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February 1, 2005.
Finally some good news?
Once-Invincible 'Governator' Dips in PollsBy BETH FOUHY, AP Political Writer
SAN FRANCISCO - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger The Republican governor who negotiated tough agreements with Democrats, charmed legislators with visits to his smoking tent and met rapturous crowds at shopping malls across California has hit a sophomore slump, marked by a series of actions that his adversaries are calling naive and even hypocritical.
His state budget proposal relies on $6 billion in borrowing, despite a campaign pledge to end such borrowing. He angered teachers by refusing to give about $2 billion in unanticipated revenues to schools. He is raking in contributions from business interests despite a pledge to end the influence of special-interest money in Sacramento. And his bipartisan image has been tarnished by a government restructuring plan that takes aim at Democratic constituencies like public employees and teachers.
rode an extraordinary wave of popularity in his first year, thanks to a blend of celebrity, political smarts, and a bit of rookie luck. But the so-called Governator now faces so much criticism that many wonder whether he might be a mere mortal after all.
"It's back to business as usual in Sacramento the fuss of last year is over," said Shaun Bowler, a political science professor at University of California-Riverside. "People have responded to the movie version of leadership that he's been practicing, but you can't suspend the laws of gravity forever just because you're a movie star."
The waning of Schwarzenegger's political honeymoon has restored confidence to the legislative Democrats Schwarzenegger labeled "girlie-men" and "losers." They're no longer as cowed by his star power. And groups like the California Teachers Association who agreed last year to temporarily give up $2 billion in constitutionally mandated education funding in exchange for future revenues, only to see Schwarzenegger refuse to give them the extra money they wanted this year have begun to question his credibility.
He wants to convert the state's public pension program to a 401(k)-style system, require merit pay for teachers, and redraw congressional and state legislative boundaries to make the seats more competitive. He also wants to establish a mechanism that would automatically slash state spending when it exceeded revenues.
It appears all but certain that Schwarzenegger will move forward with his trademark strategy: bypassing the Legislature and taking his plan to voters in a special election to be held this fall. It would be the fourth major statewide election in three years, costing the state at least $50 million.
The Austrailian News
Check out Exxon/Mobile's Profits, Thank god for George Bush, and the Iran, oops I mean Iraq War
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