This morning California's newspapers put photos of Governor Schwarzenegger on the front pages, even in abject defeat. They should have pictured the voters, or if they could have found the image for it, the process of a freewheeling election itself.
Because Schwarzenegger took on the public employee unions, he didn't have the usual advantage that bullying pols enjoy: there was a force with money and people power to contest him. And in a fairer than usual fight, Californians said no to a rightwing celebrity's power grab, yes to education and social services, yes to unions being able to contest corporate power and even, as a bonus, yes to young women's right to choose.
The morning's headlines were indeed sweet; self-indulgently, I'll round up some tidbits here:
Voters Reject Schwarzenegger's Bid to Remake State Government -- Los Angeles Times
This governor role has proven to be an expensive hobby.
Why His 'Sequel' Failed to Captivate -- Los Angeles Times
Enough with the actors already. California faces real problems; let's get on with solving them.
Schwarzenegger faces 'resounding defeat'-- San Jose Mercury News
That's pretty weak; the current districting of the legislature ensures that Democrats will remain in large majorities throughout this decade.
Analysis: A bruising blow from 'the people' -- Sacramento Bee
He always did seem to be an actor with only one character.
CALIFORNIANS SAY NO TO SCHWARZENEGGER-- San Francisco Chronicle [Full caps are the Chron's.]
I'll hazard a prediction here: Arnold will pull out of the governor's race if it looks like a fight for him. I hope the unions and the Democrats in Sacramento don't let up now. Californians deserve better and yesterday they proved they know it.