Educate Yourself before you vote

#fb It’s political season and everyone is promising everything – if you would just vote for them …

Get to know what the limits and powers of the offices really are so you can watch the commercials and read the pundit’s promises and know when they are blowing smoke at you.

WHAT IS A GOVERNOR –

  • The Governor is the President of your state and therefor the most visible person in their Political Party in your state.
  • A Governor may veto bills that are passed by the legislature, but also they may try to sway a vote or pressure legislators into passing or writing bills. In some states the Governor can have a “line item veto”. (The US President does not). That means he or she does not need to veto an entire bill if there is a part of it they don’t agree with, they can simply approve the bill while removing specific items. Last year Governor Schwarzenegger removed $489 million from the state budget with his line item veto.
  • The Governor signs bills into law
  • is the Commander in Chief of the state’s National Guard.
  • Appoints Judges and other Political Appointees
  • And if you have ever watched a movie about a prisoner on death row – you know the state governor can stop an execution and pardon a prisoner.

When you elect a Governor, or talk about the work of a Governor, you are not simply referring to the work of one person. A good governor has a  knowlegable staff of interns, attorneys, analysts, finance experts and more to help break down the complex problems of the state and create useful plans to create change or preserve working systems.  Although it isn’t a popularity contest, a governor who has bad council will not be as effective as one who surrounds themself and  listens to experts in their fields

 

STATE BUDGET PROMISES:

Want to see if YOU can balance the budget – go here: http://www.nextten.org/budgettool/site/thesim/flashcheck.html 

Candidate Jerry Brown states the California Budget problems are  due to a “morass of poisonous partisanship”. If that were in plain language he is saying that the legislators we elected are voting only for what their team (or political party) wants.  I think it is more complex than that. We can not take the state budget and wipe it clean and start new because some programs are funded with “sundown” laws where the money is guaranteed to be spent for a specific period of time. Other state funds must be spent on specific programs in order for the state to collect Federal funds.

Meg Whitman, another hopeful on the ballot,  says she will “SUGGEST” that for everyday the budget is overdue, that the legislature go without pay and per diem funds. Well, she can SUGGEST al she wants because those funds (about $100 per day of living expenses when an Assemblyman or legislator  is in residence for work in Sacramento) are not under the control of the governor. The amount of money paid to the legislators (politicians) is set by the California Citizens Compensation Commission. Only THEY can “un-pay” or freeze the pay for our politicians unless we manage to pass a law that they can not be paid for work not completed in a timely manner.

“Each legislator also receives $5,400 or 90 percent, whichever is less, towards a state-leased automobile, allowances for postage, expenses in district offices, and mileage on personal cars. The state pays commercial transportation costs and expenses for cars owned or leased by the state.”-smartvoter.org

The GOVERNOR has to answer to the State Legislature and Vice Versa, it is called checks and balances. The Governor can want to appoint someone to a position, but the legislature can say NO!  The Legislature  has influence over the funding, organization, and procedures used by administrative agencies run from the office of the Governor.

Impeaching – the process of accessing and then punishing officials who have abused or misused their power, has nothing to do with the Governor at all, unless they are being impeached.  Here, I drew you a picture.

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