Hey Big Spender…

Katy Grimes: Democrat Gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown was on Univision recently and said that when he is elected, he will cut the mansion and private jet from the budget. “To “begin with I would cut back the governor’s expenses, like the private jet, mansion, and things considered luxuries.”

What mansion? Is he talking about the old California Governors Mansion that is now a museum? Or that strange rambling ranch house in Carmichael that was supposed to be used as the Governor’s mansion?

And what jet? The private jet that Governor Schwarzenegger uses is his own, and expenses for it are not charged to the taxpayers, according to the governor’s press spokesman Aaron McLear.

Could Brown be harkening back 30+ years when he was governor, lived in a sparsely furnished bachelor pad and was chauffered in a ratty Plymouth Galaxy?

Whatever he is referring to, this lifelong California resident remembers Brown the last time he was governor — and  I don’t really recall much frugality or thrift in the state during his two terms.

Even with Brown refusing to reside in the California Governors Mansion when he was governor, the state still had to pay for upkeep and maintenance of the old Victorian mansion. He didn’t sell it. And for trivia lovers, the Plymouth Galaxy had a body-double, as I wrote about in Jerry Brown Lore.

But Brown’s state spending is the stuff of legends. A 1992 New York Times story reported, “overall, state spending increased by nearly 120 percent during the Brown years after Proposition 13,” and according to Tim Graham at the Media Research Center, the validity of the statement was verified by FactCheck.org.

Personal frugality does not necessarily translate into statewide economic responsibility.

Remember grandma’s words of wisdom about being penny wise and pound foolish — being cautious with small amounts of money but wasteful with larger amounts, just might sum up Jerry Brown, if history teaches us anything.

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