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Balancing the Budget Without New Taxes

June 12, 2003

I find it interesting that The Times, in "GOP Digs State In Deeper" (editorial, June 6), takes offense that I use my position to do what it and other newspapers across the state do on a regular basis: endorse or oppose candidates for public office based upon their positions and views -- in my case, tax increases. I have stated repeatedly that Senate Republicans are willing to negotiate on every aspect of the state budget with one exception, tax increases, which only serve to punish an economy trying to fight its way out of recession.

My Republican colleagues share my views. For the past three years, Gov. Gray Davis and the majority Democrats in the Legislature have prevailed on the budget. The result is a record deficit of more than $38 billion. I fail to grasp the logic that opposing the very policies that have driven the state to near-insolvency, somehow, in The Times' view, "endangers California."

Senate Republicans have proposed a budget that will close the state's deficit in two years without raising taxes on California's families. Our proposal has been dismissed by the governor and legislative Democrats. While The Times may believe that Republicans have taken a "Molotov-cocktail approach" to the budget, it is the tax-and-spend policies of Davis and legislative Democrats that have burned down the state's fiscal house.

Sen. James L. Brulte

Senate Republican Leader

Sacramento

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Re "Lawmakers See Slim Chance of Meeting Budget Deadline," June 11: Ah yes, the way of the GOP -- threats, intimidation, blackmail, "do as we say" attitude. Sounds like domestic terrorism to me.

Steven N. Copley

Harbor City

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It would seem that Brulte has, in the best Republican tradition, launched a preemptive strike to inspire shock and awe in a personal quest for weapons of mass delusion.

Larry Goldberg

Laguna Hills

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Since when has politics stopped being for the people and started being "follow party lines"? I wish politicians would show concern for their constituents and do less worrying about getting reelected.

No wonder the Republicans are not concerned about cutting programs. Education: no problem, as many of their children probably attend private schools. Police: no problem, as many of them probably have private security for their homes. Health care: no problem, as they can afford insurance.

Let's hope our state doesn't collapse due to the petty squabbling of people elected to protect our interests.

Debbie Cassettari

Chino Hills

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