Prison guards threaten Schwarzenegger

September 8, 2008 6:05:11 PM PDT
Governor Schwarzenegger says he won't back down in the face of a recall drive just launched against him.

An historic recall propelled Governor Schwarzenegger into public office nearly five years ago, replacing then-Governor Gray Davis.

Now, Schwarzenegger is the target of another recall to kick him out of office initiated by the very rich and powerful prison guard union that got the required 65 citizen signatures and filed a Notice of Intent with the Secretary of State's office.

"He's lost the faith of Californians, and he's lost the faith of his own party. You've got Conservative talk show hosts that are talking about wanting Gray Davis back," said Lance Corcoran from California Prison Guards' Union.

It's no secret the prison guards have been at odds with Governor Schwarzenegger for two years. Union negotiators have been unable to get either a pay raise, or a contract.

"I will not be intimidated by anybody that that is demanding more money that the state cannot afford, and steals more than the state is wanting to give," said Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) California.

But the prison guards insist the recall is not about their contract.

Instead, it's about things like Schwarzenegger's lack of leadership in breaking the budget stalemate and the state's ever growing deficit.

While both parties agree this is a distraction to current budget negotiations, Republicans and Democrats say the Governor has it coming.

"There's not a lot of things this Governor has done that I agree with in the last year or two," said Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (R) Irvine.

"I think the Governor is the responsible party for the budget crisis," said Assemblyman Mark Leno (D) San Francisco.

And if you think this recall is just for show, one of the groups that led the successful ousting of Governor Davis asked the prison guards if it can help, giving this movement some credibility.

"They have lost their way in the corner office, lost their way in the California State Capitol, and they need a shaking up," said recall supporter Ted Costa.

The Governor has a week to respond to the prison guards' recall petition. After that, they need approval from the Secretary of State's office and more than a million signatures to actually get it on a ballot next year for a special election.


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