Do you think that California will be forced to recall their famous AB 32?



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    I do not. California’s Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, also known as AB (Assembly Bill) 32, was passed and signed into law by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2006. The law establishes greenhouse gas emissions targets for the state of California that are almost in line with those recommended by the 1997 Kyoto Protocols, which the United States has refused to ratify (the only major nation in the world who has not ratified). Naturally, California’s emissions caps have been fought by interests who oppose action on climate change. There is a drive afoot to put a measure on the ballot called the California Jobs Initiative, which seeks to scrap AB 32 if unemployment in the state does not drop to 5.5 percent.  (There is no state in the union, much less California, that is going to have 5.5% unemployment by 2012–it’s just not possible).  Not surprisingly, the initiative is being funded largely by oil companies.  However, trying to overturn already established and implemented law through the ballot process is an uphill battle.  You have to go out and gather the signatures–an expensive process–and then weed through the ones that are ineligible, false or otherwise unacceptable.  Once you certify the good signatures you have to get the measure on the ballot and get a majority of voters in California to vote in favor of it.  Politically California is contentious, having a lot of staunch Democrats and some very vocal conservative Republicans, but the state leans reliably left; if it did not, Democratic presidential candidates could not count reliably on California’s 55 electoral votes in every election since the Reagan era. I think repealing AB 32 will be a tough sell to the voters especially in Democratic enclaves like San Francisco and Marin County, even assuming L.A. and San Diego vote yes (which is not a very reliable assumption).  So, I think AB 32 is here to stay.

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