The governor appears to have been paddling from both sides with his legislative actions in recent days.
Brown signed several gun control bills but vetoed a handful of others. And while he approved some of labor’s top political priorities, he rejected some union-backed bills as well.
For Republicans like Senator Tom Berryhill, the governor proved to be a “backstop” against the Democratic supermajority. “He could have signed all this stuff, you know? And so, there’s a lot of different bills that we’re not necessarily real happy with, but I’ll tell ya, we could have worse!”
Democratic Assemblyman Ken Cooley says it’s likely that no one will be fully happy with all the governor’s bill actions this year, but “to me, I just think he’s sending a signal that he is not a captive of any particular group; that he’s doing what he thinks serves the long-term interest of the state, and the entire state.”
For the year, Brown vetoed slightly more than 10 percent of the bills to reach his desk. That’s down from the last two years, but well above the tiny veto rates from his first governorship.