Once again, Californians took their independent streak to the voting booth. Governor Schwarzenneger put everything on the line by calling a special election to push reform measures. The special election irritated many voters. The result? All the measures on the ballot were voted down.
There are many reasons why Californians voted the way they did. Our Governor has spent months telling us the state is broke and we can’t waste money. The special election cost the taxpayers $50 million. Could that money have been used to help schools, police, or others desparately needing money? California didn’t have $50 million to waste.
Many voters did not see the importance of the measures. None of them had the urgency that the last initiatives had. Many felt these reforms could have waited until our regular election in 2006.
Then there was the proposition that attacked teachers. This seemed to really bother people. They had problems seeing teachers as the villain destroying our state. No one could draw the connection between teacher tenure and California’s budget.
So, now that Californians have spoken, what’s next? The state needs change but in what form? It’s time for the Governor and the State Legislature to go back to the drawing board and give us something we can stand behind.