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tv   Gubernatorial Debate  FOX  September 28, 2010 5:00pm-6:00pm PST

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>> protesters are gathered right now outside the mondavi center where jerry brown and meg whitman are set to go face to face in their debate. >> it has been a tense campaign so far with both candidates releasing political ads accusing the other of lying about their records. the most recent field poll but whitman and brown in a tie with many voters still undecided about who will get their vote.
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tonight, they face off live on tv. ktvu tv is the only station where you can watch it live. >> we take you inside the mondavi center live. >> good evening to our television, radio, and internet audience across this state, and beyond. and also good evening to all of you here at ucdavis at jackson hall at the mondavi center. we welcome to this first debate between these two candidates this year. we would like to again thank everyone for being here, and we would like to please welcome the democratic and republican nominees for the governor of the state of california, jerry brown and meg whitman. [ applause ]
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[ applause ] >> our questions coming tonight from our panel of three journalists, amy chance from the sacramento bee, kevin riggs of kcra tv, and marion russ of capitol public radio. and as they take their seats, we should let you know that both campaigns have agreed to keep answers to less than 90 seconds and rebuttals less than 30 seconds. there was a flip of the coin who would design who would get the first question. the first question coming from amy chance. >> california has set a record this day for the delay of our state budget, and there's no end in sight. what would you say to those who say that california is ungovernable? and if it wasn't, how would you end the gridlock?
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>> first of all, let me say thank you to the sponsors of this debate. i'm delighted to be here tonight. i want to talk to you about how we're going to put this state back together. we have one of the most dysfunctional state governments in the country. here's my plan. first, we have to get californians back to work. if we do not put californiians back to work and bring down our 12.4% unemployment rate, there's no way out of this mess. we have the third highest rate only behind michigan and nevada. did you ever think we would have the third highest unemployment in the country? i want to do that by enacting targeted tax cuts. we need to eliminate the factory tax so we can hang on to our manufacturing jobs. i want to stream line red tape so it's not so hard to do business in california, and have
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an economic development team that will get california competitive with other states. and then, of course, we have to attack the cost side of the government. we have a government we can no longer afford. i want to stream line the size of government, i want to use technology, like we do in silicon valley, to do more with less to, bring some of that managerial, innovation and expertise in silicon valley to sacramento. we have to reform welfare and reform the public employee pension benefits as well. that's the outline of the plan. i'm sure we will have more to talk about as we go through the debate tonight. >> is there something specific you would do to reach a budget deal with lawmakers at the capitol in a timely manner? >> well, first, we must start earlier on the budget. you know, the governor puts out his budget in january. then really nothing much happens until the may revise. we need to start working on it earlier. and then i think there's some structural reforms we must do.
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we should go to a two-year budgeting cycle. this business of having our back against the wall, not having the ability to think longer term than three to six months out, so those are two reforms i would make right away. >> mr. brown. >> yes. the budget has never been this late before. i do know something about budgets, i must say, and the budget is always the heart of any kind of democratic society. how much you spend and what you put it in. the budget mess is one of the key characteristics of how screwed things up are in sacramento. how do we get at all? first of all, you have to live within your means. we had a boom, and wall street was going, and dot command all that, and it collapses. and you have to reset, reset 15%, 18%. i authorized an 18% reduction in
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the governor's salary, the legislators' salary, and my own. you start the week after the election. i'll bring all 120 together, and i don't care whether it takes 200 hours, 500 hours, i know that many of these legislators have no idea what's going on in the budget. they are sitting in the bleachers while the big five group, that's the top four legislators and the governor, a quum of people, work it all out behind closed doors. we need a transparcht exhaustive process, and i would start by example. i will say i would cut 15 to 20% out of the governor's office, and i'll say to the legislature, it's your turn next. i'd like to see you get 15 to 20%, and i know they can. and we start with the agencies, and we can go from there. i have done 8 budgets, and they were almost all on time. i know how to do it. i have the willpower, and the independence, and i know a lot of things like the energy commission being compllucketing with other commission -- duplicating with other
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commissions. we can cut. don't believe when people say they have cut to the bone. >> meg whitman, do you have a rebuttal? >> well, there's no question we have a huge challenge on our hands, and mr. brown talks about bringing people together. and my view is he will bring people together after he's elected governor, and it will be a meeting of all the special interests and the unions who are there to collect their ious from the campaign that they have funded. virtually mr. brown's entire campaign has been funded by the public employee unions, and there will be there to collect their ious, and i don't think that's in the best interest of the state of california. we have to do what's right for all the people. we have to renegotiate public employee pension benefits and reform welfare, and those are the two things i will focus on first. >> jerry brown, your last comment on this. >> i don't try to respond to the tv commercial i have seen so much of. but i will say this. one of these targeted tax cuts is targeted to billionaires like ms. whitman and millionaires.
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it's a $5 million tax break that will go to the richest people in california. 82% goes to those making over $500,000. a lot of that money comes from our schools, and that's not fair, and that's not right, and i think it reflects the difference in our values. i want to invest in our schools and protect our schools. i don't want to further enrich the billionaires and millionaires who have been doing pretty well these last few years. >> our next question coming from kevin. >> governor schwarzenegger has issued a reprieve for albert brown. my question is, do you think the process for the death penalty appeals is too lengthy, to involved, and if so, what should be done about it? >> it it is certainly too lengthy, and it has gotten longer during each governor's term after i left. now it takes five years before you get a transcript up to the supreme court for the initial review. i want to say in this respect,
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the death penalty is a serious issue. i expressed my own preference that i would rather have a society that we didn't have so use death as a punishment. that view and preference was overruled by the legislature and by the people in an initiative ballot measure in the past. so we have it. so we have to make it. and as the attorney general, i have defended hundreds of death penalty convictions, but this thing goes on and on forever. you have to appoint the lawyers, the investigators, and unfortunately, it does take money to make the process work in accordance with our supreme court requirements and with the vigilence of the 9th circuit court of appeals that is always looking over our back. having been attorney general and governor, i pledge to the people in the state i will faithfully carry out our law on executions and i will do it with compassion, but i'll do it with great fidelity to the rule of law. >> there a way to speed up the
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appeals? >> given the control by the federal judiciary and the sense tift that many judges have, i would say the only way to speed it up, and it can be done, and ron george the former chief justice said it clearly, you have to appoint the personnel because under the constitution, these men who are condemned have a right to first class representation. and that means get them a lawyer who knows how to conduct a trial, get the transcripts, get the experts, the criminalists that you will need. if we do that, you can speed up this, no question about it. but the legislature never wants to appropriate money for that purpose. >> ms. whitman. >> so i will be a tough on crime governor, no question about it. i have been in support of the death penalty, and for three strikes. i will appoint very conservative judges to the bench who will not legislate but really interpret the constitution. and i think this is a very big contrast between me and jerry
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brown. because jerry has a long, 40-year record of being quite liberal on crime. it started with the appoint of the supreme court justice who tried to overturn the death penalty almost 64 times. she was ultimately recalled from office, and she said once, the only good outcome is an outcome that favors the defense. so i will be tough on crime. i will, you know, enforce the constitution on all dimensions, and i will make sure that we do everything we can to accelerate this appeals employees. the criminal justice league had a request in to jerry brown about how to participate in a federal program that would accelerate the appeals so that you could ultimately implement the death penalty. he hasn't gotten back to them on that, and that's one way to accelerate this. if we do don't this, we are going to be on the brink of
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building another death row facility. i don't think anyone wants to do that. we have so many infrastructure needs in this state, i don't think we want to build another death row infrastructure. >> mr. brown, she tried to draw a contrast saying you're liberal on crime. is she wrong? >> as far as appointing judges, dwight eisenhower appointed one of the most liberal justices in all of history, and he didn't expect that. let's get to the facts. i have been consistent that i will carry out the law regarding executions, and secondly as far as my support of law enforcement officers, it's reflected in the fact that the california police chief's association has solidly almost unanimously endorsed my candidacy for governor as well as about 50 different police organizations including the police officers in oakland where i live and the former police chief is sitting there in the front row next to my wife, and he will tell you we were tough on crime when we fought together in the city of oak laned. >> last comment. >> the record in oakland actually isn't very good.
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when jerry brown left, actually oakland was rated the 4th most dangerous city in america, and homicides had nearly doubled. so actually the truth is he has ben liberal on crime for 40 years, and he has had a little bit of a change of heart on the death penalty saying gee, i'm not morally opposed to, it but for 40 years he has been. so i think the record speaks for itself. >> we get our next question from marian. >> i'd like to go back to the job creation issue. as you mentioned, the state's unemployment rate remains over 12%, yet both parties have instituted policies that encourage corporations and businesses to use cheap overseas labor. could you give us some real specifics about how you would create jobs and how many jobs you think you can create with the policies? >> absolutely. this is one of my biggest priorities is creating jobs because if we do not put californians back to work as i said, there is no way out of this financial mess. so i put together a very
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detailed plan to create two million new private sector jobs by 2015. and the first thing is we have got to make the state more business friendly. we have to put a sign on california once again that says open for business. first, i want to do some targeted tax cuts. as i said, i want to eliminate the factory tax. this is a tax that penalizes manufacturers. if we lose manufacturing, we will lose the soul of our state. we have lost 600,000 manufacturing jobs since 2000, 32% of the base. that can't happen. i want to eliminate the startup tax, which is a big stop sign for budding businessmen. before you pay a single service, you have to pay the state a fee. i want to eliminate that. i also want to make sure we stream line regulation. i have traveled to almost all 58 counties, and every small business tells me they are being strangled by red tape. let's be smart about how we do this. let's create an online
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application so that we can facilitate these small businesses getting going. and then last, we're going to have to have an economic development team that competes for jobs. the fact is we are being outpeated by texas, colorado, utah, arizona, those governors are showing a real interest in our business. i was with rick perry, the governor of texas, who said i come on hunting trips to california. he said he comes hunting for businesses because they have a better business environment. >> that could local governments that are struggling with a loss in property tax. how do you justify that? >> my view is that actually if we can eliminate the factory tax, that will mean more jobs, more companies in california, so we will have higher tax revenues. the truth is, we are not competitive to neighboring states. 30 or 40 years ago, maybe we didn't have so much competition, but we do now, and we have to examine every tax and regulation
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and say are we competitive to neighboring states? without jobs, there's no way out of this. and we have to do a better job of keeping companies in california and making sure that we get the expansion opportunities as well. no company should put a call center in phoenix, arizona. they should put it in fresno or stockton. >> mr. brown, how would you create jobs for california? >> quite differently than my ms. whitman. she has the values if you give it to wall street, things will be well. but we have seen the results of that. there's nothing worse than unemployment. losing a job hurts the whole family, and there's 2 million people in that situation. at the same time, those in poverty have increased. there's now 5.5 million californians that are below the poverty line. i have a specific line. it's not to give a $5 million
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tax break to myself. my plan is to invest in clean energy, the green tech of the future. i don't want to go back to the 19th century and listen to the oil companies from texas. i want is to stand firm on our chiment and new energy -- climate and new energy jobs bill. i don't want to suggestion penned it. and -- suspend it. and we can build and become the leader in wind and solar and geothermal in efficiency. we can get the transmission lines built. when i was governor, california was the world leader in renewable energy. we can do that again. when i was may oh, i cut red tape. i got rid of dumb rules, and we got 10,000 people to move into oakland. so i know how to cut the red tape. i have a plan. it's on my web page. it's about investing in california, not giving tax
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breaks to the fortunate and privileged. >> you talked about green jobs, but that's only a small portion of the state's economy. what about the rest of the economy? >> it's the part that's growing. when i talk about green jobs, i mean hiring young men and women in the roofing companies i've seen in southern and northern california. you can put people to work retrofitting the inefficient buildings in california by the hunss of thousands. from the energy policies that were created when i was governor, over a million jobs were created over a 30-year period. so yes, it takes time. this is not something that's going to be turned around overnight, but let's invest in the jobs of the future. i did it before, and i can do it again. >> jerry brown, thank you for that. we will give the last word on this topic to meg whitman. >> i'm sure we will have a chance to ab32 farther on in the debate, but the truth is 3% of the jobs come from green jobs, and 97% come from the rest of
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the economy, and i want to focus on making sure that the employees who work for those companies don't lose their job through expansions of the businesses or the businesses shutting down because it's more competitive to go elsewhere. and texas has the very best business climate in the country. it is not a perfect state by any means, but they have om budsmen in charge of every industry. they are recruiting industries because they have low corporate taxes, low personal income taxes, and most importantly, they break through the red tape so it's easy to do business as opposed to challenging to do business. >> for those of you in our radio audience and elsewhere who may be joining us right now, you are listening at a live debate, the first ever between jerry brown and meg whitman live from the uc davis. our questions continue from our panelists back to amy chance. >> mr. brown, given your years of public service, you would receive a pension of about $78,000 a year if you were to
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retire next year. given you're talking about cutting costs in the state pension system, why should voters expect you to rein in the system that has been a source for you of financial support. >> let's get something real clear. if everybody in state service worked as long as i have, the pejs system would be overfunded by 50%. if they all want to stay around until 72, if you elect me governor, i won't collect until i'm '76, if i get a second term, it will be '80. so i'm the best pension buy california has ever seen. okay? now, in addition to that, when i was leaving the governor's office in 1982 budget document, i said we have a problem here. you better think about creating a two-tiered pension system to lower the cost of state government. that was back in 1928, and the next three -- 1982, and the next three governors ignored.
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i have a pension plan. it's on my web page. first of all, we have to negotiate with the different employee groups. we have to raise ages, we have to raise contributions, we have to stop this thing where they take the last one year and they spike it up, and then they use that as the measurement for their lifelong pension. when i was governor, you used the last three years and averaged them. somewhere down the road, they got rid of three years and made it one. in addition, we have a lot of abuses at the local level. i brought civil fraud actions against eight officials in bell, california. i'm going to get that money back. that's excessive and a waste of public funds, and it's an abuse of their responsibility. we can get this thing done. i want to say one more thing. the salary commission has a right to set standards to stop the excess, and i will put that in as one of my first goals. >> for all your experience in the private sector, you have not have a lot of experience with
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labor negotiations. ebay didn't have unionized labor. how can you be confident that you can follow through to cut state employee pensions and do the negotiating work? >> the first thing is you cannot be beholden to the public sector employees. if your campaign is funded by them, it's hard to negotiate. and we have got to stand up and be counted here. today, the public employee pension system is underfunded by 60 to $100 billion. we owe more money than we can possibly pay, and you know who is on the hook for it? the taxpayers. here is what we need to do, take retirement ages up. today, a rank and file civil servant can retire at 55 years old with much of their salary and hair healthcare benefits until the -- their healthcare benefits until the day they day. i want to increase the age to 65, increase vesting periods, make sure the employees
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contribute in a greater way, and new people have to come in under a different deal. they have to come under a 401k style program much like everyone in the private sector does today. this will not be easy. the next governor of california, i believe, has got to have the spine of steel. the next governor has to know exactly what she believes, and she needs to stick with it because there will be tremendous push back by the unions because they do not want to change. but we have to change. because today, we spend over $3.9 billion out of a general fund of $85 billion supporting these public pension benefits, and it's simply not sustainable. >> how specifically would you work with the union sns>> well, the governor has three levers to get this done. first, and this is my preferred approach, is negotiation, and some unions have come to the table. the california highway patrol has come to the table with constructive ideas. down in orange county, they negotiated with their sheriff to
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take the retirement up. but second, we may have to go to the ballot with an initiative to go in front of the people of california to take back control of their government. we are losing control of the government by a bloated bureaucracy, with more people than we have ever had working for it. so we have to use all the things that we have at our disposal to get this done. it's absolutely essential. >> jerry brown, we will give you the last word on this. >> this is a little bit like the kettle calling the pot black. talking about union contributions, she has raised $25 million, enormous number, and i would bet you the majority will get an immediate tax break from her key economic plan which is to eliminate totally the california capital gains tax. and as i said, that 5 billion comes right out of the general fund, and half of the general fund goes to schools. it's from schools, kids, and
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teachers who i think need to be protected from cuts to the most powerful and big campaign contributors of meg whitman. by the way, as far as unions, i'm the only governor that ever vetoed the pay raises for all public employees. i did it once, i did it twice. i'll do it again if i have to. >> we have a lot of topics to cover. kevin, you're next. >> this question goes to focus and preparation for the job. ms. whitman, you have apologized for your failure to vote for most of your adult life. my question is has your failure to participate in california's complex initiative process left significant gaps for you in your understanding of california public policy? >> well, first of all, i am not proud of my voting record. and i have apologized for it, and tonight i apologize to everyone in california. it was not the right thing to do, and no one is more embarrassed by it than me. if i could change history, i would. but what i can do is tell voters about how i believe we can turn this state around. this state is in an enormous
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mess. and i'm a big believer. you know, einstein said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and hoping for different results. we have to challenge the status quo in sacramento. and i want to answer one of the charges that governor brown just said. you know, i have put my own money in this campaign. i have raised a lot of money. that's because many people believe in my vision for a new california. but what that gives me, it gives me the independence to go to sacramento, not beholden to the special interests. and i promise you, if you elect me the next governor of california, i will not owe anything to anyone, and i will do what is right for the people of california because there won't be anyone to collect ious from me. >> mr. brown, the flip side of my question, the last time you were governor, you ran for president twice, the first time within two years of taking office. what assurances can you offer voters this time around should be elected you would focus on this job? >> age.
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if i was younger, i would be running again. at 74, i'm ready. one more thing, i have a life, and i come home at night. i don't try to close down the bars of sacramento like i used to do when i was governor of california. so i'm going to spend more time in sacramento. i'm going to get it done. don't worry about that. i'm in for the duration here. i have got the know. by the way, this business about insanity repeating what we have, we have a man who i very much like, arnold schwarzenegger, but he was from the private sector. he said he was beholden to no one. he was putting his own money into the campaign, and it, you know, he was a guy who was running the state like a business. it didn't work out that way. it does take know how, and public service has meant a great deal from my earliest years.
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my father when i was five years old ran and was elected district attorney of san francisco, and i watched him go through the ranks. i have lived in this state all my life, and i love it. and god willing, i will spend the rest of my life in this state. >> a chance for rebuttal, meg whitman. >> jerry brown has no experience changing sacramento for the positive. if you look at his record for governor, he took a surplus and turned it into a deficit. unemployment nearly doubled to what was then a record 11%. as mayor of oakland, he was not successful at turning around the school system. he xaned as the education mayor and made a promise to the people of oakland that he would turn their school system around. three years later, the school system was $100 million in debt, and the state had to come in and take it over. so jerry brown has experience
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raising taxes, increasing spending, and not delivering on his promises. so i think you have to just look at the experience and say, what do we need? and my view is we need a governor who knows how to get california back to work. >> last word to you, mr. brown. >> i only have 30 seconds for this. >> yes. >> to refute all the misstatements would take me about a minute and a half, but i will try to go fast. california created 1.9 million jobs during the eight years i was governor. that surplus didn't drop down from the tooth fairy. i created that thing. i had to veto bills and fight with the legislators. i had a guy, the treasure, he called my plus obscene. nobody is tougher with a buck than i am. >> marian, you get the any question. >> this next question comes from a student here at uc davis. as governor, would you roll back all of the funding cuts to the
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uc, scu, and community college systems, why or why not? >> not my first year, with a $19 billion deficit. we have to get real here. i certainly don't want to see them go up. the university is something i love. i went to the university of california, so did my mother. when she went, the tuition was $22 a semester, when i went, 30 years later, it was 120, and now it's higher than that. i care about this university, it's the key to our future, not only our technological future, but our intellectual and civic future. so i'm going to do everything i can to protect the university and to advance its cause. we're going to do that by being tough on the budget. you know, getting real with these legislators, living within our means, and building up a surplus, and certainly not driving a hole in the general fund of $5 billion giving this
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tax break to the wealthy because the university did he rives all of its -- derives all of its state support from the general fund. so yes, i care about the university. i try to -- i will hold down the fees as best i can, but we're in a tough bind, and we all have to sacrifice. i would say those at the top, those at the heights of our economy should tuck in our belts first. >> are you pledging to hold the line -- >> i will do the best i can. i have one vote as the chairman, and the last time, i used to have a few disagreements with the regents. i would love to roll back the fees. i would love to have a freeze, but that would require either the university becoming a lot more efficient than it is or the state finding billions of dollars that it doesn't yet have. one way or the other, we will protect uc.
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>> ms. whitman. >> it blaeks my heart, every day, i talk to children who are at uc and have had to take a semester off. i ran into a young man the other day that couldn't go back to school because fees had gone up by 32% and his father had lost his job. here's my plan. higher education is one of the gems of our education system in california. of the top 15 public universities in the country, we have six of them. so while we are fixing k through 12 education, which i'm sure we will talk about in a minute, we cannot lose our innovation edge, which is uc and csu. i want to reduce costs of this government and take a billion dollars and put it back in the uc system. we have to get back to an employee count of where we were just five years ago. the state now has more
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bureaucrats than active duty personnel in the u.s. navy. we have to reform our pension program as we have talked about. we have to reform our welfare program. today, we have 12% of the population of the united states, and 32% of them welfare cases. we have five times the welfare cases of new york, and only twice the population. and it's a budget issue, but a strength of our community issue. we have to put californians back to work. welfare can't become a way of life. i have some very specific plans to reform welfare, take some of that savings and put it back in higher education. and last, we have to run the government more efficiently. i know what's ironic? we have the most dysfunctional state government, and i come from a part of the state where we have the most innovative companies in the world. we need to take some of that expertise and innovation and run the government more efficiently so we can invest the things we care about. >> what about the fee hicks hikes themselves? would you use that money to
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hold the line? >> i would put it to the chancellors and say how do you think we should best use this money? if we can give you back a billion dollars over the next two or three years, would you want to invest that in research, faculty, reduce fees? what's the best way to make your campuses great for every child? i would ask them since they are battling the challenges of the budget every day. >> let's go to the next question. >> ms. whitman, fact checking organizations in this campaign have concluded that many of your ads are misleading or even worse. how can voters trust you to communicate with them honestly about the state's problems when you're willing to distort the truth to win a campaign? >> i don't agree with the premise of your question, and let's take one ad which i know has received a lot of attention, which was the bill clinton ad talking about jerry brown's record of governor. and let's dissect this for a minute because i stand by that
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ad. let's look what bill clinton actually said. cnn said governor brown had taken a $6 billion surplus to a $1 billion deficit. absolutely correct. he also said that taxes were higher, and in fact the only error in the facts were the taxes were not higher 8 out of 8 years, they were 6 out of 8. and on average, taxes were higher in his administration than under ronald reagans. i stand by the ad. jerry brown doesn't like the ad because it calls out his record. he likes my positive ads about the vision that i have for california even less because, in fact, we are going to upend the status quo. we cannot continue to do things the way we have historically done them. and i want to reform the pension system. i want to reform education. and by the way, many of the unions who are so deeply entrenched in sacramento, they don't want any changes to the things that i know parents and
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others in california desperately want. if we do not reform our education system, our welfare system, our pension system, there's not going to be a way out of this mess. so i stand by the ads. they are an accurate portrayal of governor brown's record. >> mr. brown, you have run an ad depicting your opponent's nose growing. >> yes. it's a hell of an ad. >> are you happy with that ad? >> and pinnochio is waiting by to extend that nose. i want to tell you, $6 billion, remember it was 1974, when i ran for governor. the state was in recession, and there was a deficit. it just so happened we came back quickly, and after a year, we had a $500 million surplus, but i turned that into 5 billion. a lot of is economic growth and jobs, but it is also this spine of steel stuff when i said no to democrats and legislators, to
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unions, and the business. by the way, business like to to get their tax breaks, and if you add up all the ones that ms. whitman is advocating, it's 17 billion, and one more thing on the school business. i advocated we have charter schools. i didn't say i could fix the unionfied school district. they have their own government. they are elected directly the people. it's a separate jurisdiction from the mayor, and no mayor n california can control a school. what i said was we should create charter schools. my idea was that charter schools would show innovation and put competitive pressure on the rest of the school district. that's how it worked. as a matter of fact, the man that brof me to bankruptcy, i didn't want him hired, i wanted
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him fired. >> meg whitman, you look like you want to respond. what do you think about mr. brown's response saying he likes the ads? >> the other thing that was absolutely true in the clinton ad is governor brown opposed proposition 13. he said it was a fraud and, you know, just recommended it not be passed. the voters were fit to be tied. they had had it with ever escalating property taxes. governor brown was sitting on a huge surplus which he refused to give back to the people. proposition 13 passed, and yet didn't align the cost structure of the state and ended up with a budget deficit. but you know what drives me crazy about career politicians, they refuse to accept accountability. governor brown xaned on being the education -- campaigned on being the education mayor, and now he says mayor couldn't really do it, it was hard to make it happen. well, the parents and the kids were counting on governor brown when he was mayor to make those changes. so you know what? if i am governor of california, you can hold me
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accountable for the things that i say, the things i do, and i think that's going to be one of the most important changes we have to make in politics. politicians have to be accountable. >> thank you. >> i would like to say, yes i oppose proposition 13. i think pete wilson our campaign chairman did as well. i campaigned all over the state against it, and we're now seeing some of the problems with all the power going up to the state capitol, breaking just into gridlock. but here's the real important point. i want to leave this clear message. in the november election, howard jarvis himself voted for me, even did a campaign commercial. what he said was brown opposed it, i wrote proposition 13, but he made it work. and i made 13 work by building up a surplus and bailed out the local governments so we could save our teachers and police and our fire. that's know how, and that's why i'm running for governor because i think i can do it again.
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>> kevin. >> this question wants to know whether you see any positive impacts for california on immigration and do you support a path to legalization for those in california illegally? >> yes, i do, and i support a path to legalization as part of a federal comprehensive reform bill. and i think this is where i differ from my opponent. secure the borders, geted a real, verifiable electronic identification system. make people compensate for any violations of the law. but at the end of the day, we have a couple million people in the shadows, and this has to be a process as president bush and even he said that, and mccain in his earlier days said the same thing, and kennedy and a lot of very thoughtful people said, we have to find a way. we can't round them and up and deport them like they did in eastern europe. we have to find a path to
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citizenship. and i think if we do, and we secure the borders, and i want to do one more thing. i've worked with the immigration service. i've signed an agreement called secure communities. every person arrested, their fingerprints are taken, and they are sent to my office, and i now send them to the immigration office. if they are found to be here illegally, they are made subject to deportation. i think we're going to work on illegal immigration. let's start with those who break the law. let's get them deported while we work for the overall comprehensive immigration reform. >> and a quick follow up, were workplace inspections a part of the solution? >> workplace inspections are a part of the solution. i don't think the state of california and our police departments that don't want to do this, that's something the federal government can do. but we do have 2 million people here, and we ought to get at the business of comprehensive reform, and in the meantime, any time one of these illegal people, undocumented, commits a
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crime is arrested, they will be subject to deportation. >> ms. whitman, do you support a path to legalization? >> i wouldn't pour a support a path to legalization. we have to get our arms around what is a very pressing problem. and here's my plan for solving our immigration problem. first is we have to secure the borders of the united states of america. i spent a day on the border between mexico and california, and we have not given those agents the resources they need. they don't have infrared technology or motion detector technology. second, we do have to hold employers accountable for hiring only documented workers, and we have to enforce that law. and third, we have to eliminate sanctuary cities. the worst case is, of course, san francisco. but i want to couple that with a temporary guest worker program for some of our industries like agriculture. agriculture is desperately in need of a very good temporary guest worker program so they can
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pick the crops of the agricultural business. so that's where i stand. we have got to prove to americans and californians that we can solve this immigration problem, and then let's get about doing that. and i have been, by the way, i think very balanced and very fair about this. i from the beginning said i was not for prop 187. i just didn't think it was the right thing to take a k through 12 primary education away from children. and i also said i didn't think the arizona law was right for california. it was too devicive and tangle -- divisive, and i was going to be tangled up in lawsuits. i know we can do this, but it takes a governor who can stand up and be counted on this. >> how would you pay for workplace inspections given california's dire straits? >> the cost of illegal immigration is significant in our budget. if we can hold employers accountable for hiring documented workers, that will be a budget positive. and we have to work with our federal law enforcement as well as local law enforcement to
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enforce this illegal immigration is just that. it is illegal. and we have to stop the magnet. most people -- most illegal immigrants i believe come here for the jobs. we have to go to the source and make it, you know, enforce the laws on the books. we are a rule of law, and i think it's important to enforce it. >> just a note to our listeners and viewers out there who are joining us, you are listening and watching a special live broadcast of the first gubernatorial debate between jerry brown and meg whitman. we are live at the uc davis. our debate continues right now with capitol public radio marian russ. >> this next question is about campaign finance. ms. whitman, please address the criticism out there you are trying to buy the office of governor and tell us whether anything you have learned through the process would affect your views on the state's campaign finance laws. zblif invested a lot of money in
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this campaign, and the reason is i'm up against a lot of significant forces. through the last five years, the unions in california have spent over $3 million in politics in california. but i think californians are really smart. i don't think you can buy elections. i think californians are too smart. what you can do is get your message out and tell californians what your view is of the way forward, and that is what i have tried to do. i want to get jobs going again in california. i have three really important priorities. jobs being one, governor efficiency being number, and getting our schools back in order. it is not okay that our schools are rated near the bottom of the barrel. so that's what i have done. invested my own money so that i have the independence. i said earlier, you know what? that independence allows me to go to sacramento, break glass, change how things are done there. you know, if you want someone who will just go along and not
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really fundamentally change what is wrong with sacramento, then i'm not your candidate. we have got to fundamentally change how this state runs. we have to redo how the budget is done. we have to think about how to spend money differently, and we have to have a business friendly state. so that's why i've invested my own money, and i think it gives me the independence. >> what about the campaign finance laws? any changes? >> it wouldn't be the first inning i would tackle. in a big believer, in a crisis, you can only focus on a small number of things. my total focus in the first couple of years of my administration is getting californians back to work, making sure we hold on to manufacturing, and high tech, and biotech, and making sure the agricultural industry thrives as opposed to interesting very challenges given lack of water. >> the question for you, mr. brown. you have long-standing ties to labor organizations in this state, many of whom who have
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spent millions supporting your campaign. how will you be able to remain independent on questions about state worker pay and benefits? >> well, when it comes to pay, whether it's professors, administrators, union members, i don't think there's nobody who has taken a more no nonsense approach. i was leneledary for my -- legendary for my frugality. i believe i'm the only governor that vetoed the excessive pay raises of all the state employees, not once, but twice. and i was the first governor, i believe, to call for the two-tier pension system. now, look, unions, yeah, they have their problems. but what about business over here? i mean, business where the folks who are lobbying washington got all the regulations cut back, deprived the attorney generals of their power to protect borrowers from fraud and abuse, and we lost over a trillion in california because of the abuse of the
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practices of wall street, the mortgage bankers countrywide, and as attorney general, i have been suing those people. so we have to be vigilant, whether it's labor or business. but i have to say something about our teachers and the people who clean bedpans and hospitals, our policemen and firemen. i mean, they are the people who really have embarked upon public service as a calling. and yes, they should act as public servants and i hold them to that high standard. but i cherish and appreciate the work they do, and when there's excess, i will stop it. we tried this business of the inexperienced private sector person coming in with a spine of steel, and they are eaten by the shark invested waters of sacramento. i won't. you have something on campaign reform. i have a very good thing on that. the chairman of commerce has a secret slush fund that they use
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for meg whitman to attack me. that's her friend, pete wilson, the chair of her chain. i would like her to -- her campaign. i would like her to tell the chairman to please disclose the donors to the adds you're running on television. i would like to see 24-hour disclosure, whether it's strictly formal campaign committee or one of those kind of questionable nonprofits that are spending millions not only in california, but throughout the country. >> i want to go to amy, but first a chance to respond. >> the fact that jerry brown is trying to distance himself from the labor unions is amazing to me because the labor unions and jerry brown have been joined at the hip for 40 years. my view is putting jerry brown in charge of negotiating with the labor unions around pensions, around how many people we have in the state government is like putting count dracula in charge of the blood bank. the fact is, nothing will get
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done. and we have got to make very serious charges here. you know, just over the last five years, the number of employees at the state level has ballooned by 33,000 people. no family has been expanding like that, businesses have been cutting back. we have got to run this government more efficiently. we have to have a government we can afford. we need to use technology to figure out how we do more with less. we need to use technology to find the fraud that is embedded in the system. estimates are that there's $5 billion worth of fraud embedded in the medicare and med cal system, and because we haven't had the strength of character to go after that, i want to empanel a grand jury so if people are ripping off the strait of california, they are -- the state of california, they are going to go to jail. it's not just acceptable that we allow fraud in the system and not go after it. >> jerry, i will give you the last word. >> when i ran for attorney general, in the primary, the
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california teachers association, the firefighters, and the building trades all, you know, supported my opponent. so i know how to stand up against people, and i know how to work with people. by the way, meg whitman says she wants to change the pension system, but when it came to police and fire who are powerful, and by the way, represent 25% of the pension system, she carved out an exception, and she wants the defined benefit plan which she says is so bad. i think that's a reflection that when powerful forces come, she will cave. i have been in the kitchen. i know the heat. i can take it. i have the know how, and yes, i have the spine and the intelligence and the wisdom, and at my age, the independence to do what's right. >> all right, our last question tonight will come from amy chance from the sacramento bee. we just want to make sure and keep the candidates to time so we can have enough time for closing statements. amy. >> mr. brown, ensuring all of california has enough water will be an issue for the next
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governor. would you support requiring northern californians to use less water so there's enough to ship south? and would you support a peripheral canal to go around the delta to deliver water to southern california? >> i would support whatever will bring us more efficiency in water and more conservation. we thought 25 years ago that we needed a lot more energy than we now know we can get along with because we're very efficient, and technology has helped us. as far as the canal, of course, i in 1991 brought the legislature together, and had a peripheral canal built that would have brought water to southern california. unfortunately, northern california didn't like that, and there was a referendum, and my professional was voted down by the people. but that shows you you have to negotiate and bring in all parties. so here's my proposal on the water. we have to have this principle. when you benefit directly from
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water. you have to pay. the beneficiary has to pay if they get the water, not the general taxpayer. if it's for habitat protection or building the levees, that's something the public has to pay for. if we work with local communities on ground water management, do better there, if we make it easier for water transfers, and we build the conveyances that make sense, then i think we can deal with the water, which is first of all by the way one other thing, you have to assure safe drinking water. there's some kids in the central valley that have birth defects and we're finding some real problems with pollution. safe water, water conservations, and the beneficiary and the taxpayer supports the general benefits that would accrue. >> i need to jump in and give the same question to meg whitman. >> turns our backs on water is turning our backs on jobs.
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i was a proponent of the water bond that was kicked to 2012. it was not perfect by any means. there was pork in that bond, but i come from the real world where you actually have to get things done. and sometimes, perfect is the enemy of progress. so i thought this had all the elements. it had above and below ground storage, it had an outline for the peripheral canal, there were conservation measures put in there, and there would be more water for the delta to restore the health of the delta and also for the farmers. i think that was a great blueprint. it was a bipartisan group of environmentalists and water owners and agency that came to a view that was correct. that's my stand on water. we have a humanitarian crisis going on in the central valley. it's not right that we have communities with 35% unemployment. >> would you pour conservation in northern -- would you support conservation in northern california to get more water? >> sacramento just got water meters, so we have to do a
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better job of conserving water across the state, no question about it. but the water bond was the right path. >> all right. we have just enough time right now to give the final word to both of our candidates here tonight. and it was decided that meg whitman would give her final statement first. >> first of all, thank you for hosting the debate. and the reason that i am running for governor of california is i refuse to believe this state, our beautiful state, cannot be better than it is. and make no mistake about it, i think we face some of our worst challenges in the last 30 years, and you all know the statistics. and my view is if we are going to change the direction of the state, we're going to have to do it very differently. i said earlier, i thought einstein had it right. the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and hoping for a different result. and my approach is anchored in focus. i want to do thee thrintion really well -- three things really well. restore the faith that the people of california can have in
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their government. all trust has been lost. the legislator has a 9% approval rating. we are down to blood relatives and paid staffers at this juncture. we have to prove to the people we can turn this state around. and i will do that. i have the independence to do it, and i also, you know, i am a big believer in the power of many. the people of california are the most compassionate, the most entrepreneurial, and the most courageous of any in the country. if we bind together, we can do this. we can make the golden state golden again. i would very much appreciate your vote and support on november 2nd. >> jerry brown. your final statement. >> to tell you the truth, i did think long and hard about whether i should run for governor again. i have been there. this is not an easy job, and certainly, i don't think it's a job that because you know how to run a private business, you can
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run government. it's entirely different, more complicated and different than a business. but i thought about it, and i have been looking at government from every angle, from my earliest childhood. my first job was a community college trustee elected in los angeles, and then later i was secretary of state and governor and mayor in a tough city. in the neighborhood my wife and i lived, there were nine murders within nine blocks. i walked the streets, and i saw it, and that gives me determination to try to make things better. and i felt, look, i have the know how, the experience, and at this point in my life, i have more insight, and i believe more independence. so that's one of the major differences. know how and experience. secondly, my values are different in some important respects. i would not give millionaires and billionaires a big $5 billion tax break. in a good year, it might be as much as 11 billion. it has been that high in the past. i think we have to invest in our
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people. we have to protect our schools, and we have to all work together with those that are the most powerful sacrificing first. i like to say those are the biggest belts, tuck them in first. and finally, my vision about how to go from here is different. i believe unlike ms. whitman we should not suspend ab32, our climate change energy bill. we should stay the course and create those new green jobs. >> all right. jerry brown, meg whitman, thank you both for being here tonight. thank you to our panelists for asking the right kinds of questions. and of course, thank you all for being here for what we hope has been an informative hour focusing on the issues that are most critical to californians in this crucial election year. thank you for being here. good night. [ applause ]
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[ applause ] >> tonight's debate has been sponsored by: this has a special presentation. >> you have been watching gubernatorial candidates meg whitman and jerry brown face off in their first debate. we will have reaction in a special edition of ktvu channel 2 news at 7:00. >> just in the past half hour, the situation on california's death row has changed. why this week's execution is now off. plus the bay area county is opting out of an enforcement law. all next at 7:00.


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