Grover Norquist’s Attempt to Hijack California Budget Talks

Posted on 10 March 2011

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By John Burton
California Democratic Party

Grover Norquist’s description of the California Democratic Party as “pathetic” is an indication that he is unaware of the butt-kicking we gave his Republican Party up and down the state of California last November.

California Democrats defeated billionaire Meg Whitman for Governor, multi-millionaire Carly Fiorina for US Senate, the popular Los Angeles County District Attorney for Attorney General, and the rest of the Republican ticket.  We even picked up one seat in the state legislature. Any political party in the country would like to be that “pathetic.”

Norquist is using bullyboy tactics against Republican office holders, who are in theory supposed to represent their constituents and not Norquist’s ultra-right, money-making organization.  This is exactly what we would expect from the former chief speechwriter for the reactionary United States Chamber of Commerce.

He was so successful with Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America” that Republicans lost the House and Gingrich left under a cloud.

He was so successful in helping Arnold Schwarzenegger privatize the CalPERS system that the fund went into the toilet.  Even though Grover wants to drown government in the bathtub, which may help him raise funds for himself and his organization, I do not believe that it is the point of view of even conservative Republicans here in California.

Good-government Grover of course worked with the totally discredited convicted criminal Jack Abramoff, and public records allege that his group served as a conduit for funds contributed from Abramoff’s clients to finance “grassroots lobbying campaigns.”

It is not surprising that somebody who supported the illegal effort of Oliver North, which tried to overthrow various governments around the world, would want Republicans to deny their constituents the right to self-determination on any number of issues including increasing revenue to support schools, health, public safety and other measures.

Grover was once quoted as saying when he became 21, he decided nobody learned anything about politics after the age of 21. Clearly the man’s growth has been stunted.  His effort to stunt the growth of California makes this plain for all to see.


John Burton is the Chair of the California Democratic Party. He has served as a State Assemblymember, US Congressmember and as President pro Tem of the California State Senate.

Who was that former SF mayor famous for showering with a friend? Maybe as he was also a cop he could figure out how to drown Norquist in a shower?

Jerry Brown needs to get outside the typical mindset of his union cohorts and take measures to reduce spending to match revenue. State government has grown by leaps and bounds the last few years. Reduce the number of employees, trim unnecessary boondoggle panels and committees, and operate like a business would. Revenue drops, so the number of employees drop, discretionary items go away, and hard decisions need to be made.

Instead we hear the same tired mantra of education and safety cuts and the woe-are-we teachers union of how many teachers will be cut. How about reducing wasteful administration, combine programs, think outside the box.

To quote Jerry Brown, "Get Real!"

Not only Republicans are against the tax extensions; many Democrats are too. The Governor has not justified why he needs another $12 billion or so. He claims that more cuts would have to be made, but that presumes that every additonal dollar is needed in the various programs. That's false: education, prisons, Medi-Cal, human services--are all bloated with high salaries.