Workers Comp Zone


It’s funny how circular life can be.

Schwarzenegger, whose efforts to recall Gray Davis jumpstarted his political career, may now be facing his own recall.

The California Correctional Peace Officers Association has issued a notice of intent to do just that. Whether this is posturing to get more concessions out of the budget or whether it’s for real remains to be seen.

The next step would be a filing with California’s Secretary Of State to be followed with a signature drive that would require over a million signatures.

With Schwarzenegger having low approval ratings and records being set every day for the longest time California has been without a budget, the idea could gain some political traction. And with little love being lost between some California Republicans and Schwarzenegger, it’s not clear whether he would get strong or only tepid support in fighting a recall.

But the Governor could probably count on a big ally: John McCain.

Presumably Schwarzenegger would be able to raise large amounts from the business community that has benefitted from workers’ comp reform and his “anti-job killer” stance on many bills. I suspect he would raise “whatever it takes” to avoid the fate of Gray Davis.

Signature gathering and recalls are expensive, even for a well-funded union like CCPOA. Most unions are focusing their efforts now on getting Obama elected, and it’s not clear whether there are other unions or liberal interest groups that might join in taking the lead in a recall.

And with Obama appearing-at least at this moment-to be falling behind as polls show McCain taking an increasing share of likely independent voters, Democrats could be under more pressure than expected this fall.

The budget standoff appears likely to drag on for at least another few weeks, but some sort of resolution may take further wind out of the sails of any recall talk.

Bottom line: the Governor probably is vulnerable, but it’s not clear this talk will go far at the moment.

If the recall is initiated, look for a fascinating scramble among the state’s pols.

Stay tuned.

Julius Young
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Category: Political developments