The Corner

‘Schwarzenegger Puts Legacy on the Line With Budget Vote’

That’s the title of an article in the Wall Street Journal this morning. It is a reference to California’s special election today. Voters will go to the polls today to vote on six ballot propositions that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has pushed heavily for, four of which would raise taxes on Californians. The tax increases are supposed to close the state’s $15 billion budget shortfall. If voters reject the tax hikes, the governor has warned that he would have to free prisoners and close fire stations (rather than sell California’s public golf courses, cut non-essential programs, or finally stand up to the unions).

Besides, if this special election were so important for his legacy, why would he decide to be in Washington, D.C. for a photo-op with President Obama rather than in California? Are you missing the red carpet, Arnold?  

Or maybe it’s just that he knows that his legacy has already been established. In the end, the Terminator’s tenure as a governor of the Golden State will be remembered as a disaster flick which ends with high taxes, failed promises, and gigantic spending. For instance, not only did he bail on his promise to destroy the car tax, cut spending, and bring unprecedented prosperity to California, but he also caved to the unions and now wants voters to pay for the mess he caused.

The sad part of this bad movie is that this is a guy who came into office with a very promising future and a potential to be transformative in important ways. He was pro-business, pro-small government, and open-minded. He even quoted Adam Smith.

Yet he failed in every dimension of the job. Watch this excellent Reason TV video for more on Arnold’s legacy.


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