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Antonio Villaraigosa wins California Gubernatorial Denates


Although his name is not on any ballots this June, the big winner this week in the California Gubernatorial race was Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
If Los Angeles’ first Latino Mayor in generations reminds you of California’s current Governor, you can be forgiven. Like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Villaraigosa is long on charisma and short on substance.
Both came into office pursuing sweeping changes—and while the jury is still out on Villaraigosa’s bid to “blow up the boxes” of Los Angeles’ dysfunctional school district, like Arnold, he’ll have to do it over the objections of the State’s powerful teachers’ unions.
Unlike Schwarzenegger, however, Villaraigosa is no political neophyte. He’s been on the Los Angeles City Council and served as Speaker of the California Assembly. He was groomed as a worker for the UTLA—Los Angeles’ teachers’ union which he is now taking on publicly. His whole life seems to have been about grooming himself for November 2010.
Villaraigosa is by far the most popular Democrat in California, and that’s unfortunate for Phil Agelides and Steve Westly—the two guys who are gunning for Schwarzenegger this November.
While Westly and Angelides have been debating bull shit (literally), they’ve made the case to give Arnold four more years in the Governor’s office by tearing each other apart. The more Californians know about these guys, the less they like them.
Meanwhile, Governor Schwarzenegger is starting to get along with his colleagues in the State Captiol. Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata and Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez seem to have forgotten the partisan rancor they helped fuel in 2005 and are working with the Governor to actually, you know, accomplish things.
The Democrats in Sacramento are actually remembering that Arnold is more like them than he is like many Republicans in the State Legislature and are coming to terms with the possibility that if four more years of Arnold is the “stick” they’ll gladly wait for a “carrot” named Antonio Villaraigosa.

Share  Posted by Scott Olin Schmidt at 8:25 AM | Permalink

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