Another California democrat suggests cutting off state funds in Republican districts as punishment for 'not liking government.'
4/29/11, "Burton takes some heat for 'shooting' remark," Contra Costa Times, Steven Harmon
"Dem party chairman joked that Gov. Brown should shoot a Republican to get a vote on taxes"
"John Burton, the state Democratic Party chairman, came under fire Friday for suggesting Gov. Jerry Brown "try shooting" a Republican to persuade them to vote for taxes.
In an interview with Bay Area News Group this week, Burton said Brown "can try shooting somebody and tell the next guy, 'You don't want that to happen to you, you better step up and vote.' "... What's Jerry going to do
unless he took out a gun?"
The comment, made on the eve of the state party's convention kickoff, went over the line, said Mark Standriff, communications director for the state GOP.
"Is it open season on (Republicans) now?" Standriff wrote in a Twitter message.
"Having a salty reputation is no excuse for poor judgment," Standriff later said in an interview. "I'd ask him for an apology, but frankly all I'd expect in return was a well-directed expletive."
The California GOP, Standriff added, is making it "f="our mission to travel the state with open and civil discourse and we'd hope we'd get the same from the other side. To have this happen doesn't seem
to be advancing civil discourse."
Conservative radio talk show host Eric Hogue asked in his own Twitter message: "Is this rhetoric unbecoming of a party chair?"
Sensitivity over violence-laden political remarks has come under scrutiny since the assassination attempt on U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, an Arizona Democrat, that some believe was incited by heated political rhetoric."
A spokesman for Burton said Republicans are in no position to criticize Democrats for using violent political metaphors.
"This is the same party that has an assemblyman talking about picking off Democrats with a .50-caliber rifle," said Tenoch Flores, Burton's spokesman.
He was referring to Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, R-Hesperia, who told the Los Angeles Times that a "full-blown war" and guerrilla tactics were needed to fight Democrats.
"We've got a .50-caliber with cross hairs and "... we're going to pick off two or three of them using this issue," he said, three weeks after Giffords was shot in the head.
As party members on Friday descended on Sacramento for the Democrats' state convention, the party's position in California remains strong.
Democratic registration continues to outpace that of Republicans, Democrats swept all nine statewide offices, including the governorship, successfully defended U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer's seat, and added a seat to their majority in the Assembly. Voters even gave them the power to pass a budget on a majority vote.
Yet the state budget remains mired in a stalemate as Republicans continue to use the power of the two-thirds majority required on taxes to stymie Democratic efforts to close the remaining $15.4 billion deficit.*
Burton's comments reflect a frustration with Republicans shared by many Democrats. This week, Senate Leader Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, suggested targeting budget cuts in Republican districts, an idea that has floated around in Democratic circles for weeks and is being taken more seriously as the stalemate continues.
Democrats are considering cutting services such as the Department of Motor Vehicles, community colleges or parks in districts represented by Republicans, said Bob Blumenfield, D-Los Angeles, the chairman of the Assembly Budget committee.
"If we have to close down a community college, maybe do it in a district of folks who don't believe in government," Blumenfield said. "At some point, we have to look at everything."
Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, who gave a fiery speech on job creation to an environmental caucus at the convention, was not too supportive of the idea."...
*This article leaves the reader thinking the only way to solve California's budget problem is to raise taxes on the middle class, and that despite overwhelming democrat money and power in the state, its entire future is being torpedoed by a few feeble republicans.