Even in Democratic strongholds like New York and California, candidates are having to realize that the voters are fed up with government waste, big spending, and higher taxes.
Michael Barone has an interesting take in today’s RealClearPolitics.com about how voters in even the biggest states (which are typically heavily Democratic) are rejecting big government candidates in favor of more… Â reasonable ideas:
“Government in New York is too big, ineffective and expensive,” the candidate’s website proclaims. “We must get our state’s fiscal house in order by immediately imposing a cap on state spending and freezing salaries of state public employees as part of a one-year emergency financial plan, committing to no increase in personal or corporate income taxes of sales taxes and imposing a local property tax cap.”
Some right-wing Republican? No, it’s Andrew Cuomo, son of three-term Democratic Gov. Mario Cuomo. Interestingly, he’s the only Democrat with a significant polling lead in the governor races in our eight largest states, which together have 48 percent of the nation’s population.
It’s a poorly kept secret that government is growing not only at the federal but also at the state and local levels. Especially in some of the biggest states, public employee unions have successfully pressed for higher pay and lavish pensions (one Illinois school superintendent’s pension is valued at $26 million) to the point that public employees’ salaries and benefits are higher than those of the private-sector taxpayers who pay for them.
So while 8 million private-sector jobs have disappeared, the number of public-sector job losses is near zero.
Barack Obama’s solution is to send borrowed federal dollars — one-third of the $862 billion stimulus package last year and now a proposal for another $23 billion for teachers — to states and localities to prop up the pay of unionized public employees. One reason: Unions gave Obama and the Democrats $400 million in the 2008 cycle.