After raising hopes of new progressive policies during the election, our newly elected Governor now claims to be a fiscal moderate. Gavin Newsom now says, “All of this will be whittled down and we will live within our means.” What does he mean?

The “this” he refers to is more preschool opportunity for poor kids and more money for education in general. “This” also means more health care for those left out of the current inadequate US healthcare system. Those are just some of the things he wants to whittle down.

And just what does Newsom mean when he says “our means?” Our means are the financial limitations imposed on California by all the tax loopholes for the rich and all the corporate giveaways that promise jobs and a better economy, yet never live up to their promises.

What we really need is not to be whittled down, but to expand our means by eliminating all those loopholes and all the corporate welfare. And especially the real estate tax loophole that allows large corporations to receive Prop. 13 tax breaks forever while private homes lose their Prop. 13 status when they change hands, which corporations never do. Then “living within our means” can mean a better life for all Californians.

-- John Reiger
State Chair, Peace and Freedom Party