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Denham rips 'partisan press conferences aimed at pressuring votes'

Responding to the Education Coalition campaigning in the Modesto portion of his district Tuesday, Sen. Jeff Denham, one of only two Republicans endorsed by the California Teachers Association in 2006, said he would not bend to "partisan press conferences."

"My goal is to have a balanced budget," Denham said in a statement. "It is not fair to the people of California for their legislators to vote in favor of a budget that only increases the state's debt. A budget like this would force cuts to education next year. And, I do not support that."

Denham's office reports that earlier today Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell called Denham to apologize for the partisan tone of the press event.

Capitol Alert reported about the Ed Coalition press conference here.

Denham also reports he is opposed to suspending the teacher's tax credit "particularly given that part of the budget proposal would also give tax breaks to Hollywood moguls and airline companies."

He listed "several areas of pork that could be cut," including "the Cannery Business Park (Sacramento) replacement furniture for $1 million and the Labor Union Institute at UCLA, which would receive $6 million. Another waste of money is to give the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency $4 million, which spends its time discouraging homeowners from keeping their properties fire safe. The UC Mexico facility in Mexico City should not receive $7 million in this budget. "