on March 1, 2011 9:17 AM
Any day now, state Sen. Bill Emmerson will get a stake through his head, figuratively speaking.
Assemblyman Paul Cook is already there. For several days, the Yucca Valley Republican’s mug shot has had a stick through it on the web site of KFI AM’s “John and Ken Show.” Cook also is portrayed underneath a bus driven by the show’s hosts.Cook and Emmerson’s perceived wrongdoing? They were among several Republican lawmakers who did not sign on with the “Taxpayers Caucus.” The new group promises to oppose any measures that would extend higher taxes on a future ballot.
Cook had previously signed a no-tax pledge and felt no need to join another caucus. Late last week, though, he added a new statement to his website, declaring “I won’t vote to raise taxes, and I won’t vote to place tax hikes on the ballot.”
Emmerson, who sits on the Legislature’s budget-writing committee, said he is keeping an open mind. There still is little in the way of actual budget language, he noted.
“I’m going to work and look before making any commitments,” he said. “I just didn’t feel it was necessary to join. My views are well-known.”
Asked if he would support putting any tax-extension measure before voters, Emmerson declined to comment. “I want to see what the fixes are,” he said.
As for his budget priorities, Emmerson said he wants a pension rollback for state workers, a hard spending cap, and an easing of state regulations.
“If we don’t make changes in the way we do business, we’re going to be back here next year,” he said.