How can we take the Republican Party seriously when they do not want to do anything substantial to solve the state budget crisis? Yes, the regulations requiring for a 2/3rds passage of tax increases and budgets only makes the job difficult and leads to prolonged stalemates. Californians rely on various public services from public education, fire fighting and disaster assistance to name a few services that would be imperiled if we have massive cuts that will happen if new revenue cannot be found.
We have had a spending problem because our Republican Governor and the Democrats became too cocky when our economy was driven by the housing bubble, not knowing that the good times will sustain. Now the bubble has burst and revenues are down where we have a 12 billion dollar deficit to deal with before the next budget has passed.
Republicans have been rabidly against any tax in any shape or form. However tax increases should be utilized to help close the deficit and fund needed public services. We should utilize spending caps and have a reserve fund for the next economic crisis so we would be secure in these difficult times. Maybe we should dare the Democratic Party in California to implement a budget without any Repubican restraint and see if it cripples the state economy, making the budget a 50%+1 affair would allow us to have the Democratic Party have ownership of their economic policies. If the budget is passed by 50%+1, and the state economy still goes down in the toilet then the Republicans would have a mandate for change.
The same playbook from 2008 should not be used in 2010, Californians understand the implications of Republican fiscal policy and did not reward them with any substantial gain or loss in Sacramento. Fiscal restraint while helping to maintain public services will be the winning strategy for the future.