Eber: Appearance and Reality in California Politics

There is a bill, AB 2923 that takes away the right of zoning and permitting for new developments cities and counties—giving them to the government transportation system—is this case, BART.  Once passed, other cities will lose their right of controlling development—and an unelected agency will become the Masters of development—ripe for corruption.  Then you have Dianne Feinstein, the long, long, long time Senator from San Fran deemed Progressive enough by only 7% of the California Democrat Party Executive Committee—and the radical Kevin De Leon was given the endorsement of the statewide Democrats.

“As an indication De Leon was recently endorsed at the State Democratic Convention despite trailing so far in the polls and the past dependable liberal leadership Diane Feinstein has displayed during her long career.

This tells me there is more uncertainty among California voters than meets the eye. Many folks are concerned that the legislature’s distain for business is resulting in good jobs leaving the State.  Some are worried that high taxes, pension liabilities, over regulation, and lack of affordable housing do not bode well for the Golden State’s future.

As an indication of this worry about the future we have Proposition 6 which repeals the gas and vehicle registration increases passed last year. If the demographic base of California voters is so progressive and liberal, why would this measure that is opposed by Gavin Newsom and virtually every other prominent Democrat, have a reasonable chance of being approved?

At the same time the Socialist Newsom could be elected Governor and the Socialist De Leon, to the Left of Socialist Feinstein could win in any upset, we could also repeal a $779 per year tax on gas and vehicle registrations—are California voters bi-polar?  Looks like it.

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Appearance and Reality in California Politics by Richard Eber

Richard Eber, California Political News and Views,  8/16/18

As they used to say in the trade “something is wrong with this picture”.  In the community of Concord where I live the City Council released a poll they commissioned that stated two thirds of the voters would pass a one half sales tax increase the City Manager was proposing for the upcoming election

These funds were earmarked for improving roads for which a previous sales tax past four years ago was supposed to address.  Never the less, the opinion poll stated that voters would pass this measure.

Missing from this analysis that the local tax would make up for funds to be lost should State  Proposition 6 passes that would repeal  2017’s fuel tax and vehicle fee increases and requires public vote on future measures. The poll was also presented more as a wish list than a neutral pro and con analysis of the cities financial difficulties.

Also missing was the fact that in reality, over the half the funds raised by the new tax would end up being spent on expected increases the City would need to make to fund workers pensions in CalPERS.  As is the case in most communities, it is far easier to get voters to allocate funds to fix pot holes than repair a mismanaged pension program

In a surprise move two Concord City Council members voted to kill the sales tax increase thus keeping the proposal off the ballot.  These individuals reasoned there was not enough time to discuss the measure with citizens and was premature to put on the ballot given the present positive local business climate.

Also coming into play is the concept that to pass this measure, voters in effect would be expected to kill the unpopular State tax and approve the local one.  In this case we shall never know but logic is not always in play with California politics.  Nothing is what it seems.

Current polls show Progressive Democrat Gavin Newsom winning the Governorship by a landslide.  His views on gun control, the environment, Sanctuary Cities, Transgender rights, and universal health care for all, are virtually identical to senatorial candidate Kevin De Leon.

If this is the case why the heck is Newsom leading Republican John Cox by approximately 2 to 1 while De Leon trails his 84 year old opponent Diane Feinstein by a similar margin?  It might be said that these two races are much different because one features a Democrat vs. Republican while the Senate contest is between two liberal candidates.

If this is the case why would voters who overwhelmingly supported Kamala Harris not be in favor of Kevin de Leon who holds virtually the same progressive views on most issues?  It should be asked why the electorate would overwhelmingly support a candidate who likely will not be able to serve out her full term at aged 90?

With the strange case of Kevin de Leon and voters there may be a case of buyer’s remorse for some of the legislation he passed while being the Leader Pro Tem of the State Senate.  While the Sanctuary City Laws and Universal Health Care he helped gain approval for had widespread popularity among the Party faithful, less progressive democrats, decline to state, and all GOP members feel differently.

As an indication De Leon was recently endorsed at the State Democratic Convention despite trailing so far in the polls and the past dependable liberal leadership Diane Feinstein has displayed during her long career.

This tells me there is more uncertainty among California voters than meets the eye. Many folks are concerned that the legislature’s distain for business is resulting in good jobs leaving the State.  Some are worried that high taxes, pension liabilities, over regulation, and lack of affordable housing do not bode well for the Golden State’s future.

As an indication of this worry about the future we have Proposition 6 which repeals the gas and vehicle registration increases passed last year. If the demographic base of California voters is so progressive and liberal, why would this measure that is opposed by Gavin Newsom and virtually every other prominent Democrat, have a reasonable chance of being approved?

It makes no sense!

As a corollary to the schizophrenic nature of California voters, we have the underfunded campaign of Republican John Cox who is facing a well known opponent with tons of money and support from most media outlets.  Despite these overwhelming advantages, I would not be surprised to see Cox win at least 45% of the vote this November.

While many Californians’ don’t want a conservative Republican leading the State, they also are not all that enthusiastic about putting an individual in office whose liberal policies might endanger the livelihood of their families by providing a negative business environment.  Cox will also receive so called protest votes from ta large contingent of disenfranchised citizens.

As has been evidenced in my community and around the State, the citizenry is far from being united behind the Progressive Wave that is currently dominating the political scene in California.  Mixed messages that are not always covered in opinion polls, are still an integral part in predicting results at the ballot box.

Things can change in a hurry especially during poor economic times.  Let us not forget the triumphant election of Gray Davis in 1998 which was followed by his recall a year later. In this case Davis’s giveaway policies to the State’s workers were clearly stated in his campaign only to later explode in his face.

Who would have known what fate Davis would meet when he began his second term as California’s governor?

If Gavin Newsom is elected, he should learn a lesson to what befell the last Democratic Governor not named Jerry Brown. It is advised he be careful in trying to implement a Progressive agenda which is within an economic recession of Newsom ending up being  “FOB Sidewalk”

California voters have a short memory when their economic interests are compromised. Appearance and reality are often forces that are difficult to navigate

About Stephen Frank

Stephen Frank is the publisher and editor of California Political News and Views. He speaks all over California and appears as a guest on several radio shows each week. He has also served as a guest host on radio talk shows. He is a fulltime political consultant.