Whitman breaks silence on Prop 23


Democratic opponent Jerry Brown held a fundraiser Thursday night in Whitman's hometown.

Brown was in Atherton with 50 guests who were described as significant contributors. Earlier there was a little bit of a protest organized by the California Republican Party. The small group shouted for about 15 minutes and then got into a limo and drove away.

The fundraiser is expected to raise an undisclosed amount of cash, which will be revealed in a few days.

However, the news of the day in the governor's race is Whitman's decision to oppose Prop 23.

Last week Whitman told reporters she still hadn't made up her mind on Prop 23 that would suspend California's landmark global climate change laws.

"I'm not dodging it. We'll come out on all the propositions within the next week to 10 days," says Whitman.

Whitman said that eight days ago. Now she's saying she'll vote against Prop 23. Prop 23 would roll back carbon emission standards as long as unemployment in California was above 5.5 percent. Whitman says that standard is too stringent, but at the same time she believes the state's global warming laws are hurting more than helping.

"Today in California, only 1 percent of all jobs are green jobs. Ninety-nine percent of jobs are in the rest of the economy and while we nurture our green economy, we can't hurt the rest of the economy," says Whitman.

So Whitman favors suspending the greenhouse gas laws for a year, until the economy gets better.

"Can we change the implementation schedule so we don't hurt the truckers and we don't hurt the farmers and we don't hurt the manufacturers," says Whitman.

Speaking at a solar instillation company in Newark, Brown said Whitman's position makes no sense.

"Stop and start is exactly what people hate about government. They never can get their act together and keep going," says Brown.

Brown told reporters California has to send a clear message on alternative energy.

"You want to create certainty, you want to create a framework of confidence so that people will invest," says Brown.

ABC7 recognized a few faces walking into the fundraiser for Brown: Ron Diridon from the High Speed Rail Authority, Gloria Duffy from the Commonwealth Club, and Steve Westly, the former state controller that ran for governor in 2006 and lost in the Democratic primary.

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