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Schwarzenegger selects Maldonado for Lt. Governor

Maybe Karma even applies to politics. Or maybe it’s just mutual backscratching…. :-)

Today, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said on The Jay Leno Show that he would appoint State Senator Abel Maldonado (R-Santa Maria) to fill the lieutenant governor’s job left vacant by John Garamendi, who was recently elected to Congress to fill another vacancy.

If the name “Abel Maldonado” sounds somehow familiar to you, I wrote about him in February as one of those rarest of individuals, a hero in the field of politics. That blog entry describes a bit of State Senator Maldonado’s biography and his acts of valor in helping to pass a budget for the “common good” of the people of California at a critical time. (What’s that you say? That’s his JOB? Tell that to almost ALL of the OTHER Senators and Assembypeople, of BOTH major parties in CA!)

Maldonado’s critical help in passing a state budget was mentioned by Schwarzenegger, according to the Sacramento Bee, which cited an NBC transcript. The Bee article quoted Schwarzenegger’s description of Maldonado as a man who “makes decisions based on what’s best for the people rather than what’s best for the party.” A statement released by Schwarzenegger’s office said that, “Sen. Maldonado has proven he has the strength and courage it takes to reach across the partisan divide and put the interests of Californians first, and he is absolutely the most qualified person to take on the role of lieutenant governor.”

The California Legislature, overwhelmingly Democratic and not known for its ability to compromise (on EITHER side of the aisle), has 90 days to act on Maldonado’s appointment. I once published the dictionary definitions of “compromise” in this blog because the concept is so foreign to the State Legislature, and I know that SOME people in the State Capitol’s zip code read this blog. :-) Hope springs eternal….

The petty political bickering, squabbling, and vote-counting have already begun, as evidenced by comments in the Sacramento Bee article. I will be surprised if they quiet anytime soon.

Maldonado also championed the minimum-wage increase supported by Schwarzenegger in 2006, despite the opposition of other Republicans in business and farming.

All in all, Abel Maldonado appears to be one of the most honorable people in the State Legislature (whether you agree with his politics or not). We shall all have to wait and see whether honor means anything at all in California politics. (There goes that HOPE, springing eternal again….)

Good luck, Senator Maldonado, and thank you again for your efforts on behalf of the people of the state of California.

-Bill at Cheshire Cat Photo™

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