California Democrats replace 'spend' with 'invest'

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — As billions of dollars in unexpected tax revenue pour into California, Democratic lawmakers have proposed all kinds of ways to distribute the windfall after years of recession-era budget cuts.

Just don't call it spending.

In recent weeks, Democrats have been using the word "investment" as a more palatable and fiscally responsible term to characterize their individual priorities.

Democratic lawmakers are framing their spending proposals for welfare, health care, child care, education and preschool for low-income families as a human investment.

Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, says whether Gov. Jerry Brown buys it is another matter.

Spending or saving is the main point of contention between Brown and Democrats as lawmakers face a Sunday deadline to send the governor a balanced budget.