California's $85 billion spending compromise is finally complete. Governor Schwarzenegger signed the bill today. In doing so, he chose to unilaterally eliminate some additional parts of the budget through his line-item veto power. Through the Associated Press report of these items, you might think that the Governor hates the weak -- as that's who most of his cuts affect. Let's test this theory.
Here's what the AP says:
Schwarzenegger used his line-item veto authority to save an additional $656 million that will let the state restore a reserve fund he says is needed for tough times.
Schwarzenegger's vetoes include $80 million from child welfare programs; $61 million in county funding to administer Medi-Cal, California's version of Medicare; $52 million from AIDS prevention; $50 million to Healthy Families, the low-cost health insurance program for poor children; and $6.2 million more from state parks.
So let me get this straight: he cut programs benefiting poor kids, poor elderly, preventing a fatal disease, and nature/wildlife. I'm sure his opponents are drooling over this news. In reading this, however, I noticed that it doesn't account for all that he vetoed. It adds up to just $249 million -- less than half of the $656 million in spending he vetoed. Could AP be cherry picking from the items vetoed to make the Governor look bad? To determine that, we need to know what else he cut.