Jerry Brown Will Have a Fourth Term as Governor
It won’t be official until November 2014, but with California recovering from the recession and the budget crisis thanks to Democratic leadership, polls show Governor Jerry Brown has a landslide lead in his bid for a fourth term:
If Jerry Brown runs for an unprecedented fourth term as governor of the Golden State, he would trounce all three likely Republican challengers in June’s open primary, according to a new Field Poll.
More than half of registered voters (52 percent) would pick Brown if the primary were held today, and nearly 6 in 10 registered voters say they approve of the job Brown is doing — the governor’s highest approval rating since taking office in January 2011 and an increase of 7 percentage points since July.
Only 11 percent of Californians would vote for former Lt. Gov. Abel Maldonado, and support for state Assemblyman Tim Donnelly and former George W. Bush administration official Neel Kashkari would be in the single digits, the poll finds.
None of these Republicans can beat Brown. It won’t happen. Brown runs a scandal-free office and with California doing well, there’s no appetite for throwing out a successful incumbent. Especially if the alternative is a Republican. Kashkari might have the best chance against Brown, maybe being able to crack 40%, but the wingnut base of what remains of the California Republican Party will almost certainly unite behind Tim Donnelly and send him through to the November election against Brown. If that happens, Brown would probably get above 60% of the vote.
What this means for California high speed rail is that its best champion, and its first champion, will almost certainly be around for four more years to help shepherd the project forward. If Democrats can hang on to their 2/3 supermajorities, then I would not be surprised to see some action in 2015 on finally addressing the state’s transit funding needs.