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Wednesday, November 9, 2005
CA Says “No” (Eight Times)
By Dr. Steven Taylor @ 6:21 am

Via the LAT: Voters Reject Schwarzenegger’s Bid to Remake State Government

The Republican governor had cast the four initiatives as central to his larger vision for restoring fiscal discipline to California and reforming its notoriously dysfunctional politics.

The failure of Proposition 76, his spending restraints, and Proposition 77, his election district overhaul, represented a particularly sharp snub of the governor by California voters. It also threw into question his strategy of threatening lawmakers with statewide votes to get around them when they block his favored proposals.

Also, Schwarzenegger’s defeat on Proposition 75 was a major victory for his rivals in organized labor. It would have required unions for public workers to get written consent from members before spending their dues money on politics.

And, no wonder he lost:

Dogging the governor, as it has for months, was the California Nurses Assn., which organized a luau at the Trader Vic’s in the same hotel. As Schwarzenegger’s defeats mounted, giddy nurses formed a conga line and danced around the room, singing, “We’re the mighty, mighty nurses.”

The power of the conga line!

And the other four initiative failed as well:

Also on the ballot were four other initiatives. Voters were narrowly defeating Proposition 73, which would bar abortions for minors without parental notification. The state Republican Party promoted Schwarzenegger’s endorsement of the measure among evangelicals and other religious conservatives in a bid to boost turnout of voters who would back the rest of his agenda.

By a wide margin, voters also rejected rival measures on prescription-drug discounts. The pharmaceutical industry spent $80 million on a campaign to defeat Proposition 79, a labor and consumer-group proposal, and pass its own alternative, Proposition 78.

Voters also turned down Proposition 80, a complex measure to revamp rules governing the electricity industry. The initiative, sponsored by consumer advocates, tried to draw on public anger from the state’s 2000 energy crisis, but polls suggested that it confused voters.

Of the elections last night that have a clear meaning for forthcoming contests, this is perhaps the one that sends the clearest message. There is little doubt that Schwarzenegger is damaged and is in real trouble next year in terms of his re-election bid.

Yesterday was about Arnold, as another LAT story notes: Governor Was on Their Mind, No Matter How They Voted:

The election also was widely viewed as a referendum on the governor, who campaigned vigorously for a yes vote on four propositions, portraying them as essential reforms.

Given that they voted “no” on everything isn’t a good sign for the Governor.

Here are the results via the SecState’s office:

Propositions Yes Votes Pct. No Votes Pct.

73 N Minor’s Pregnancy 3,122,261 47.4 3,453,893 52.6

74 N Teacher Tenure 2,979,933 44.9 3,650,243 55.1

75 N Public Union Dues 3,085,601 46.5 3,538,152 53.5

76 N Spending/Funding 2,516,553 38.0 4,101,434 62.0

77 N Redistricting 2,667,371 40.5 3,906,991 59.5

78 N Rx Drug Discounts 2,711,777 41.5 3,810,710 58.5

79 N Rx Drug Rebates 2,516,134 38.9 3,939,405 61.1

80 N Electric Regulation 2,182,333 34.3 4,170,416 65.7

Those are all rather emphatic answers.

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