Away from all the national bleeding and great gnashing of teeth in the Democratic Party, the sun is shining bright for newly reelected Governor Jerry Brown as he picked up his second solvency award with a state credit upgrade from Standard & Poor’s. As the last Democrat standing tall, Jerry Brown seems positioned to sweep Hillary Clinton aside and become the front runner for the Democratic Presidential nomination.
After beating Meg Whitman in 2010 by 11.9%, Brown crushed Neel Kashkari in 2014 by 17.3% to capture for an unprecedented fourth term as governor. Forty-eight hours later, California’s credit rating was upgraded to “A+”–a tie with New Jersey for second-worst, but an improvement.
S&P municipal analyst David Hitchcock’s observed, “In our view, the new state constitutional provision will partially mitigate California’s volatile revenue structure by setting aside windfall revenue for use during periods when state tax revenue could fall materially short of forecast.”
Despite the Republicans’ national triumph in gaining control of the Senate and increased majority in the House, Brown and his party denied the GOP any California statewide office races. He not only succeeded in gaining voter approval for his Proposition 2 as a “rainy day savings fund” and budgetary requirement to pay down the state’s not-so-golden debt, Brown led the effort to pass Proposition 1, a $7.5-billion water bond.
Jerry Brown may be 76 years old, but he knows how to win. He first beat out 123 candidates in 1969 for a position on the newly created Los Angeles Community College Board of Trustees. The next year, he was elected California Secretary of State. Brown served a single term before moving up to governor of the state in 1975. Many people called Brown a polarizing figure for two terms, because of his progressive speeches, but he set a record by approving 98% of the bills passed by the California legislature.
With the credit upgrade, Brown now has the ability to borrow more money to fund his agenda on climate change, a high-speed rail system and tunnels from the Delta to the California Aqueduct. His star power also ensures that Democratic-controlled legislature will not try to pass the type of increases in social services that are unpopular nationally.
Hillary Clinton’s 2014 campaign appearances were about as exciting as her dreary 52-day book tour. But while she yacked, the Governor was being seen as a leader. With moon beams smiling down on Jerry Brown, he looks ready to lead the Democrats in 2016.
“Chriss Street suggests that if you are interested in California business and politics, please click on: Box-Office Bomb: Hollywood Left’s Money Crushed by GOP Wave“