Gray Davis Resigns


Well, effectively, if not technically, given his insaniac speech yesterday in which he claims to be the victim of a vast Republican conspiracy. Goes the Wash Post's account:

What's happening here is part of an ongoing national effort by Republicans to steal elections they cannot win," Davis said in a major speech that aides said he spent over a week shaping to kick off a campaign to keep the job he was reelected to only last November.

Forget about the polls showing most Californians want Davis not simply to get the boot from the governor's mansion but from the Golden State altogether. And forget that biggest beneficiary so far of the recall is the Democratic Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamente. It really is all about stealing elections. None of it has to do with Davis's actions as governor.

NEXT: Meanwhile, in Colombia

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  1. First they murder Wellstone, now THIS!!!!

  2. Insaniac — intersting word choice.

    Hispanic governor — no, California had an interim hispanic governor in the 19th century.

    I totally agree that this line of argument “recalls are undemocratic” is a political bust.

  3. Pacheco was the most recent governor of Spanish ancestry, but he certainly wasn’t the only one. Here’s a complete list of all California’s governors, from 1804 to the present:

  4. Lefty,

    Just how can the Republicans “steal” the California recall election, without the help of a Democratic majority that’s decided Davis is a worthless piece of shit? I hate the mainstream establishment of both parties, but it’s nice to see the Clintonoid Davis and his supporters squealing like stuck pigs.

    As for the Greens, if the threat of the UAW and Teamsters bolting for Nader hadn’t put the fear of God into Gore and made him adopt a slightly more populist tone, he’d have run as a DLC clone right to the end and got his ass whipped even worse. And even with the pro-labor rhetoric, he still relied on Lieberman to reassure the WSJ that he didn’t really mean it.

    Not that Nader was any better. He was a grandstanding, hypocritical, union-busting (at the Multinational Monitor) piece of human garbage.

    I find it hysterical that anyone is gullible enough to divide these whores into “good guys” and “bad guys.”

  5. Brad S.-

    I’ll almost completely agree with you on the 2 parties and hypocrisy in election controversies. However, to grant Joe his fair point, it would be inaccurate to say that NONE of the Democrats and Republicans really cared about following the law, counting every vote, or whatever nice-sounding phrase they came up with.

    Most of them probably didn’t give a damn about principles, but there were probably a tiny few who did care. So let’s grant Joe that there were some exceptions, and then we can concede that in Florida concern for principle was rare on either side.

    And since I voted for Harry Browne, I didn’t want either side to win. So nobody can say I’m a Bush partisan or Gore partisan.

    My only wish for the California recall: Whatever happens, I hope the margin is decisive and cleanly won (i.e. no fraud, no irregularities, no voter intimidation, just fair and balanced, um, sorry, didn’t mean to infringe a trademark, I mean clean and fair elections).

  6. “Post analysis showed that Gore would have lost the Florida recount unless they did a full recount of the state”

    Post analysis showed no such thing. Post analysis shows only that the Florida vote was a statistical dead heat. Since an official recount would have been performed under different terms by different people there is no way for anyone to say what would have happened.

    “Why can’t they just be candid about their goals and stop trying to cloak it in left-style rhetoric about “TRULY helping people” or “REALLY solving the problem”.”

    Because, of course, the right is defined as pure evil, and no one on the right could possibly have any interest in humanity. Obviously the only answer for people concerned with others is that the state must continue to hand out other people’s money. It works so well.

    Please *stop* posting what you really think, I *can’t* take. You show only that you have fallen for the left’s anti-right propaganda more than the right’s pro-right propaganda. (This is not to disagree with Brad S.’s original thought.)

  7. The problem I have with all this (and trust me, I’m no Gray Davis fan) is the belief many seem to have that dumping Davis is the solution to what’s wrong with California. The problems were there long before Davis came along (though God knows he didn’t help) and they will be there long after he’s become the proverbial footnote in history.

    Still, I’m all in favor of giving Gray-out “the old heave-ho”…

  8. Kevin thinks this is Democrats wanting to dump Davis. That’s a laugh. Give me a million dollars and I can get 12% of any population to have a vote on whether pigs can fly or not.

  9. JDM,

    Easy now, I haven’t fallen for anything. Notice my lead statement was an indictment against BOTH sides.

    As for your last statement, to be fair, the right have their anti-left machine going too. Rush, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter and Michael Savage wouldn’t have jobs if they couldn’t make money doing one thing – talking about how much they hate the left.

    Sure they may occasionally be right but that doesn’t change the fact that they prove it’s easier to stir people up by being against something than for it.

    I personally am a cynic…I think they (right AND left) ALL suck…

  10. Yes Gore certainly would have won Fla if the democraps had managed to turn the unmarked ballots into Gore votes.

    Frankly given life in bushcroft’s Amerika I wish the dumbocrats had stolen the election, but maybe soon we’ll all be happy children in Hillary’s village.

  11. People who say a pox on both houses and either stay home or go to a 2% loony fringe party are chickenshits. I say choose your poison and fight for it or be rightfully ignored.

  12. JaxPax,

    Your statement that the right has no interest in making the world better, and is merely a hiding its nefarious designs behind rhetoric that is sincere when mouthed by left, is hardly an indictment of both sides.

    I’m not denying that the right has an anti-left machine, I’m just saying that your comments read exactly as the left’s anti-right machine would like them to.

    Sorry to hear about the cynicism.

  13. Lefty,

    Eh, I’ve been called worse. At any rate, my vote is my business. Not yours.

  14. “Post analysis showed no such thing. Post analysis shows only that the Florida vote was a statistical dead heat.”

    BS. Every recount showed Bush winning, except when a statewide recount was done using “counting methods” preferred by the Dems, but of questionable validity.

    As far as I know, none of the counts was a dead heat. A “statistical dead heat”, you say? More BS. Whoever wins the count wins the state, and Bush won every time when it was for real, and in almost every case when it wasn’t for real (i.e., post election).

  15. Lefty, I can think both sides suck and still focus on issues apart from subscribing to a specific idealogy…which is where a lot of people screw up in the first place….

  16. “Frankly given life in bushcroft’s Amerika I wish the dumbocrats had stolen the election, but maybe soon we’ll all be happy children in Hillary’s village.”

    Considering the Dems efforts at anti-terror legislation pre-9/11, I can’t agree with you. Whatever we got with Bush would likely be worse with Gore, and less effective.

  17. JDM, I see what you mean although I never said the right have no interest in making the world better. Of course they do – although what’s better according to a free market capitalist is not the same as what’s better according to an environmentalist.

    My point was that the right has lately adopted a disingenuous tone in their rhetoric and that is designed to try and appeal to people in the same fashion that leftist rhetoric does. My ultimate point was that it sounds better coming from the left.

    Basically, I’m attacking style, not substance

  18. Lefty – why do there only have to be two houses? Why not three? Why not five? Why not ten? I say the ones who claim to adhere to ideological principles but then fall for the rhetoric of either of the mainstream parties and thus fail to vote their consciences are the real chickenshits. Almost without exception, I disagree with the Green Party’s stance on issues, but I do respect the Green supporters for taking a stand against the mainstream Democratic party, with which they no longer see eye-to-eye ideologocially.

  19. Don

    Thus the ref to the happy village: it’d be “kinder and gen…” whoops that was someone else.

    Someone said that in 1964 when he told people he was going to vote for Goldwater they said “you vote for G and there’ll be 500000 US troops in Vietnam and we’ll be bombing the North” ,”I did any way and sure enough…”.

    Likewise I told everybody who wanted to vote for Gore that if they did we’d get socialized medicine, an intrusive security state and “humanitarian” invasions everywhere and anywhere.

    I voted for Harry Browne but for all the good that did I might just as well voted for both Gore and Buchanan, Whoops maybe I did, I am from Fla after all.

  20. I see Lefty’s point, in that our system doesn’t make room for more than 2 parties. You only have one vote (unlike, say, Instant Runoff Voting, where you rank candidates) and there’s only one winner (unlike legislative elections in a lot of countries, e.g. Switzerland), so supporting anybody other than one of the top 2 contenders is almost always a lost cause.


    1) It is noble to fight the good fight for a third party, and from time to time third parties do win offices. There’s usually a couple of third party state legislators around the US, there have been some third party governors, and there are a lot of third party local officials.

    2) Lefty sets up a false dichotomy between either picking a poison or being ignored. There’s also the option of being up for grabs. As a libertarian I consider myself fiscally conservative and socially liberal, so the stated positions of the 2 parties have some promise for me. By being a “swing voter” I can exercise power.

    I’ll take a Ron Paul Republican over an Al Gore Democrat any day. And I’ll take an ACLU Democrat over a George Bush Republican any day. By being open to the handful of good ones on each side I can actually have more influence than somebody who just picks his poison and sticks with it.

  21. “Rudy was not yet a hero at that point.”

    I know that but he would have had a much better shot than what’s-his-face.

  22. “Likewise I told everybody who wanted to vote for Gore that if they did we’d get socialized medicine, an intrusive security state and “humanitarian” invasions everywhere and anywhere.”

    Prior to 9/11, I think Bush was off to a pretty good start from a libertarian perspective. After 9/11 priorities changed towards security and intervension. This would have happened with Gore to some degree, except for the good start pre 9/11.

    Well, at least Bush isn’t pushing to get the assault rifle ban on his desk . . .

  23. The newspaper recounts that had Bush winning by a 200+ were done only on undervotes. A consortium of universities looking and both undervotes and overvotes put Gore ahead by several thousand.

    Funny: the one that put Bush ahead was all over the liberal media, but the one that put Gore ahead barely made the news.

  24. >>”Rudy was not yet a hero at that point.”

    >>I know that but he would have had a much better shot than what’s-his-face.

    I agree with you there.

  25. So, Lefty, I should vote for a candidate I absolutely hate and hold in contempt, just because he’s arguably 5% less evil than his opponent. Reminds me of that great line in the Kodos v. Kang election on The Simpsons: “A third party? Go ahead, throw away your vote!”

    Has it ever occurred to you that the establishment of both parties is aware of sentiments like yours, and cynically count on people like you, viewing you as a captive clientele? “I don’t have to quit whoring myself out to the DLC! What’re you gonna do, vote REPUBLICAN?? Haw, haw, haw!” The more you choose the lesser of evils, the more evil the lesser evil keeps getting.

    Sorry, I ain’t voting for a corporate whore like Al Gore, who supported Nafta, the Uruguay Round, the drug war, the military-industrial complex, IP “rights,” and the whole fucking corporatist infrastructure of state capitalism, just because he talks like an NPR liberal on social/lifestyle issues.

  26. Something I’ve noticed is that the actual recall of Davis in and of itself has been so overshadowed by the circus that it is now being treated as a done deal.

    No one is really even speaking anymore in terms of “if the recall goes through then so and so would be governor.”

    Now it seems to have just come down to Bustamove or Ahnuld though I personally think that McClintock as a chance to come along and be the “adult” among all of the children.

    It’ll be fun however it goes down.

  27. “And I’ll take an ACLU Democrat over a George Bush Republican any day.”

    What is an “ACLU Democrat?” A preemptive sore loser who sues to stall an election until the Democratic primary?

  28. Would Bustamante be California’s first hispanic Governor?

  29. Insaniac? Perhaps. In effect, a resignation speech? I don’t think so. The left-wing activists who are the yeomen of the Democratic Party and dominate primaries (and may well dominate this recall election) eat this stuff up. Remember the last insaniac who blamed her dopey problems on a vast right-wing conspiracy? She become senator of a large state to which she had no ties, and is talked about as the Democrats’ number one presidential contender in 2008.

  30. Hmm… Neither Carville nor Begala are on Crossfire this week… anyone heard from Blumenthal?

  31. His name may be Gray, but the citizens of California have given him a message in black and white…

  32. Stealing elections… Like South Dakota, New Jersey and Minnesota?

    Well yeah, if by stealing you mean “following the election laws as written”…

  33. Hillary won because A) Rudy didn’t run, B) name recognition, C) he “invaded her personal space” in the debate, D) it’s New York, it’s not exactly easy for a Republican to win there.

  34. Didn’t the Republican win in Minnesota? In other words, doesn’t “theft” (let’s not get into inchoate offenses here) require that the the thing stolen be taken?

  35. Clinton’s impeachment, stopping the count in Florida, and now the California recall. Republicans were losers at the polls in every case.

  36. I think that would be anyone who would defend constitutional rights, however unpopular at the time. Even yours.

  37. HH – true. NYC is full of Hillary-wannabes.

  38. And exactly what election laws did the Democrats violate in Minnesota? The bad taste at memorials law? 🙂

    As to South Dakota and New Jersey, this is just a case of sour grapes.

  39. “stopping the count in Florida”

    You mean the recount (which recount, the third?).

    Post analysis showed that Gore would have lost the Florida recount unless they did a full recount of the state — something Gore’s team was unlikely to call for (unless they had already exhausted every other counting permutation w/o getting their desired outcome), and unless very questionable means of counting the ballots were used.

  40. Okay, okay. To all the hardcore Repubs and Dems in here: can each of you just confess one thing? Regarding Florida in 2000, neither of you gave a rat’s hairy ass about “disenfranchised voters” or “the true count” or “following the Constitution” or any of that bullshit. Both of you wanted to WIN THE GODDAMN ELECTION. By whatever means necessary. Period. Is it so hard to just come out and admit that?

  41. Ha Ha, let the GOP steal California! That state is in such a mess, it will only take a bipartisan effort to put it on the right track, or a single libertarian can do it too, thank you very much.

    Actually, the best way for the GOP to “steal” California is by letting Gray Davis blunder his way through this current term.

  42. James – I agree. I love what’s going on in California right now. The losers are both major political parties. The winner is DEMOCRACY.

  43. HH: Rudy was not yet a hero at that point.

  44. JB,

    I seem to remember hearing that Bustamante could be the first CA governor in over a hundred years, thus implying a previous one.

  45. ooops! I meant HISPANIC CA governor!

  46. Mark A.,


  47. Brad S.,

    Politics is a contact sport. 🙂

  48. Amen to Brad S. I get sick of the disingenuous posturing that surrounds these issues – from both sides but particularly from the right.

    Why can’t they just be candid about their goals and stop trying to cloak it in left-style rhetoric about “TRULY helping people” or “REALLY solving the problem”. Everyone (except the diluded true liberals or conservatives) knows it’s just a bunch of crap.

    The left might be just as nuts but at least they SOUND more sincere.

    I’d have more respect for the right if they’d just talk straight…trust me, I can take it.

  49. They had Romualdo Pacheco, who served the last 9 months of Booth’s term when Booth became a senator (1875).

  50. The first California-born governor, Romualdo Pacheco was born in 1831 in Santa Barbara – long before California was to become a state. The only governor of Spanish ancestry, he grew up Spanish-speaking, but at school in Hawaii he learned French and English – and forgot Spanish entirely. Returning to California, he had to re-learn his native tongue. He was a rancher, a judge, State Senator, State Treasurer, and Lt. Governor. Since the legislature was not in session during his nine months as Governor, Pacheco’s brief term passed without real controversy or substance. While Governor, he killed a stag in Marin County, and the head and horns were mounted and hung in the Governor’s office. A true outdoorsman, he is the only governor who claimed to have lassoed a grizzly bear. In 1876, Pacheco ran for the U.S. House of Representatives and won by one vote.

  51. Brad S,

    You mean like the Green Party activists who turned out to demand a full and fair count? The ones who had spent the entire election working to defeat Gore, who then stood on principle to try to make the state do a fair ballot count?

    I guess they really just wanted a Gore victory all around.

  52. Lefty: It makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside to know that when the ACLU brings these idiotic suits, it’s doing so as a favor to me. I mean, who else will defend my constitutional right to be discriminated against on account of my race, my constitutional right to have my guns taken away from me, or my constitutional right to be prevented from voting on October 7?

    Thoreau: I’m not sure why you think an ACLU Democrat would be any better than the average Democrat on gun control. The ACLU itself is no champion of the Second Amendment; in fact, it actively campaigns against it.

  53. thoreau,

    I think a genuinely populist and libertarian Democrat would win in a landslide, if he stressed the anticorporate nature of his attacks on the state. An agenda focusing on eliminating corporate welfare, severely scaling back IP “rights,” withdrawing from the Uruguay Round, etc., would have heavy popular appeal in the Age of Enron.

    It would be nice to see a “progressive” go after corporate power by reducing the kinds of state intervention that prop it up, instead of trying to “counter” it (ha ha) with a centralized and paternalistic technocracy (a la Hillary).

    In the area of tax cuts, the Republicans always propose across the board tax cuts (despite the fact that the main increase in taxes over the last fifty years has been on the working class, from bracket creep). And the Demos always propose targeted tax cuts, as a social engineering tool, requiring recipients to jump through all the hoops.

    How about a tax agenda specifying that:

    1) all budget savings from cutting the drug war, m-i complex, corporate welfare, and the welfare state, would go directly into tax cuts; and
    2) all such tax cuts would take the form of increases in the personal exemption (with savings probably high enough to exempt all incomes under $30,000).

    Of course, I can imagine certain kinds of Republicans promoting such an overall agenda.

  54. “What is an “ACLU Democrat?” A preemptive sore loser who sues to stall an election until the Democratic primary?”

    Someone who thinks children have a right to privacy at public school . . . but no right not to go to school.

    Someone who thinks you have a right not to be charged twice for the same crime . . . unless you are a police officier who is charged with a politically incorrect crime.

    Someone who believes in free speach, unless it is political speach, then regulating it is OK.

    Someone who thinks that freedom of religion & no official state religion gives the state the right to prevent state employees from expressing religious views.

    And, someone who thinks that any requlation of private gun ownership is OK.

  55. When I praised ACLU Democrats, I meant that overall I have a lot of respect for Democrats who are in the ACLU. I will not say I agree with the ACLU on every single question, but overall I have a lot of respect for them. (To put it in perspective, is there ANY person out there who agrees with every single stand taken by the Libertarian Party?)

    I’d say an ACLU Democrat would be one who spends most of his legislative efforts on privacy, free speech, due process, and gov’t openness (e.g. wrangling with the Executive Branch to get them to turn over records of their actions, whether it’s Janet Reno or John Ashcroft making the mischief). This type of Democrat would probably devote very little of his legislative efforts toward making regulation and handing out subsidies. This type of Democrat would probably vote against McCain-Feingold (I believe the ACLU joined the suit against it, but correct me if I’m wrong) and have a better record on gun control than most Democrats (not perfect, but better than most).

    I’m not saying there are many such Democrats holding office, but how many Republican elected officials are like Ron Paul?

  56. “Of course, I can imagine certain kinds of Republicans promoting such an overall agenda.”

    Maybe if you had a time machine. The GOP is all about supply side and corporate welfare these days. Norquist even has the theocrats fighting for Bush’s tax packages. Focus on the Family has become Focus on the Tax Cut.

  57. EMAIL:

    DATE: 12/10/2003 11:04:35
    It is never a mistake to say good-bye.

  58. EMAIL:
    DATE: 12/21/2003 01:41:07
    A coward mistakes oppression for peace.

  59. EMAIL:
    DATE: 01/10/2004 02:25:32
    Have no friends not equal to yourself.

  60. EMAIL:
    DATE: 05/19/2004 08:08:17
    Reality is not affected by our apprehension of it.

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