Terry Tamminen, influential environmental advisor to California gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, is stepping down.

Ostensibly, Tamminen is quitting to campaign for Arnie and remind voters of the governor’s green record (after which he will take a post in the private sector and publish a book).

Somewhat ironically, though, Tamminen’s departure casts serious doubt on whether a second Arnie term would be as green as the first.

"Terry’s departure leaves a big void in the governor’s office," said Bill Magavern, senior representative for Sierra Club of California. "There now is nobody with experience in the environmental movement, and you have to think that’s going to make a difference when they have their internal tug of war between the business interests and the environmental promises that the governor has made."

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Don’t believe Tamminen made a difference in that tug of war? Listen to this (and remember to use your Corporatist Decoder Ring to translate):

Assemblyman Ray Haynes (R-Murrieta) said that among Republicans in the Legislature, Tamminen won’t be missed. At private Republican caucus meetings, members would complain about reports that Tamminen was pushing for "more regulation and fees."

"He was a Democratic liberal environmentalist who felt it was his job to drive the administration toward bigger government, regulation and more control," Haynes said. "The general perception was he was not pro-California business. He was not perceived as a friend of the Republican caucus in the administration."

See also Grist’s interview with Tamminen.

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