California Gov. Jerry Brown
Gov. Jerry Brown has spoken frequently and critically of the legislature’s tendency to produce too many small, trifling, insignificant bills -- often with little consideration or debate.
"They've given me 600 bills and there's not 600 problems that we need those solutions for," Brown said recently.
But that didn’t stop the governor from signing most of them -- and selling his approval of such bills as significant action.
For the last several days, the governor’s office has produced press releases that trumpet his signing of dozens of these bills. The releases suggest that signing or vetoing bills has produced real policy change:
“Governor Brown Takes Action to Improve Public Safety and Help Law Enforcement”
“Governor Brown Takes Action to Boost Public Health”
“Governor Brown Takes Action to Improve Education”
“Governor Brown Takes Action to Promote Renewable Energy and Protect the Environment”
And so on.
As political sins go, this is a very minor one.
The press office is putting a happy face on bills, and announcing packages of bill decisions on similar topics in a way that makes life a little easier for reporters. (Thank you). And bills do have impact.
But Brown might consider going a little easier on the legislature bashing, at least for a while. He signed more than 80 percent of the bills in consideration. That’s a lot of new laws. And his approval suggests that the governor thought that at least most of what the legislature produced was worthwhile.