| A few quick updates.
First: Two great sources of Twitter updates. John Myers Capitol Notes here and Anthony Wright of Health Access here.
From the twitter updates I've seen so far, it looks like the Governor is leaning very, very hard on Cogdill, Ashburn and Dave Cox. At this point it looks like Sen. Cox (R-Fair Oaks) is the key vote. Incidentally, Maldanado is doing us no favors. Good thing nobody ran against him last year.
Another interesting tidbit from the Capitol: Asm Chuck DeVore, (R-OC) and Republican candidate for Boxer's Senate seat, attempted a coup on Assembly Minority Leader Mike Villines. It failed.
Update by Robert: DeVore resigned his post as whip in the aftermath of the apparent leadership struggle, thereby taking his ball and going home:
"For these reasons, I believe it is appropriate for me to resign as Chief Republican Whip, effective immediately. I can no longer participate as a leader on a team that is preparing to make a fundamental mistake of colossal proportions. For the sake of California I hope I am wrong - however, I fear I am right and that this tax increase and budget deal will result in more harm to the Golden State than good."
In the Byzantine world of Yacht Party politics this of course is good news for his chances of winning the party's nomination to get pummeled by Barbara Boxer in 2010.
Update by Brian: Per John Myers' tweets it appears Dave Cox is trying to get Prop 10 (tobacco tax) money diverted from children's health care programs. So far, it seems the Democrats are resisting. While we're speaking of kids, the CA Budget Project has a chart (PDF) of how much the deal would cut from K12 funding by district.
Update by Brian 6:30am: Well, it seems the legislators have pulled an all-nighter, as the Senate continues to be one vote short. John Myers has been a real sport and tweeted throughout. Sen. Cox announced at about 1am that he was a no on the budget, despite the changes to Prop 10 that were done only to please him. On another note, apparently when the Assembly went into lockdown, they really went into lockdown, Assembly sergeants-at-arms at the doors and everything. Over in the Senate, they dimmed the lights.
This process has been a disaster. The worst of everything that we've been going through for months, even years, with the Republicans. This is a fancy stick-up, with a patina of legitimacy. Who knows if a deal will be reached, but at this point there can be no question from the High Broderists who caused this. Every newspaper, every television station, every radio station should do what the Media News group did and call out the Republicans for their stickup of the state.
Their sheer cowardice to face down their own interest groups is remarkable. It is truly a sad day when a group of elected leaders, when faced with a clear policy decision between what is good for the state and what is good for the politician, have decided that they choose themselves. They have willingly played along with the anti-tax rigid ideology, and their capacity to actually lead on their own has withered away.
What happens from here is anybody's guess. Maybe they get the additional vote, maybe they don't. Perhaps, Arnold will be willing to sign the majority budget agreement that the Democrats passed back in December now, because lord knows we cannot simply do nothing. Arnold wanted to play brinksman, well here it is. We are standing at the precipice, does he want to jump?
Update by Brian: Quick thought - how big is that LA Board of Supes victory by former Sen. Mark Ridley-Thomas. If he were still in the Senate, rather than the seat being vacant until March, the deal would have gone through by now. You have to wonder whether maybe labor wishes they hadn't worked quite so hard to help him defeat Bernard Parks...