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Being King of California Means Wearing A Crown of Thorns

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

California is more than broke--it's six feet under. With a $20 billion shortfall, and a 12 percent unemployment rate, it's not the sunny happy-go-lucky state of reinvention it once was. The Leonard Lopate Show asked Cathleen Decker, state politics editor and writer for the Los Angeles Times, and by Dan Walters, political columnist for the Sacramento Bee, to talk about the challenges facing the Golden State.

The governor's race in Cali is a fierce one this year as former Ebay boss Meg Whitman and political mainstay Jerry Brown duke it out. But considering the challenges facing whomever wins, why would anyone actually want to take the reigns of California's state government right now?

Dan Walters doesn't know.

"That's questionable. In fact, I wrote a column once saying anybody who runs for governor of California ought to be required to undergo a psychiatric examination. Because demonstrably, the state very likely is ungovernable at least in the conventional sense of the word."

Walters said the state's inherent complications with "uncountable numbers of ethnic and economic and geographic and cultural subgroups" and a governmental structure that requires unanimity in order to pass anything means it's no piece of cake.

Listen to the whole segment here.

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