Commentary: California recall election wasn't worth it

As Arnold Schwarzenegger's gubernatorial tenure winds down, I keep thinking about California's historic recall election almost six years ago, and whether all the uproar was worth the effort.

In the Golden State, we do things in a big way, and the 2003 recall election was classic California. It had a carnival atmosphere and was covered on the late-night talk shows as much as in the mainstream media. So the entertainment value was high.

But are we any better off than we were six years ago? Not even close. The recall election set the stage for a meltdown of California government that has brought us to the point of paying state bills with IOUs and dismantling the social safety net for our poorest residents.

I can't imagine us being worse off if recall voters had thrown up their hands and elected one of the flakier candidates that were on the ballot in 2003.

To read the complete column, visit fresnobee.com.