With all sails up and heading downwind, Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown is on course to win an unprecedented fourth term as governor in California, 40 years after he won his first.
The Orange County Register has Brown leading opponent Neel Kashkari by a sixteen point margin of likely voters, 52-36 percent.
Notably, Brown is enjoying a 58 percent job approval rating at a time where anti-incumbent feelings are high among voters who are tired of gridlock in Washington and where Democrats are predicted to lose control of the Senate and lose more ground in the House.
In a turnaround that would prompt Lazarus to take notice, the current Golden State’s chief executive left the governor’s office in 1983 with hefty disapproval ratings, according to Politico, approaching the same margin that now approves of him, and an indelible reputation as being a “far-out” politician known as “Governor Moonbeam.”
Politico, just six days before the Nov. 4 election, is touting Brown’s record as laudatory and calls him the most effective public sector leader in America today. Applauding Brown for turning around a budget deficit in California into a $4 billion surplus, Politico fails to note that California faces over $300 billion in unfunded liabilities created by years of overspending and a runaway state employee pension system that has guaranteed retired employees annual income far beyond the state can afford.
Brown’s success, according to Politico, is being a Democrat in a state that’s increasingly deep blue, and has majorities in both the state Senate and the Assembly. Moreover, Bruce Cain, a professor at Stanford University and an expert on California explained that Brown came to power on the heels of an inexperienced Arnold Schwarzenegger whose stewardship left much to be desired. “I do think voters realized they were kind of paying for Arnold’s education, that he had to learn the hard way and was pretty naive. That set the table for the appeal of experience again,” Cain said.
Politico continues to press forward with the meme that Brown is monastic like the Jesuit seminarian he once was and that he drove to work during his first term in a “plebeian” Plymouth. The article contends that Brown has always been a bit of a fiscal conservative with libertarian proclivities like being in favor of legalizing marijuana.
Beneath the mask of the ascetic Jesuit, however, Breitbart News reported last week that Brown in fact is getting very rich off of real estate and stock holdings by partnering with prestigious Oakland developers whom he at one time regulated when he was Mayor of Oakland.
NBC News White House Correspondent Chuck Todd told Joe Scarborough on the Morning Joe back in July that Jerry Brown would be the “most likely” challenger to Hillary Clinton in 2016 for the Democratic Party nomination for president. It looks like Politico may agree with Todd, although they note that his run would be optimal if he was 20 years younger.
According to Cain, Brown’s personality would lend itself well to a presidential run because, as Politico posits, he is a “sui generis” politician in so many ways.
“It does take somebody with enough idiosyncrasy and strength in their personality to resist doing all the conventional things,” Cain said. “And I think a lot of politicians don’t think for themselves. They simply do what the consultants tell them, which is usually based on unsupported conventional wisdom. I think independent thinking is something that pleases voters, but it’s not easy to do.”