Gov. Jerry Brown said today that he will not use an expected Democratic supermajority in the California Legislature to raise taxes further than were raised by passage of his ballot initiative Tuesday, urging "the prudence of Joseph" on spending in the next few years.
"We have to make sure over the next few years that we pay our bills, we invest in the right programs, but we don't go on any spending binges," the Democratic governor said at a news conference at the Capitol.
Brown said he will be guided by a biblical reference to seven years of plenty being followed by seven years of famine, and to the need in better times to save crops for less abundant years.
"We need the prudence of Joseph going forward over the next seven years, and I intend to make sure that that's the story that we look to for our guidance," Brown said.
Brown is likely to face pressure of liberal allies -- if not Democratic lawmakers -- to increase spending. He suggested today that he will resist such efforts.
"We're cutting, and now we have more revenue, but that revenue will be used prudently and judiciously," he said. "And I don't underestimate the struggle over the next couple years to keep on a very calm, clear and sustainable glide-path."
Brown said he would not rely on a two-thirds majority in the Legislature to raise taxes, saying "the only way to raise a tax is to ask the people."
The success of Brown's victory Tuesday on Proposition 30 makes his re-election prospects for 2014 even more likely than before. He declined to say if he will seek re-election, calling such a decision premature.