Governor on 'This Week'

February 22, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
Arnold Schwarzenegger and other state governors will meet Monday with President Obama to discuss aspects of federal help offered through the new stimulus package.California's Governor said he is anxious for this help and predicted it will help the state recover from what he called a "Fiscal Armageddon."

On 'This Week' with George Stephanopoulos Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger spoke honestly about the state's $42 billion deficit, cutting the budget and increasing revenue, specifically through a new car tax increase---something Schwarzenegger vowed not to do upon election in 2003.

"In this particular case in order to solve for a 42 billion dollar deficit, the only way you can do that is by a combination of making severe cuts and also some revenue increases," Schwarzenegger said.

Schwarzenegger and other fellow governors are in Washington D.C. to discuss the benefits of the President's new stimulus package.

Already several Republican governors like Louisiana's Bobby Jindal and South Carolina's Mark Sanford plan to turn down a portion of unemployment money because they believe it could end up increasing taxes in the long run.

Schwarzenegger said if those governors don't want the money then he will gladly take their cut. "A lot of my colleagues look at this differently. I look at this in a more optimistic way and I feel very strongly that I think President Obama right now needs team players."

Some valley residents support the governors plan to get on board with President Obama.

Joyce Pratt from Clovis said: "I think we ought to give him a chance with his programs and see how that works."

But some believe Schwarzenegger is walking a fine line accepting federal dollars.

"They don't want the federal government telling them how to run the state government," said Fresno's Dwayne Keyes.

Some financial experts claim California's billion dollar deficit, sky rocketing foreclosure rates and overall unemployment numbers are a warning to all other states.

But Sunday morning Schwarzenegger promised he would turn these problems around.

"I am a reformist. I want to go in there and fix what is broken in California and I will be relentless with that and never ever give up," said the Governor.

The governor's financial team believes it will take another 2-3 years before a positive change is noticed.

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