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Why can’t we vote for lower cost of government as well as a tax increase?

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Posted: Saturday, March 17, 2012 12:00 am

It's just a wish, but wouldn't it be great if voters could vote to cut the cost of state government as well as increase taxes?

Sacramento was all aflutter this past week when Gov. Jerry Brown and several union leaders worked out a compromise tax increase proposal that they hope to put on the ballot in November.

There may be two of these on the ballot, but presumably the compromise will assure this is the front-runner.

If proponents get enough signatures this spring and enough votes in November, the income tax on the state's richest people will be increased along with the sales tax. California will then step $9 billion closer to a balanced budget.

Meanwhile, the unions have enough influence with Democrats in the legislature to block the governor's proposal to cut pension costs. Legislative Republicans have introduced the Democratic governor's bill, but as long as nearly all Democrats oppose it, it will go nowhere.

And get this: There was a pension reform proposal ready for signature gathering, but author Daniel Pellissier withdrew it. Secretary of State Kamala Harris, a Democrat, condemned it to failure with a biased, unpalatable title and summary.

What we wonder is why the Republicans aren't pushing Brown's reform proposal for the ballot. Would Harris give her fellow Democrat's idea the same bad brand she gave Republican Pellissier's proposal?

We're just asking.

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