Meg Whitman: California's Next Governor?

Jeanne Sager

Meg Whitman

Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Meg Whitman used to be the CEO at the nation's biggest online auction site (you might have heard of it?). But recent poll numbers put her in prime position to be CEO of one of the nation's biggest states.

The Republican billionaire is way out ahead of her closest competitor for the California GOP nod, and she's now taken a 3-point lead ahead of likely Democratic challenger Jerry Brown.

But can the Harvard M.B.A, who took eBay from the unknown to a $40 billion company (at the time of her departure in 2008) turn around a state with one the worst financial crises in the country?

Republicans nationwide seem to think so. During his run for the presidency, Senator John McCain fingered Whitman as his possible head of the treasury (you know, if he'd won and all).

She's going head-to-head with a former governor who also happens to be the son of a former governor. Jerry Brown is known for refusing to take many of the trappings of the office that would have fallen on the shoulders of the taxpayers. In a state that closed all of its superior court offices this week because of the budget shortfalls, that's just the sort of thing that voters want to hear.

But Whitman's financial savvy is holding her steady, and she intends to use it against Brown.

Does the state of the economy make you look deeper into a candidate's fiscal background?

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