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Denham recall nothing but a disingenuous Democratic Party ploy
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If you've signed a petition to have state Senator Jeff Denham's name placed on the ballot for a recall, chances are you did so under pressure outside a market or post office, not because you understand the issue.

Democrats in Sacramento have sunk to new lows as they foist a ridiculous and disingenuous attempt to get the conservative Republican out of the Senate.

The recall tool was intended to be used by the people for public officials guilty of malfeasance. That's a term meaning, "wrongdoing or misconduct," or crimes. It was never intended for partisan bullies who want to remove an opposition party member merely because of the way he votes.

Let there be no mistake: Democrats are leading and bankrolling this effort and the public should not participate in their partisan dirty tricks. The recall effort is being bankrolled by a Sacramento-based Voter Education and Registration Fund, which sounds like a noble organization on the surface. But it's tied directly to Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata. It's spokesman is Paul Hefner, who is a spokesman for Perata, the man who exacted revenge on Denham for his no vote for a state budget.

Democratic leadership has been nipping on Denham's heels since the summer over Denham's vote on the state budget. Denham was removed from the Government Organization committee by Perata in an attempt to pressure him to vote for an unbalanced bill. Denham replied, "If you want me to vote for a budget, make it balanced and don't repeal the teacher's tax credit, for starters."

Denham didn't buckle and held to his principles that the 2007-08 state needed a balanced budget. The budget eventually passed without Denham's support. Denham stood his ground that $700 million of red-ink spending needed to be slashed from the $145 billion budget.

Hefner gives a flimsy justification for a recall, saying Denham "stands out as somebody who campaigned as one thing and is running around now entirely different." He notes that Denham cast the lone vote against a flood control bond. Denham opposed it because it didn't give enough money to valley projects.

Need we remind this conservative district that Denham has kept his promises to his voters?

Denham has fought tirelessly for cutting government waste and spending, and reducing the regulatory burden on businesses. In 2003 he called for the state to sell off unnecessary surplus properties as a way of get the state out of its sea of red ink. He's also introduced and supported bills to get tough on criminals, such as SB 882 which called for provide more jail time to those convicted of using the internet to lure minors. When the state was facing huge budget deficits, Denham took the high moral ground and volunteered for a pay cut of 5 percent, or $4,950 per year from a salary of $99,000.

His 2003 voting record won him an "A" grade from the California Taxpayers' Association

Fluent in Spanish, Denham has been highly visible throughout his district. He's been to Ceres more times than we can count, including the Education Summit he held at Central Valley High School in Ceres on Sept. 25.

Doesn't sound like a man who is guilty of malfeasance.

No, this is all about Democratic Party strategy. Let's be honest. Getting Denham out of the way means less trouble for Democrats to get away with their business of raising taxes and promoting their liberally social agenda. Denham's significance in the Senate is that he gives Republicans a 15th vote, enough to block legislation that requires a two-thirds majority.

Denham was elected to the Senate in November 2002 after campaigning on his military service, successful business and conservative values. It was a remarkable performance given that his Democratic opponent, Rusty Areias, was well-known and more experienced. He was overwhelmingly re-elected last November in a 59.5 percent to 40.5 percent outcome over Democrat Wiley Nickel.

Denham has been widely respected as a man of honor and integrity in his 12th Senate district, which covers Ceres and goes all the way over to the Salinas Valley communities of Hollister, Salinas, Soledad and King City.

Could it be, too, that Democrats are also concerned about well-liked Denham being successful in his bid to become lieutenant governor in 2010 after he cannot run again for the Senate?

Educate yourself about the issue before you offer to help Perata to gather his target of 31,084 signatures before Feb. 13. Think what kind of government you can expect to get when you allow a vindictive party leader like Perata to trick voters into removing a conscionable and resolute legislators like Denham. If he succeeds, the stench in the Legislature will grow too rancid for honorable people to serve.