Calif. Senator to Sue Schwarzenegger Over Budget Cuts

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 8, 2009 6:24 AM CDT
State Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, stares as Republicans stall the vote on the budget bill in the Senate at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., last month.   (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
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(Newser) – The leader of California's Senate says he'll take Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to court for using line-item vetoes to slash another $500 million from the budget deal he was sent last week, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Democrat Darrell Steinberg accuses Schwarzenegger of overstepping his authority by making the cuts. "We elected a governor, not an emperor," Steinberg says, warning that the balance of power in the state is being upset.

Steinberg says the cuts, which came from social services and health care programs, are illegal and "completely contrary" to the deal the governor hammered out with lawmakers to solve the state's budget crisis. A spokesman for Schwarzenegger said the government had no choice but to make the cuts and predicted the court will rule in the governor's favor.