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As a candidate for Governor, Jerry Brown promised "an honest budget without the smoke and mirrors." Now the legislature is sending him a spending plan "with more smoke than a Texas barbecue and enough mirrors to fill a carnival funhouse," according to one reporter. There are massive cuts in higher education, the courts and other services, fees on Internet sales and motor vehicles, and it could mean the death of redevelopment agencies. By meeting tonight's deadline, Senators and Assembly members will get paid, but they've produced a measure Governor Brown might refuse to sign. On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, Libya, Syria and the future of NATO.

Main Topic The Democrats' Budget, a Budget Nobody Wants 26 MIN, 31 SEC

Late today -- for the first time in decades -- the state legislature late was on its way to passing a spending plan by the Constitutional deadline, which expires at midnight tonight.  That means Senators and Assembly members won't get their pay cut. But Republicans are unhappy because they had no role in the process. Democrats are unhappy, even though the measure passed with all their votes. Governor Brown will have 12 days to sign it or try to work out something better.

John Myers, Los Angeles Times (@johnmyers)
Tani Cantil-Sakauye, California Supreme Court
Mark DiCamillo, Field Poll (@markdicamillo)
Bill Bradley, New West Notes
Mike Spence, West Covina City Councilman (@Mike_Spence)
Nathan Brostrom, University of California

Main Topic Syria, Libya and the Future of NATO 26 MIN, 2 SEC

Syria, Libya and the Future of NATOSyria is conducting bloody repression of its own people without interference. Some 8500 Syrians have fled across the border into Turkey and thousands more may be making their way on trucks, tractors and on foot, without access to shelter or food.  In Libya, Moammar Gadhafi is hanging on longer than expected. Is NATO prepared to protect civilians for humanitarian reasons? What's the future of the Atlantic Alliance?


Segment image: Syrian refugees gather on June 15, 2011 during Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's visit to the Turkish Red Crescent camp, two kilometers from the Syrian border. Photo: Mustafa Ozer/AFP/Getty Images

Anthony Shadid, New York Times (@anthonyshadid)
Robin Yassin-Kassab, Qunfuz.com (@Qunfuz1)
Blake Hounshell, Foreign Policy magazine (@blakehounshell)
Stephen Szabo, German Marshall Fund

The Road from Damascus

Robin Yassin-Kassab

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