Arnold’s day…

We hear that now that the prison issue has come to some resolution, the Governor is re-focusing on health care reform.

John Myers at KQED Capitol Notes suggests his day today has a significant health care theme:

Fly On The Wall: Most political reporters would love to be at two unusual events today on Governor Schwarzenegger’s schedule… both of which are private meetings.

This afternoon, the guv is speaking to a meeting of the California Restaurant Association and, we’re told, taking questions from those in attendance. The topic: Schwarzenegger’s health care reform ideas. That’s a proposal about which the restaurant industry has been quite vocal about its unhappiness, especially on the governor’s call for new health care mandates on employers.

Let’s remember that it was the fast-food and chain restaurants (McDonald’s, Yum Brands, Outback Steakhouse, etc.) that were the bulk of the opposition to Proposition 72, raising around 70% of the funds against that proposal.

But also check out the other item on the Gov’s agenda:

Later this afternoon, the governor is scheduled to meet here in Sacramento with GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney. While the two have spoken on the phone before, the governor’s aides say this is their first face-to-face chat. Romney has been working hard in recent weeks to plant his flag on the conservative side of the GOP universe for the coming primary… a place that Schwarzenegger seems to have taken off his political map. By the way, Schwarzenegger is also scheduled to attend Thursday afternoon’s GOP presidential debate at the Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley.

Gov. Mitt Romney was supposed to be at Gov. Schwarzenegger’s “Health Care Summit” last year to present the plan he signed (and partially vetoed). He couldn’t make it, and he sent his Secretary of Health (who I sat next to). You would imagine health reform would be a big discussion point for their first meeting. But since then, Gov. Romney has been suspiciously quiet about health reform in his home state during his presidential campaign.

He doesn’t want to own the individual mandate, nor the costs of the private market plans, nor other elements he insisted on. Yet he also doesn’t want to highlight what many would consider the good aspects of the Massachusetts plan, including more than a 100,000 people getting coverage–through the expansion of public programs.

Maybe they will talk about the weather.

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