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McCain to back Meg Whitman for California governor

Original post made by Sharon, Midtown, on May 29, 2009

The stage at an Orange County rally where she is scheduled to appear Friday has been draped with oversized banners with the slogan
"Meg 2010, A New California."

The former eBay chief executive is expected to be endorsed at the rally by former Republican presidential nominee John McCain.
She has yet to formally declare her candidacy for the race.

Good luck

Comments (18)

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Posted by looking on
a resident of Menlo Park
on May 29, 2009 at 11:30 am

Well McCain's endorsement should be the kiss of death to her bid.

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Posted by The Real Sharon
a resident of Midtown
on May 29, 2009 at 11:50 am

Sharon--when will Meg Whitman release her medical records? What does she have to hide?

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Posted by Sharon
a resident of Midtown
on May 29, 2009 at 12:04 pm

Here is more detail Web Link

Be great to have a competent businesswoman as Gov

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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on May 29, 2009 at 1:26 pm

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

I'll wait and see what Palin says about her.

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Posted by George
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on May 29, 2009 at 2:53 pm

How'd McCain do in CA when he ran for President??? Give me a break. The only Republican that's got a shot in this state is Poizner - a guy that's actually won a statewide election in this broken down state of ours. He's actually one of the few people in Sacramento that knows his *** from a hole in the ground.

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Posted by Bruce
a resident of Crescent Park
on May 29, 2009 at 3:59 pm

I don't know very much about Whitman, except that she seems intelligent and was the CEO of EBay.

My bewilderment is that we have had so many people from the business community with Conservative support take office and make a total mess of things. Look at the last 8 years with Bush and Cheney, both gung-ho with private industry, both high-powered businesspeople, Bush a two-time CEO, and they made a total mess of the country on multiple fronts. Arnold has not done anything for CA and still cannot say the name of the state right.

Look at Berlisconi in Italy, or the big shots that have taken power around the world, Thailand for instance. Why is it that these people mostly seem to botch things up? I cannot think of an opposing example where a business expert went into politics and actually set things right, even though many have claimed they did ... sort of like Bush claimed a "Texas Miracle".

Just an interesting contradiction in the pro-business anti-government point of view that Republicans take. Why is this? Could it be they are used to operating in the tyrannical hierarchy of the corporate world. Could it be that if we put too many of these CEO types in office they will be making executive power grabs like Bush in order to not be responsible to the people for what they have done?

Until I get some specifics about Whitman I am really not enamored of another CEo superstar thinking they have all the answers to the country's ills.

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Posted by OhlonePar
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on May 29, 2009 at 5:28 pm

Whitman didn't leave eBay in great shape, so high-powered CEO, yes, superstar? No.

Bruce, I've noticed the problem myself. I think it has to do with the difference between what's needed to manage the private and public sectors. Corporations essentially work as dictatorships--underlings do what they're told or they're out. Schwarzenegger can't fire state legislators. He can't just tell them what to do.

It's really a different set of skills.

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Posted by A Boomer
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 7:09 pm

I had some limited work dealings with Meg some years ago when she was at the SF Office of the management consulting firm Bain and Company, and my employer was its client. She is an impressive person, extremely personable, but a tough and laser like mind.

Mitt Romney hired Meg into Bain, and she was in his camp during last year's campaign until he dropped out, and then she subsequently got involved in the McCain campaign. I have no doubt that she knocked McCain's socks off, she is a very capable person.

Romney generally got good marks for his time as governor of Massachusetts, which also is a difficult state to run. I suspect Meg is looking at Romney's experience as she weighs her options.

Meg's experience in very high level management consulting gave her gigs where dysfunctional organizations needed to be significantly transformed, and Bain is very good at helping with that. She had leadership experience prior to EBay and after Bain, so there is a track record.

So, I admire Meg, but I am not sure that she is the best choice for governor at this point. On the other hand, I don't know who else is a better choice. Poizner is also a good person, I think Meg is actually a stronger resume to Steve's. Tom Campbell is someone with both private and public sector policy experience.

I am a Democrat, but I actually think the talent pool for the Governor's office after the failed Arnold is stronger on the GOP side. Jerry Brown, again? LA Mayor? SF Mayor? I am disappointed.

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Posted by WilliamR
a resident of Fairmeadow
on May 29, 2009 at 8:41 pm

'A Boomer' - Thanks for the background on Meg Whitman. I agree that the Democratic array so far of Brown, Newsom and Villaraigosa is disappointing. I've always felt that a governor of California should have some experience at the state government level--the dynamics just aren't the same as running a business--but I don't want a 'lifetime politician' either. I'm leaning toward Poizner now. Lieutenant Governor might be a better slot for Whitman--there would probably be a lot of opportunities for her to promote her ideas and use her management skills in reforming the state government there. At the same time, I'm put off by her inability/unwillingness to present any specifics regarding our current crises.

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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 7:50 am

I doubt Meg Whitman or Steve Poizner or any of the other candidates will have much of an impact. The California government is so dysfunctional now that unless propositions which imposed 2/3 majority for budgets and tax/fee increases are repealed, none of these candidates is going to get much done. These candidates need to address governance and the tax base instead of pandering to the parties.

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Posted by PointOfView
a resident of Midtown
on May 30, 2009 at 8:24 am

We already have too much state spending; it's human nature to freely spend other people's money. Our state starts programs and grows them and never shrinks them. If we repeal the 2/3 majority requirement for budgets and taxes, our state government will simply spend more and more.

While that may be good temporarily for state employees and programs funded by the state, the increased taxes will have a negative influence on the growth by private industry necessary to fund that spending.

In my opinion, the state tries too often to use its money directly to address whatever problems and opportunities it finds, rather than use its money to stimulate economic and other activity.

It's the same concept in the old "giving a fish everyday, or teach someone to fish." The state seems comfortable giving fish everyday.

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Posted by OhlonePar
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on May 30, 2009 at 12:18 pm

It's not simply state spending. The structure of our state government doesn't work.

We need to overhaul the proposition process--it's been way out-of-control and we've ended up with some terrible laws on the books. We should keep the propositions, but put in a sunset clause. Then if the proposition is working, we can vote it through again, if not, we can revert. We're really saddled with a bunch of half-baked laws that restrict flexibility.

We also need to give up the two-thirds budget approval--combined with gerrymandering, we have a budget crisis every single year. We have extremists in both parties holding the state in a financial stranglehold.

If we had a halfway functional system, many people, including Whitman, would probably do a reasonable job as governor. but with the systemic issues being so large, I can't think of anyone who could handle it.

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Posted by Gary
a resident of Downtown North
on May 30, 2009 at 12:46 pm


Actually, it IS about spending, however the votes are gotten. Reducing the 2/3 mandate would only open the state up to more and more taxation and spending. It is not the "extremist" Republicans that are causing fact, they are inhibiting this.

California could decide to actually grow the economic pie (e.g. nuclear power, removing overly burdensome regulations and taxes, etc.), but it won't happen while the lefties control the political power structure.

Fundamentally, California is being governed by cash flow (not the budget). That is a bottom line that all sides are forced to live with, because, unlike the federal government, California cannot print money.

I like your idea about sunsetting the propositions, unless, like Prop 8, they become part of the state constituion. I am a big supporter of prop 13, but I would be quite willing to have it ratifield every 10 years. I think the crazy notion of 20 kids/classroom k-3, would be easily reversed in this climate. There are many other examples....

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Posted by PointOfView
a resident of Midtown
on May 30, 2009 at 8:40 pm

I agree the initiative system is far from perfect, but it's really the only bound on the worse things that come out, or don't come out, from our state legislature.

A sunset sounds good to me, but I would personally prefer something longer than 10 years.

Another problem with initiatives is conflicting, confusing, diluting, illegal, and/or mis-described propositions on the ballot.

I can still recall scratching my head over the Indian gambling propositions awhile back.

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Posted by OhlonePar
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on May 30, 2009 at 9:31 pm

Ah, but Gary, are you willing to admit that some of the unreasonable spending is the result of the ridiculous Three Strikes laws? We spend an obscene amount on our prisons. I don't see the point of locking up nonviolent offenders for life.


I think the initiative system has valuable things about it, but it's led to numerous bad laws and is one of the reasons our legislature no longer functions. Term limits, for example, sounded great on the ballot, but ended up giving us extremists with no reason to compromise and actually give us a budget. The two-thirds budget vote effectively means the minority having a stranglehold on the majority.

I mention a sunset clause because other states with the initiative process have them and they have more functional governments.

We should get back to a system where we elect reasonable legislators and rely less on half-understood propositions.

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Posted by Gary
a resident of Downtown North
on May 31, 2009 at 7:39 am

"Ah, but Gary, are you willing to admit that some of the unreasonable spending is the result of the ridiculous Three Strikes laws? We spend an obscene amount on our prisons. I don't see the point of locking up nonviolent offenders for life."

The Three Stikes law was passed during a time of a high rate of violent crime. Most violent crimes come from repeat offenders...thus the rationale to lock 'em up and throw away the key. The violent crime rate has dropped substantially since Three Strikes went into effect. My view is that Three Strikes was and is responsible for saving many innocent lives. I do think that at least one of the strikes should be required to be a violent felony, before Three Strikes is applied. It does cost a lot of money, but probably not an obscene amount, considering its effectiveness. I think the prison budget is about 10% of the overall that too much for public safety?

I would be for allowing another vote on Three Strikes, as I would on any proposition (sunsetting).

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Posted by Perspective
a resident of Midtown
on May 31, 2009 at 11:19 am must be kidding, right? You still really believe that CONSERVATIVE economic business policies are what brought about ours and the worldwide economic meltdown?

You really don't understand that what brought us down was that our Republican leaders didn't have the fajitas to stand up to the match lit by Community Reinvestment Act abuses by Frank, Dodd, Fannie Mae, ACORN?

The Repubs are at fault because they didn't have the spine to cry the "emperor has no clothes" about the ridiculous enactments of the CRA because the "people of color" and the Franks, Dodds and Raineys cried "racism" whenever anyone even tried to blow the whistle, since virtually all the recipients of houses they couldn't pay for were "of color".

The Repubs are at fault for failing to stand up for conservative ecomonic principles, by spending as much as they took in, in order to be "liked' by the press and the left ( see where that got them?) ..doubling Fed spending on education, throwing $400,000 PER PERSON at Katrina "victims" ( those who failed to listen to directions) trying to stop being called "racists", doubling the Medicare budget, failing to simply go in and TAKE OVER IRAQ fully, in order to keep a "small footprint" and please the left and the media ( that worked out well for them, didn't it? So we went in with the surge and THAT worked..).

What you saw was a failure of Repubs to stick to their basic principles. They confused "reachign across the aisle" to "walking across the aisle" with almost no pulling of the "other side" toward the middle ( Obama is not making this mistake, I note..there is no reaching at we will have no doubt whose policies to blame now, will we?).

They still aren't standing up, they are still cowering in the corner, and are continuing to decline. Those who stand for nothing, will fall for anything.

Many of us have even stopped calling ourselves Repub because the Repubs have stopped standing for limited govt and personal responsibility. We are now libertarians.

Try to think this through a bit..if Dems had run the entire country these last 8 years, ( instead of basically running it the last 2 years, when things started going south economically here), what do you think would have been the economic recovery after the Clinton recession? After 9/11? What would have been the response to AFghanistan and Iraq's 17 ignored resolutions and kicking out the inspectors? How much worse would the last 8 years have been?

Well, be sure to find the conservatives to blame in 3 1/2 years when our economics, and the world's, has not recovered at all, ( and, frankly, when I believe we will be trying to recover from another attack on Americans). There are no conservative leaders standing up now, all that is left are Democrat-Lites, like little puppy dogs, begging for approval, appeasing the media and the left, STILL screwing up because they are afraid of "what people will think"..that "racist" label is QUITE effective. Saul Alinsky was brilliant, gotta give him that. Sort of like Marx really understanding the sheep-like nature of people, Alinsky really undrstood the nature of good folks recoiling from being personally attacked.

Back to economics..we are in a holding pattern at this point, awaiting the pending inflation, increasing unemployment, and lowering revenue in our Fed and State coffers. Because, ya know, those liberal policies are so good for us.

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Posted by Paul
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 1, 2009 at 1:33 pm

"Be great to have a competent businesswoman as Gov"

Sure will. Why not recall the incumbent clown and put one in now?

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