Conservative Hypocrite Dennis Hollingsworth Ousts Senate Minority Leader
California State Senator Dennis Hollingsworth, a Republican from right here in Riverside County, the City of Murrieta to be precise, has been selected leader of the Republicans in the California State Senate.
Dennis Hollingsworth successfully led a coup against the Senate Minority Leader, Republican Dave Cogdill of Modesto. Cogdill was overthrown by his own party for embracing a budget deal that will raise taxes on income, sales, gasoline, and vehicle registration. Senator Cogdill helped broker this bad deal last week as a member of the State's Wee Five (the Governor, Assembly Speaker, Senate President, plus the Assembly and Senate Minority Leaders).
Senator Cogdill apparently misread his Republican colleagues on the issue of taxation. But can you blame Cogdill? After all, the Republican Party has abandoned nearly all of its core principles at one point or another in the last decade.
Senator Cogdill must've figured his party would give him a pass for agreeing to a soak the rich, poor, and middle class tax increase. He probably thought many of them would vote with him just to get the budget done and keep the State of California in business. Guess again.
Late last night Republicans in the State Senate voted to remove Senator Dave Cogdill and replace him with our own Senator Dennis Hollingsworth. But don't break out the party favors just yet, dear readers. Hollingsworth is a mixed bag, not only for our county, for the state, but also his own party.
Senator Hollingsworth is one of the most conservative members of the entire State Legislature, if not the most conservative. Hollingsworth probably has more votes against legislation than any other legislator, while also being a leader in getting the least amount of legislation passed and signed into law. For six years Dennis Hollingsworth has just taken up space and fed at the taxpayer troth with practically nothing to show for it but his frequent flyer miles.
On the positive side, having a committed anti-tax Republican now as part of the State's Wee Five may be good in the short term. If Hollingsworth can hold Republicans in line, he might be able to scale back and possibly prevent the economically devastating tax increases Governor Schwarzennegger and Democratic legislative leaders badly want.
However, Hollingsworth does not have an alternative plan. Like most Republicans, Hollingsworth only knows how to show up and vote no. It's the real problem in this whole budget mess. Republicans need to put up a very real and a very detailed plan that balances the State budget without any, or only with extremely limited, tax increases.
Given that state government under the horrible leadership of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has grown 40%, there are plenty of places for the Republicans to cut. It won't make the Democrats happy. But guess what? At least with two competing plans on the table real work and real budget compromise can get underway.
On the negative side, Dennis Hollingsworth is bad for his party in the long term. He is not the kind of Republican that will be able to attract moderate, independent, and Hispanic voters to the GOP that the party desperately needs to expand its numbers and win election's in California. That will keep California a one party state and continue to lead to state government that has no purpose other than existing.
Dennis Hollingsworth is also a hard-core fire-breathing Christian conservative that can not agree or collaborate with anyone that does not see the world exactly as he does. Now Hollingsworth and his followers will probably read the above as a compliment, while progressives and liberals will dismiss it since believe Hollingsworth is like all Republicans. That is not the case.
Hollingsworth's religious views are to the right of George W. Bush. Yes, you read the right. Hollingsworth's views are further to the right than our recently retired President who was the darling of the Christian right his entire eight years. To understand this clearly, if Dennis Hollingsworth were a Muslim, he would be a member of the Taliban.
Which of course makes Senator Hollingsworth a hypocrite. In his 2000 Assembly election, Hollingsworth was forced to admit a long-standing affair with a woman he worked with at the Riverside County Farm Bureau.
Rumor even has it that Dennis Hollingsworth once filed a false police report when a bike was stolen out of the back of his truck from the driveway of the woman's house. Hollingsworth would have outed himself for his marital infidelity if he called the theft in from her house, so according to our sources he reported the incident and provided the police with false information about where the bike was stolen.
Dennis Hollingsworth asked for forgiveness from the voters for his affair, and they gave it to him. Sadly people like Hollingsworth don't share the same kind of mercy and forgiveness with others that have momentary lapses of judgement or who make mistakes in their lives.
Such things aside, hopefully Senator Hollingsworth will be able to get a state budget done that does not contain many or any tax increases. The State needs to learn to live within its means just like the rest of us dear readers. That will require more than his standard no vote. We are hopeful that as Minority Leader Dennis Hollingsworth will actually start doing the work he is being paid for. If not, then we will all know that he shortened his name to Hollingsworth from Hollingsworthless.