California Gov. Jerry Brown has not (yet) entered the race for President of the United States in 2016, but he laid out a three-point presidential agenda in an appearance on NBC News’ Meet the Press on Sunday morning.
Brown, who told host Chuck Todd that he would run if he were ten years younger (he is 76), said that the presidential candidates for 2016 must balance the federal budget; confront climate change, and fund science and education as part of a “positive” agenda.
I think they have to–you’ve got to get a budget that lives within its means, and you can’t spend 21 or 22% of the Gross Domestic product and only collect 18%. So you have to find some ways of getting some revenue, particularly on our roads and highways and transportation, trains and bridges. Pretty fundamental. Secondly, I think climate change is very important. And thirdly, we have to invest in science, in technology, in our universities–and that’s building for the future and not stealing from it. So I’d like to see a positive agenda, and not the mythology that somehow government can retract to where it was in 1929 under Calvin Coolidge…under [Herbert] Hoover.
Todd then asked Brown, point-blank: “If you were ten years younger, would you be running this year?” Brown replied, without hesitation: “Yes, I would.”
The NBC News panel raved over his performance in the interview. Former Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA) suggested that Brown might not, after all, be too old to run–and that he was better now than in his first term as governor, some four decades ago.
“This is Jerry Brown reaching the gold standard,” she told the panel.