California Republicans Can't Even Do Wrong Right


Don't hog all the credit, Mark. This blight is bipartisan!

At CalWatchdog, Steven Greenhut catches Republicans "on the side of big government, higher taxes and uncontrolled debt and against property rights, individualism and freedom." His proof? The Assembly GOP's vote last week on Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to phase out redevelopment agencies.

Brown wants to eliminate the state's 400 redevelopment agencies (RDAs). The Republicans – who continue to find new ways to lose in California – have only 27 out of 80 Assembly seats. That gives them no leverage on budget votes, which now require a straight majority rather than two-thirds. But it's still enough to make a difference in emergency budget bills like this one, which do require a two-thirds majority. So during a week in which the Republicans allowed all manner of big-spending budget provisions to go by, how did they do on the one vote that could have helped California property owners and small business people? Greenhut counts the votes:

[O]nly longtime redevelopment foe, Chris Norby of Fullerton, sided with taxpayers and property owners. The rest of the Assembly Republicans voted "no" or didn't vote at all. Had even one of the Republicans joined Norby, the bill would have passed with a two-thirds majority. There may still be time, but the GOP is too busy celebrating that it stopped Brown on this one issue. They put partisanship above their own ideology. They stopped Brown in one of the few areas where Brown was right…

Redevelopment is about everything Republicans claim to loath: bureaucracy, debt, abuses of property rights, big government, excessive land-use rules, subsidized housing and fiscal irresponsibility. In California cities, redevelopment bureaucrats rule the roost and they leave a path of destruction wherever they go. They bully people and impose enormous burdens on taxpayers. The diversion of tax dollars to welfare queens mandates higher taxes, but the GOP sided with the redevelopment industry. They sided with agencies that run up hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer-backed indebtedness. They sided with government-directed stimulus programs, albeit local ones rather than federal ones.

The truth is California Republicans do not believe in limited government. They do not stand up for property owners. They are the party of corporate welfare.

It's hard to overstate how grotesque this vote was. Jerry Brown has gone against many longtime supporters on this issue. He has surprisingly brought together support from a coalition of state Democrats, including Controller John Chiang, who is taking a hard look at the day-to-day criminality of the RDAs.

Golden State Republicans, now under the new management of Chairman Tom Del Beccaro, are promising to pay more attention to "the next generation," "minority voters,"  "independents" and "even…Democrats." And here are the Democrats, not even trying to pass off some compassionate-conservative horse pucky or offering a quid-pro-quo for a tax increase, but putting out a proposal that will help all of the above and provide real red meat for fiscal conservatives. And the Republicans can't vote for it.

Here, here, here, here, here and here are more reasons why this vote should have been a slam dunk for the Republicans.

Thomas Sowell looks at the ethnic cleansing of the San Francisco pensinsula and concludes, "Redevelopment exports low-income people and imports high-income people—with no net addition or subtraction of either segment of the population in the country as a whole."

John Stossel notes that the Community Youth Athletic Center case in San Diego will be the first tried under a supposed 2008 reform of California's eminent domain. I was around when the decoy Proposition 99 easily displaced the actual eminent domain reform Proposition 98. There has been no reform of California's eminent domain laws, and if this is where CYAC is putting its hopes, my heart goes out to the young boxers of National City.

And here's Greenhut talking to Reason TV about the rise of the government employee aristocracy:

NEXT: Set Tivos to Stun: Michael Moynihan on Red Eye With Greg Gutfeld Tonight!

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  1. The truth is California Republicans do not believe in limited government. They do not stand up for property owners. They are the party of corporate welfare.

    And this is different from Republicans in other states how?

    1. “And this is different from Republicans in other states how?”

      They live farther west than most.

      1. ^^^ THIS ^^^

    2. “And this is different from Republicans in other states how?”

      I’m not sure the Tea Party people should be lumped in with the rest of them–yet.

      They may turn on us like rabid dogs, but until they do so?

      I don’t think we should lump them in with John Boehner and merry band of TARP loving, Medicare prescription benefit touting traitors to the small government cause.

      1. I don’t think we should lump them in with John Boehner and merry band of TARP loving, Medicare prescription benefit touting traitors to the small government cause.

        So you’re saying we shouldn’t lump the tea party people with the tea party people? Or that we shouldn’t lump in the tea party’s small government rhetoric with the actual tea party?

        1. John Boehner supported TARP. John Boehner supported just about everything the Tea Party was against.

          The reason the Tea Party didn’t start up within the Republican Party? Is because of the Republican leadership–like John Boehner.

          The Tea Party sprang into existence to oppose people like John Boehner, and the Tea Party has been a thorn in John Boehner’s side since before the last congressional election…

          The most devastating consequences of the Tea Party have been on Republicans they defeated in the primaries…

          There’s no reason to lump the Tea Party in with John Boehner. The biggest threat to John Boehner’s leadership isn’t the Democrats–it’s the Tea Party.

          So why lump the Tea Party in with John Boehner. If he’s the enemy of the Tea Party, so why lump them in together?



  2. I would like to hear the Republican’s side of the story before rushing to any conclusions.

    1. We’re against the Democrats, but we have to go along to get along, ya see?

  3. Republicans should completely drop out of California for an election cycle or two.
    They would win huge afterwards; of course, the mess to clean up would stink to high heaven.

    1. The CA Republicans could go the Hamas route – not participate for a couple election cycles but run a bunch of soup kitchens, take over garbage collections, launch the occasional ineffectual missile barrage at Mexico or Arizona (AZ preferred) then come back and run for office, all sporting beards, pick up the endorsement of Andrew Sullivan and sweep into power. Once into power they could torture Willie Brown and be so isolated from the federal government as to cause California to succeed from the Union.

      It could happen.

      1. I might move back to the U.S. if this happened.

      2. You need to write an alternate universe story just for this, dude.

        1. The strangest thing is the California Republicans already live in their own alternate universe – one where creatures with no spines wield awesome power.

      3. …cause California to succeed from the Union.

        You mean “secede.” There isn’t anything that could make California succeed at this point.

  4. Well, the Rs are only doing this to keep the tax extensions in Brown’s budget from coming to a vote. But more importantly, you write this like it’s a surprising revelation from the current budget mess. This is nothing new; CA Republicans have always been rent-seekers, and have never pretended to care about fiscal responsibility.

  5. Even the Libertarians support Brown on this one issue. Why the GOP sacrificed principle for partisanship is beyond anyone’s guess. Time to let Senator Dutton, the Senate GOP leader, that they blew it big-time.

    1. Astro turf?

      1. The only people I know who talk like that are political hacks.

      2. If that’s astroturf it’s misplaced, because he’s agreeing with the article and (I would bet) pretty much everyone else here.

  6. No snark, just a question and I couldn’t find the answer in the links:
    Was the issue part of a ‘package deal’?

    1. Why you ask that like that might be something unusual in Sacramento.

      1. Not sure about your response, but was it ‘vote for this and also you vote for that’?

        1. That’s what I was wondering…

          1. I’ll bring in the snark – that’s why this story is crap. There’s not even the pretense of bringing in another ‘side’. We shouldn’t have to guess what the counter logic is.

            The only good thing about being a Republican in California is the mail. Rather, the lack of it at election time. California Democrats get flooded with mail. Republicans don’t get squat. My recycle bin appreciated the change from 2008 in the most recent election.

  7. Fullerton, Brea, Placentia, and Yorba Linda are home to much redevelopment abuse. It was Yorba Linda that tried to declare its undeveloped hills to be “blighted”. Fullerton managed to declare part of a CSU to be blighted, which has some truth to it.

    1. To clarify, Jewel Plumber Cobb and Fullerton declared the parking lot in the southeast corner of CSUF to be blighted. This was a regular parking lot full of cars and orange trees. The true center of blight at that place was a couple hundred feet to the west, where Cobb worked. A Marriott was built there. Obviously, hotels would never be built in California if it were not for redevelopment. The university gets one dollar a year for giving up that parking lot. Fullerton CRA collects a quarter mill a year for leasing money that was gifted to it by Jewel Plumber Cobb. Cobb’s take is unknown.

      1. sed s:leasing money:leasing land

      2. The baseball team was probably scared for minute there.

  8. I hope that seldom GOP yeah voter leaves the CA GOP. Fuck them all.

  9. Unless there was something truly odious attached to the bill unrelated to getting rid of these redevelopment agencies, this has to be a total Whiskey Tango Foxtrot moment.

  10. OT: is Letterman scared of Nuclear?

  11. But if this is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

  12. As a person who is registered as a California Republican I am sorely disappointed. Apparently Republicans here just have this “fuck it” attitude since they’re so impotent in statewide matters. I plan on writing my assemblyman Jim Silva to express my disappointment with him on this issue.

    1. You rebel scum.

  13. Redevelopment is about everything Republicans claim to loath

    In whose (whom’s?) (which f***ing person’s) lifetime did Republicans make such claims?

    Only “radical” tea partiers make such claims today. And nobody is sure yet if they mean anything by it.

  14. THREADJACK: I just saw a TwittFace from Moynihan (I believe) that Balko is leaving REASON. Is this true? If so, will someone else be assigned to deliver regular groinal trauma to H&Ristas;?

    Also 🙁 if true.

    1. If true, my vote is for Mike Tyson as a replacement


        It’s true–I’m leaving Reason in May to work at Huffington Post. I Love Reason, but this is a great opportunity. More details to come.

        I guess it is a sad day…but having Radley get a bigger platform is not a bad thing.

        Plus i am sure reason hit and run will crosslink to his stories incestuously so he is only sort of leaving….ie reason will still print him they will simply stop paying him for it =)

    2. I just saw a TwittFace from Moynihan (I believe) that Balko is leaving REASON.

      You sir are full of shit.

      With rumors like this provide a link or don’t even mention it.

  15. Tony? MNG? (chirp, chirp)

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