960 and Ronald Reagan's debate with President Jimmy Carter in 1980 as an event where a face-off between or among candidates was crucial. | Up until the debate Schwarzenegger had been stalled in the polls. But his performance was strong enough to convince a majority of voters that he was viable as governor, and he never looked back. People who were looking for a reason to feel confident about him, but were hedging, had their doubts put to rest in that debate. A major reason that last minute charges of bawdy behavior against Schwarzenegger did not hurt him is because so many minds were inalterably made up about him in the all-candidate "Super Bowl." | It is Schwarzenegger's communications skills, honed as an actor but a natural outgrowth of his self-confidence and determination, that will make him formidable in office, as his opponents in Sacramento are going to find out. As he leads California into a new era he is going to leave Democrats -- with apologies to the L.A. Times -- groping for answers.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:55 am
Well, Arnold did it -- or rather, the people of California did it! The exact numbers will soon be available, but it's clear that Californians completely repudiated several things last night: left-wing special interest politics; arrogant and out-of-touch political elites; and, as emphatically, the partisan dishonesty of The Los Angeles Times. | No one can deny that there are many issues to sort out, or that many challenges lie ahead. And it is disappointing that the propositions, especially the Racial Privacy Initiative, were so soundly defeated. Even so, it is a day for cheer and thanksgiving, because the people of California knew what needed to be done in order to save the state -- and they stepped up to the plate.

[10/7/03 Tuesday]

[Jon Coupal] 6:38 pm
Misquoted by The L.A. Times Dear Editor: In your October 5 edition, Jennifer Oldham, in her story on efforts to roll back the car tax, says, "But Jon Coupal, president of the [Howard Jarvis] taxpayers association, acknowledged that rescinding the hike could require court action." | I did not acknowledge, say, state, imply, or even hint that this might be the case. As an attorney and expert in tax policy, it is my unequivocal opinion that a new governor can rescind the illegal raising of the car tax with the stroke of a pen.| Sincerely, Jon Coupal - President, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

[John Mark Reynolds] 5:38 pm
Shellshock: The recall seems to have driven national commentators quite mad. Howard Fineman writes, "But in an odd but important way, an Arnold victory could be an ominous message for President Bush." It would be very odd if a victory by a major Bush supporter sends a message of woe to George Bush. I have a more straightforward prediction: if the President's party wins, then it is good for the Republicans. Mr. Fineman asserts that Arnold may represent frustration with the establishment like Perot and others. Well, it seems simpler to say that Arnold represents frustration with raising taxes. How that frustration will harm the Great Tax Cutter Bush is beyond me, but I am perfectly willing to engage Mr. Fineman in a debate on this topic on Hardball.

[Shawn Steel] 3:55 pm
Exit Polling: As of two o'clock this afternoon........... | RECALL - YES - 57% NO - 43% | CANDIDATES - Schwarzenegger - 46% Bustagonzo - 34% McClintock - 13% | TURNOUT - Projecting out to over 70%, perhaps over 75%

[Streetsweeper] 12:45 pm
T-shirt Follies: Fellow Bear Flag Leaguer The Irish Lass had a tough lesson in citizenship today... And the price she paid for wearing a “JoinArnold” t-shirt to cast her vote... Here’s her story as posted at Calblog... [Harassing Poll Workers I just returned from voting where I was harassed by a poll worker. | Today I entered my polling place and the poll worker told me I had to take off my shirt. It was perfectly obvious that I didn't have anything on under my shirt but a bra. I said are you serious. He said yes, you can't wear that, it's electioneering. I said it's a shirt. He said I don't care, you can't wear it in this garage - take it off. I said I don't have anything else to wear. He said I don't care - take it off. Another poll worker went inside her house to get a blanket that I could wrap around myself to vote. I voted, crying the whole time. I came out and gave him my ballot. I told him I had never before had an unpleasant experience voting but that he was a real jerk. With a stupid grin on his face, he said you can call the election office. I said I will. I did. | I've also called both Arnold's and Ted Costa's organizations and told them about the incident to see if they want to take any legal action. I'll get over it, but it's important that over-zealous poll workers don't prevent our volunteers from getting out the vote this afternoon and evening. If by harassing me they are prevented from harassing our other volunteers, I won't mind.]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 12:03 am
It's Here!
Well, today's the day! Whatever you do, please, PLEASE take the time to go out and vote "Yes!" on the recall, and "Yes!" for Arnold Schwarzenegger. | The lies that have swirled throughout the anti-Arnold opposition will take eons to unravel, but I hope some honest journalists will take the time to do the heavy lifting. In an appearance yesterday on MSNBC, I challenged Jodi Evans of Code Pink directly -- she has been instrumental in urging Arnold's "victims" to come forward -- with accounts that she was a colleague of Gray Davis' during their Jerry Brown days, is a longtime Democratic operative, and a friend of Bob Mulholland. She denied having had contact with Davis since 1982 and alleged that she had been registered as an "independent" for the past 13 years. That would be an interesting one to check out...| And yesterday evening around 9:00, I received a recorded message from the "Council for Concerned Women." The message urged me to vote for Tom McClintock against Arnold because of his "character issues" and so that we could get a "real Republican" governor in 2006. But WAIT! There is no such group as the "Council for Concerned Women" (they are trying to confuse conservatives who are vaguely familiar with the conservative group "Concerned Women for America"). And this message was NOT from the McClintock campaign -- it solicited a NO vote on the Racial Privacy Initiative. Wonder who was behind that? | Many have been warning that the stories about Arnold's past won't die on Election Day, and maybe they're right. That's OK. We all should know what he has (and hasn't!) done. But my prediction is that, in the end, those who have tried to smear him will emerge far more disgraced than Arnold is. | Bill Bradley has reported in the LA Weekly that Gray Davis' advisors knew about The Los Angeles Times story well in advance of its publication . . . it should be interesting to see how that plays out for both the Davis operatives and their handmaidens at The Times. And Arnold's new accuser, one Rhonda Miller, has had her story contradicted by two contemporaneous witnesses -- even as her rap sheet, including multiple arrests for prostitution, was disclosed yesterday on KFI . . . it should be interesting to see how that plays out for her attorney, Gloria Allred. | Things look good for the recall and for Arnold . . .Yes, today's the day to remove the Davis cancer from the body politic of California.

[Doug Gamble] 12:01 am
Shockwave: In the words of a song written by the late Steve Allen, this could be the start of something big. The gubernatorial recall process that struggled to start, then sputtered, then kicked into gear on the high octane of Rep. Darrell Issa's cash flow, will likely culminate tonight in the removal of Gov. Gray Davis and a new direction for California. | Once again the Golden State is blazing a trail. Much of the rest of the country, laughing at us just a short while ago, must now realize there's a revolution going on and it, as usual, will be late to the party. The California jokes have faded or are falling flat as our state's special dance with democracy dominates newspaper front pages and the all-news channels, and the heavyweight network news anchors come west to be present at the creation. The ouster of Davis, should it occur, will send a message to the leadership in the 17 other states with a recall process and to politicians in general who want to keep their jobs: Be responsive to your voters. Stick to your work. Tell the truth. Respect the taxpayers' money. Don't take your office for granted. Lead. | It was 25 years ago that a California taxpayers' revolt gave birth to Proposition 13 to limit property tax increases, and within five years nearly half the states had adopted similar legislation. The California recall may well herald a "throw the bums out" mindset that will sweep the country and give pause to politicians who have grown too fat and complacent. | Everyone who loves democracy would like to be a Californian today. Those of us who are Californians have a special responsibility in the hours ahead. We have history to make.

[10/6/03 Monday]

[Streetsweeper] 11:45 am
Steel on McCllintock: Shawn Steel is an Arnold guy, but check out these comments from Shawn on Tom McClintock: [He's established himself as the leader of conservative economic thinking in California and a fresh new voice for economic reason nationally," said Shawn Steel, a fellow conservative and former state GOP chairman. "He's a new pop star for conservatives."]

[Reader Scott Dillard - From the Ebag] 11:23 am
The Rising: So here we sit the day before the recall. From the panic in the Davis camp, it would almost be worth the hour's drive just to sit in Capitol Park and watch the smoke billow out of Davis' windows as the staff burns the papers. Perhaps they really do see that crowd with pitchforks coming down the street. Wow.

[Brian Janiskee -Cal. State, San Bernardino & Claremont Institute] 11:07 am
Who Wins? How Much? Recall:Yes 60 percent No 40 percent Replacements: Schwarzenegger 40% Bustamante 30% McClintock 20% | The accusations against Schwarzenegger compounded with the appearance that Arnold will still win may, oddly enough, boost McClintock's numbers. Some Republicans who may have considered holding their noses and voting for Schwarzenegger may decide to vote their conscience, knowing that it in all likelihood such a vote would not cost the GOP a victory.

[Streetsweeper] 7:40 am
Hewitt on the Times Slimes: "Whether or not we can ever draw a conclusion on the electoral impact of the smear, the Times' decision to print anonymous allegations of harassment will remain a low point in American journalism. One wonders what would have been the result of the 2002 race and the recall if there had been a major paper in California devoted to fair reporting of Davis and his Sacramento sponsors." [more at Hewitt's blog]

[Glenn Ellmers - The Claremont Institute] 5:05 am
Who Wins? How Much? Arnold, but by a smaller margin than last week's polls indicated. The damage from the sexual accusations will be minor, UNLESS something more serious surfaces (though even something explosive on Monday would likely be too late). I also think that that there will be more votes for the 130 unknowns than predicted, at least in part due to voter confusion (oy vey!). The yes on the recall question itself will be close--single digits.

[Xrlq -] 5:05 am
Who Wins? How Much? I predict that the Gropenator will lose a few votes here and there, though not enough to sink him. In a way, this is unfortunate, as Arnold's victory will quickly extinguish most of the public anger that is currently being directed at the LA Times, the National Enquirer, the New York Times, the Drudge Report, ABC, and all the other "news" agencies that have been dropping their last-minute stink bombs. Once the election is over, as long as Arnold ends up on top, your average joe will shrug and say "no harm, no foul," reinstate his recently cancelled subscription to the Dog Trainer, and basically forget that the whole thing ever happened. Meanwhile, political strategy geeks will crunch their numbers and form a very different conclusion: "Puke politics works! It shaved Arnold's lead by X%, so next time, direct the puke at an opponent who's leading by X% or less." | I do not believe that the bogus Nazi story will hurt Arnold. That story is so transparently stupid that if it has any effect at all, it will help Arnold, though probably not by a big enough margin to offset the effect of the more credible groping stories. If political strategists are savvy enough to catch this, the message they get will be more nuanced, along the lines of "puke on, but next time be a little more careful about what you puke on whom, and when." | The worst possible outcome would be for any of Arnold's misconduct, real or imagined, to have any impact whatsoever on the recall itself (i.e., question 1). There is nothing Arnold Schwarzenegger, Cruz Bustamante, Georgy Russell, Trek Thunder Kelly, David Laughing Horse Robinson, George W. Bush, Xrlq, or anyone else on God's green earth - save Gray Davis himself - can do to make Gray Davis himself any less worthy of a recall. In every other gubernatorial election we've had in this state, voting to fire the incumbent without also voting to install his top challenger was not really an option. This time, it is. Take advantage of that rare opportunity; you're unlikely ever to have it again.

[Eric Hogue - radio talk show host KTKZ - Sacramento] 5:05 am
Who Wins? How Much?
I believe the actual vote will closely reflect the past four polls. I'm looking for the "Yes on Recall" to win by a 54-46% margin, if not larger. (Remember, the margin of victory is VERY important, careful NOT to get overconfident!) | Arnold Schwarzenegger is California's next Governor. Arnold will pull 38% of the vote, While Cruz Bustamante will finish with 31%, State Senator Tom McClintock will show at a respectable, 'futuristic position' of 20% and Green Party Peter will settle the waters at 4%.| The "Dirty Thursday" tactics directed toward the Schwarzenegger campaign WILL cause the first question to grow 'thinner' heading into Tuesday election. Encouraging the 'ultra, true conservative voters' to find it abhorrent to vote for Arnold, so they toss in with Tom. | The Democrats know they are losing this election and the governor's office, so the "desperate Democrats do and say desperate things"! The strategy from the Democrat Party is to grow the top half of the ballot to as 'thin' of a victory as possible and turn loose the courts (again) after the certification of a 'close' election. (Using labor union 'volunteers' on election day, to find disgruntled voters and elements of disenfranchised voters and voting to hang their last hopes upon.) | The Democrats will not 'win' the election, nor will they 'win' this "thirteenth' recall court battle that will follow, but they will be able to 'seal a message for their core' that the Republican Party stole the election between Bush v. Gore 2000 in the courtroom and 'now they have done the same thing' in California's 2003 Recall Election. This will afford the Democrat Party more applicable ammo for the battle starting immediately after this recall finale...the 2004 Campaign! | How will the Republican Party message heading into November, looking forward to the 2004 campaign? | One thing that must be taken care of immediately is the General Election Ballot for November 2004. Right now the President is NOT on that ballot, due to scheduling a late September Republican National Convention in New York City (California Election law mandates that the party nominee is submitted by early August). The State Senate passed a measure on this issue before the close of session this Fall. As it stands right now, this piece of legislation has not been signed, but numerous Republicans I spoke to, told me they expect the signing to happen soon. But...if there is a hold-up of this measure, an Arnold win means nothing for President George W. Bush if he is NOT on the California ballot for November 2004. | Stay tuned, this could be one of MANY "recall return serves" from lead Democrat's, both nationally and statewide!

[Ben Boychuck - Managing Editor The Claremont Review of Books The Claremont Institute] 5:05 am
Who Wins? How Much? The recall passes with 53% yes -- wide enough to be significant, but close enough not to be considered a landslide, at least by the estimation of TV and the L.A. Times. Schwarzenegger wins question two with 40%. Bustamante gets 35%, McClintock gets 20%, and the freaks split up the rest. I think the late hits on Arnold prevent him from crushing Davis and Bustamante utterly, but they don't cost him the election. This isn't 1992.

[Martha Montelongo - commentator, radio talk show host] 5:05 am
Who Wins? How Much? At the end of the day, the recall will prevail by a slim three to five percent margin. The more than two million who signed the petition are representative of the general disgust the citizens of California have for the governor, his negligence, incompetence and reckless pandering and concessions to the special interests in his efforts of trying to save his position. | The puke campaign will damage the lead the Yes on the Recall and Schwarzenegger have enjoyed over the last week following the big televised debate. But it will also damage Davis further. He is seen as responsible for this eleventh hour assault on the front runner's character. | McClintock's supporters will be pivotal to the success of the recall campaign. Their support for the recall is essential. Their yes vote to recall governor Davis is critical to spare California from ending up with a scorned governor who would gloat and punish all of those he could, who joined the campaign to remove him. | Moderate Republicans and a vast swath of conservative Republicans, disgruntled, disgusted and disenchanted Democrats, already being referred to as the Recall Democrats, will make Schwarzenegger the winner. McClintock's numbers will remain the same, although they will be the result of both an exodus of supporters who elect to vote for Arnold to insure beating Bustamante and they will be evened out by the number of voters who abandon Arnold as a result of the the puke campaign.

10/4/03 [Saturday]

[Nicholas X. Winter] 8:05 am
Progressive Groping: So, how are we to judge the alleged misbehavior of our wannabe political leaders? Well, we should be reminded of the lesson taught us by the leader of the Progressive women’s movement, Gloria Steinem. In an NY Times op-ed March 22, 1998 Ms. Steinem informed us that “no means no; yes means yes.” Remember, this was all surrounding the Kathleen Willey affair. Willey said “no” and Mr. Clinton stopped. According to Ms. Steinem this is all perfectly fine because Mr. Clinton acted responsibly - “no means no.” | If you remember her liberated direction to the rest of us was summed up as the “one free feel rule” aka “OFFR.” So, we’ve got to logically consider this Arnold problem from a liberated and Progressive point of view. Frankly, the question is not did Arnold do these things, but did the women say “no?” And, if they said nothing, does silence mean “yes” or “no?” | You know, the L.A. Times doesn’t seem to be very Progressive in their investigation. Did they do a proper calculus of yes and no? And even then, there’s always the Steinem OFFR – you don’t get to the “yes” or “no” with the grope first... see? - OFFR. So, what is all this selective outrage? What’s a Progressive to do? Hmmm... Ah, here’s how Ms. Steinem concludes her prescient observations... “There seems to be sympathy for keeping private sexual behavior private. Perhaps we have a responsibility to make it O.K. for politicians to tell the truth -- providing they are respectful of ‘no means no; yes means yes’ -- and still be able to enter high office, including the Presidency. Until then, we will disqualify energy and talent the country needs -- as we are doing right now.” Presidency? Heck, we’re only talking governor here... Thanks, Gloria...Thanks, Bill...I feel much better...

10/3/03 [Friday]

[Doug Gamble] 11:45 am
Arnold Smackdown: Just in case there are people who take seriously the report that Arnold Schwarzenegger admires Adolph Hitler, the gubernatorial candidate should move quickly to put their minds at ease. He should issue a statement as soon as possible promising that, if elected governor next Tuesday, California will not invade Poland. | Also, I understand the Los Angeles Times is coming out with another accusation tomorrow that could will succeed in sinking the Schwarzenegger campaign. It will apparently quote an anonymous source who claims that Schwarzenegger once criticized Philadelphia Eagles' quarterback Donovan McNabb.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:55 am
Backfire? The Los Angeles Times is learning what it's like to be so hated by those it purports to serve that its opprobrium is treated as a badge of honor. Arnold Schwarzenegger's campaign continues with great enthusiasm, undeterred by the smut and the partisanship of what Hugh Hewitt has called "The L.A. Slimes." More will be coming . . . but this time, it may not be enough to carry the Democrats over the finish line. Despite what many journalists in the elite media seem to think, Californians are smart, and they are fair. What's being done to Arnold has all the hallmarks of an eleventh-hour Hail Mary pass, complete with the stench of Democratic flop sweat. For anyone who has even been considering a vote for McClintock -- please reconsider. Now more than ever, it's important to send a message both to the Democrats in Sacramento and the entire rotten L.A. Times brigade that their last minute desperate smears won't work. Vote for Arnold, and by doing so, teach the L.A. Times just how insignificant it has become.

[Doug Gamble] 5:46 am
Time(s) Bomb: During Bob Dole's presidential campaign in 1996, word came that The Washington Post was developing a story containing accusations that the Republican candidate had cheated on his wife, Elizabeth, during their marriage. Some of us working on the campaign expressed the view, only half in jest, that a story portraying Dole as a swinger would do him more good than harm, especially in liberal, tolerant California where it might give him a boost in the polls. For whatever reason the story never appeared, and womanizing turned out to be one more area where Bill Clinton had Dole beat. | If The Los Angeles Times hadn't spent the last 7 weeks researching charges of ribald behavior by Arnold Schwarzenegger toward women, Arnold's campaign would have been wise to give them the information. Not only will the revelations in the story not do Schwarzengeer any harm, they actually helped him by allowing him to show a classy, sensitive side when he later admitted to past mistakes and apologized. When Gray Davis read the Times' story he probably slapped his head and said, "Damn! Why couldn't that be about me?" | California is the last state where accusations like those against Schwarzenegger will harm a candidate, except for one who makes morality a cornerstone of a campaign. If you want to sink a California politician, accuse him of opposing cosmetic surgery, denigrating yoga or wanting an extra tax on latte. But bawdy behavior on a movie set? Gimmie a break. The L.A. Times story wasn't puke politics, it was puny politics.

10/2/03 [Thursday]

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:05 am
Puke-Nuke? Well, in an appearance on CNN International, I just finished predicting (along with many others) that the Democrats would drop an 11th-hour "stink bomb" since it looks like they are otherwise going to lose. And here it is. The Los Angeles Times is reporting that Arnold allegedly "groped" and "humiliated" six women between 1975 and 2000. Unlike Clinton partisans, no Republican should say that such allegations, even if true, wouldn't really matter. They certainly would. And no one should say such allegations are just "old news" -- though they are. But there is something in the timing, the messenger and several sources' insistence on anonymity that arouses suspicion. Three of the four anonymous sources allege that they fear "reprisal" in Hollywood if their names go on the record. Something there makes no sense. After all, if Arnold did behave inappropriately with them, he'd know who they are and could identify them to the Hollywood community anyway. And that's even assuming that these women wouldn't become heroines to the Hollywood elites who comprised Arianna's less-than-one-half-of-one-percent constituency. Does anyone else become suspicious when a newspaper that has been relentlessly anti-Arnold concludes a seven-week-long investigation just five days before an election? It doesn't pass the "smell test" when that newspaper goes on to base very serious charges on the word of six sources, four of whom have chosen to remain anonymous -- which prevents readers from assessing their credibility and drawing their conclusions accordingly. After all, the account of one of the named accusers is disputed by a contemporaneous female witness. The other named accuser concedes that Arnold might have meant his behavior to be "playful" -- as she relates an incident that transpired in 1975 at Gold's Gym. Fundamental notions of justice argue against allowing unnamed women to hurl accusations that, by their anonymous nature, offer the Schwarzenegger campaign a Hobson's choice -- either to defend themselves and reveal the women's identities and surrounding circumstances, or keep quiet and take the punishment. That's why -- when they're on trial -- defendants have the right to confront their accuser. But in this scenario, the Los Angeles Times just wants us to trust that they'll be fair, though little of their coverage would justify any confidence in their impartiality. In a sense, the Times has become both judge and jury. Executioner? Hopefully not. As for these anonymous sources, it seems to me that if a woman is willing to speak to the newspapers and make very serious charges that have the potential to ruin a man's reputation, she ought to have the guts to give her name (unless, of course, she had filed charges, which none of these women have). Most of all, I'm waiting for Bob Mulholland and the rest of the Clinton defenders to assure us that these accusations have nothing to do with Arnold's fitness for office.

[Carol Platt Liebau] 5:01 am
Lefties for Tom: None other than the very liberal OC Weekly is endorsing Tom McClintock for governor in an intriguing cover article by progressive Scott Moxley. At first, one might suspect that, like Arianna and Cruz, Moxley comes to praise McClintock only in order to bury Arnold. But setting such cynicism aside, Moxley's idea is a novel one. He apparently believes that California's left-wing legislature would prevent McClintock from acting on a conservative social agenda, but that McClintock could restore fiscal sanity to state government. It's an interesting argument . . . one wonders why no liberals were making it when, say, Bill Simon ran for governor last year. Moxley deserves credit for political guts and creativity; however, I think he underestimates the irrational antipathy and intolerance exhibited by the leftists in the legislature. In fact, to me, it seems equally likely that with McClintock as governor -- given the legislature's lunacy and McClintock's demonstrated inability to compromise -- California would resemble nothing so much as a car careening off a cliff while the two passengers in the front seat fight for control of the steering wheel.

10/1/03 [Wednesday]

[Joe Armendariz] 10:15 am
On Hewitt - Say What?? The most amusing aspect of Hugh Hewitt's latest assault on Tom McClintock was his use of Bill Clinton to make a point. "A vote for Tom is a vote for Bill Clinton". Oh? Come on Hugh; the only connection between McClintock and Clinton is that of the 4 major players in the Recall (Davis, Cruz, Arnold and Tom), McClintock is probably the only one of the who never cast a vote for the disgraced former President. Need I remind Hewitt of Arnold's embarrassment at being a Republican during the Clinton impeachment? | In fact, a few days ago, Sean Hannity asked Arnold to clarify those feelings and once again Arnold gave Clinton a pass by refusing to say what the former President did was wrong, let alone illegal. Hugh describes Clinton's presidential shortcomings this way: a misuse of the office and breaking of his oath. Hugh even goes so far as to remind readers of the fact that Clinton continues to believe, to this day, that his problems in office were the result of the far-right-wing. Apparently Arnold agrees with this assessment. | And yet, in spite of the cozy relationship that exists between Clinton's revisionist history, Hewitt's histrionics and Arnold's see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil approach to the former philanderer-in-chief, a vote for Tom McClintock is in no way, shape or form, a vote for Bill Clinton, Cruz Bustamante or the Los Angeles Times, as Hugh suggests. And lest there be some more absurdities loitering in his otherwise sensible head, let's be clear about something else; a vote for Tom is not a vote for Saddam Hussein, Osama Bin Laden, Global Warming, AIDS, World Hunger or the Anti-Christ. | I will continue admiring Hugh Hewitt, because he is a fine man and has a keen intellect. But, I must confess that I am offended by his characterization of what a vote for Tom McClintock represents. And make no mistake about it, on Tuesday October 7th, I will cast my vote for the man who I believe came into the race equipped with the right set of values, best ideas and clearest understanding of what California needs to return to its former glory. And that man is Tom McClintock.

[Streetsweeper] 7:40 am
Times Poll Hits Reality. Reality Wins: Looks like the paper of record for the West Coast has given up trying to skew the numbers. In their latest poll the Times can’t even get Lord Gray into the margin of error – he loses 56% to 42%. Yikes! Arnold is pulling ahead. Cruz is slipping big, Tom is slipping a little. This go-around the Times seemed not to cook the numbers to get the story they wanted – namely to Save Gray or at least Get By With Cruz. And knowing how they tend to “over sample” key groups in the poll numbers, you gotta suspect that the real numbers are much, much worse. And to put a bow on it...Progressives have gotta be shaking their heads at the fact that Latinos are about 50% in Arnold’s favor. What are you gonna do when you can’t count on a core constituency? AND McClintock wins the character vote with 3 out of 4 polled saying that “he has the character and integrity to be governor.” What’s a Progressive to do? The Actor is trouncing the field and everybody admires the Conservative. The Progressive Agenda might be running out of gas. Memo to Mulholland: time for the Puke-Nuke.


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