Haynes is an Assembly member representing Riverside and Temecula.
He serves on the Appropriations and Budget Committees. [go to
Assembly Member Haynes
website at California Assembly]
Extremist, Fringe Democrats with Goofy Ideas
Unfortunately, they're in charge...
[Ray Haynes] 7/28/03
The biggest story this past week (besides the recall) was the “secret” meeting
of several Democrats in which they plotted to hold up the budget for political
gain. This would cause people pain, so they would then try to blame Republicans
for shutting down the government, and hopefully increase the pressure sufficiently
to force Republicans to vote for tax increases. Of course, they held this meeting
in the Capitol, and left the microphone on in the meeting room. Just about every
office, the entire press corps, and most of the lobbying community then heard
the discussions held in their secret meeting. I guess you could chalk up another
political blunder to term limits. The entire event was a rookie mistake.
to defuse the situation, the Director of Finance from the Governor’s
Office, referred to them simply as “kooky, extremist,
fringe democrats with goofy ideas”. Many of my Republican
friends have speculated that the Democrats in the Assembly
are extremist, and we know that their ideas are goofy, but
it is nice that a long-time Democrat legislator finally publicly
acknowledges their extremism and goofiness, even if it was
only to try and make light of a grievous error.
problem is that these goofy people run one house of the Legislature.
They are the chairs of the Education, Natural Resource, Long-Term
Care and Aging Committees, and their decisions actually affect
people. When they plot to hold up the budget, which would hurt
people, they have enough votes to make it happen. They accuse
Republicans of wanting to destroy California, but Republicans
barely have enough votes to stop a tax increase, much less
change policy in California.
That is why
this “secret” meeting was such an interesting event.
Three months ago, Assembly Republicans proposed the first complete
budget plan for the Assembly. Democrats had been having meetings
for months, but took no action. Republicans decided to take
the initiative to prove that the budget could be balanced with
no new taxes. They also said that the details of the budget
were negotiable, and invited the Democrats to sit down at the
table and negotiate. Assembly Democrats stood silent. They
refused to negotiate.
the Assembly Republicans fine tuned their proposal, and once
again invited the Democrats to negotiate. The response of the
Democrat majority was to put the budget on the floor, and spend
four hours bashing the plan. During that entire time, they
proposed no plan of their own, refused to negotiate on our
budget proposal, and, quite frankly, chose, once again, to
take absolutely no action on advancing the budget.
with that approach to the budget is that they are the majority
party. Nothing can happen unless those in the majority want
it to happen. They have the votes; they run the house. If they
do nothing, the state goes bankrupt, and they are doing nothing.
They have chosen to attack Republicans rather than negotiate
in good faith.
That is a
compliment to Republicans in the Assembly. A party that is
confident in their agenda and ideas can take the criticism.
A confident majority allows the minority to criticize, works
with them where they can, but take responsibility for their
actions when they can’t. If the majority knows the public
is with them, they do not fear the exercise of power.
of the acquisition of power is to implement a policy agenda.
If the elected official is afraid the implementation of that
policy agenda would cost him or her power, then they have a
choice. They can be honest with people and abandon the agenda,
or lose power. If they cannot be honest, and keep power, they
have the wrong agenda.
had the courage to stand behind their agenda. Democrats ran
for the hills. Under those circumstances, who should be running