Larry Kudlow and Melissa Francis have been encouraging me to run for Governor of California. They're joking. Sort of. After all, could I be any worse? Hey, there's a campaign motto!
"Vote for Jane! She can't be any worse!"
Sure, there are serious issues facing California. As I head this evening to Sacramento to cover the Governor's final State of the State address tomorrow, it's obvious to all that to say this state is in a catatonic state is an understatement.
One year ago, California faced a gaping $42 billion projected budget gap over 18 months. It was only partially solved with cuts, furloughs (now being successfully challenged in court), tax and fee hikes, one-time federal stimulus money, and accounting maneuvers that collected some income taxes early to frontload the budget, while others moved money from the next fiscal year into this one.
The result? California now faces a $21 billion projected gap. Glass half full--we cut the deficit in half!
Governor Schwarzenegger this week is expected to propose some solutions. He may express support for broadening and flattening California's tax structure, which currently depends on the Wall Street fortunes of too few rich people to pay the state's bills. He will bang the drum for more money from Washington, since California only receives 78 cents in federal aid for every dollar it sends to DC. Expect to hear about more cuts, more borrowing, and he may even support repealing tax breaks for businesses passed last year.
It's seems a sure bet that you will see more infighting with an intransigent legislature which may have no desire to deal with a lame duck Governor.
He has had a very difficult job. And yet a few people are insane enough to want to take it over--Meg Whitman, Steve Poizner, Tom Campbell, and probably, eventually, Jerry Brown.
And Jane Wells.
Why don't we exhibit a little insanity of our own? In my FAKE run for Governor, I will not propose serious ideas. I am not going to champion massive plans to streamline state government (though we should outsource the DMV to the Auto Club) or suggest revolutionary new revenue generators (like trying to tax the marijuana industry without violating federal law).
This campaign is about bringing even more Funny Business to state government.
Vote for Jane: because we can still do damage to California!
Vote for Jane: she'll deliver Sacramento the ultimate Wells Notice!
I'm soliciting suggested campaign slogans. The best ones I will put up for a vote. Prize? Maybe I'll have a campaign t-shirt made. This is all a work in progress.
I'm also seeking ideas for a platform. One thing I'll certainly champion is the death penalty for people who drive slowly in the fast lane on the 101. Also, to generate revenue AND reduce visual pollution, I'm going to propose a tax on "muffin tops", which will both raise money and encourage people to cover up their overhanging midriffs.
Toward this end, I've already asked for suggested policy initiatives on my Twitter page, and I've also asked friends and family on Facebook.
Here's a smattering of their ideas:
--"Felony charge for driving with cellphone in front of your face held like a walkie talkie, like no one can see that you are still NOT hands-free."
--"Make it illegal for people over the age of 10 to wear Crocs. Burn 'Mom jeans'."
--"Pledge to continue ignoring voters, redistricting, and budget deadlines. In fact, ignore them even more."
--"Mandatory prison terms for white people with dreadlocks." (That one is from my sister, a musician, who is working on a campaign theme song.)
--"Remove the index finger of anyone caught spraying graffiti. The whole hand on the second offense!"
--"Pot for every chicken."
--"Hire Alan (Zack Galifianakis) from 'The Hangover' as pitchman--'Wells for Gov. Cuz our economy sucks. Thanks a lot, Bin Laden.'"
--"Make it illegal for people wearing flip flops to drag their feet. At least make it legal to shoot them."
--"Better idea--run for Athletic Director of USC. They need help sooner than California."
--"No rhinestone skulls of dragons on anything. Seriously, why has this trend come back? Only a fake executive order can kill it dead."
--"An anti-Tiger Woods bill. Anyone even mentions his name will be fined." (Well, I'd have to fine myself, then.)
--"Ban gasoline and bottled water and get it over with."
Please contribute more suggestions for the campaign to take back the State of California! The fake takeback of a fake state! Change you can disbelieve in!
Questions? Comments? Funny Stories? Email