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Past Votes Show That California Isn't Liberal

November 06, 2002

Re "A State of Change: California's Tilt Toward the Left," Opinion, Nov. 3:

I seriously question Harold Meyerson's idea that California is a left-leaning state. After all, California voters have affirmed the death penalty, voted to make English the official language, voted to eliminate publicly funded benefits for illegal immigrants, moved against affirmative action and prohibited gay marriage. Oh, yeah, don't forget voters also threw out of office Chief Justice Rose Bird and two other liberal justices. These can hardly be considered a series of flukes but instead represent a long-term trend of conservative values among Californians.

But Meyerson did get one aspect correct: The two most conservative presidents of the 20th century (Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan) did come out of his "liberal" California. Gov. Gray Davis, for all the millions he spent, couldn't get more than 10 points ahead of Bill Simon in preelection opinion polls. If the Republicans had fielded a stronger candidate in this election, chances are Davis would have been 10 points behind him, and the entire Republican ticket would have fared much better.

Larry Shulman

Northridge

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One question, please, to Meyerson, whose silly column displays how much he hates the Bible Belt (where men tote guns) and loves what the liberals are doing in California. What happens, sir, when these liberals drive all the major businesses out of the state with their regulations?

Paul Knopick

Laguna Hills

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