The California recall steamroller, which has been gaining momentum for months, rolled over Gov. Gray Davis on Tuesday as the people decided he should be replaced by a Hollywood action hero.
Arnold Schwarzenegger breezed to a surprising victory over a host of alsorans and will assume the governorship as early as next month. Political experts are still divided on what this means to California’s divided government, it’s tattered economy and the national political divide.
It won’t be a smooth road for Arnold. He easily won a recall election in which Californians ousted the highly unpopular Davis who was blamed for everything but the earthquakes. Part of Davis’ demise was the fact that his allies in the legislature abandoned him, offering him up as a political sacrifice to shroud their own shortcomings.
The question remains about how much Schwarzenegger can do considering he must deal with the Democrat-controlled legislature and a budget where much of the money is already spent on Davis’ ill-advised programs.
The recall, though not likely to be repeated anywhere else, serves notice that incumbents aren’t safe unless they prove they are working to improve the economy instead of fortifying their own political stature.
Are you listening Mr. President?