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Governor’s Tough Talk on Budget

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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) _ Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger blasted the state legislature while speaking in San Francisco on Tuesday for “wasting time” while the state continues to go without a budget.

Lawmakers formally rejected a pair of plans on Tuesday: one from Governor Schwarzenegger and an alternate one put forward by the Democrats.

Schwarzenegger was addressing a Chamber of Commerce Economic Forum and dismissed the votes as “kabuki,” or political theater, coming 62 days after the budget was due.

“Every day that we are late, we are spending $52.5 million more than we are taking in,” he said. “Now, they have basically spent $3 billion and that money is gone.”

President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg said Democrats refuse to cut social programs as deeply as the governor is proposing and defended the votes because they let Californians know exactly who is on which side.

“It’s long past time to debate the differences in the most important place to debate them and that is the floor of the Senate and Assembly,” said Steinberg.

The governor said budget negotiations will restart later this week.

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