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Brown: Healthcare not the place for 'poisonous partisanship'

March 23, 2010 |  5:34 pm

Jerry Brown says he'll take a careful look at whether California should join the 13 attorneys general who are filing lawsuits to stop the sweeping federal healthcare reform plan that was signed into law this week. But you don't have to read very carefully between the lines in the statement Brown released Monday evening to see which way the California attorney general and Democratic gubernatorial candidate is leaning.

Brown says that of the attorneys general filing suit, "all but one are Republican" and that "healthcare is not the place, with people's lives at stake, to engage in poisonous partisanship."

The statement goes on: "At this critical time in our nation's history, we need to come together to forge a common purpose."

Several GOP lawmakers are demanding that Brown join the suit against the federal government, a position supported by Brown's GOP rivals in the governor's race. But the state's top Republican, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, is not joining that chorus. Schwarzenegger spokesman Aaron McLear said the governor is not at this time seeking to involve California in the litigation. "Right now our focus is on working with the administration and the congressional delegation to ensure the state is not saddled with an unfunded mandate," McLear said.

-- Evan Halper in Sacramento

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