10.01.2008 0

There He Goes Again!

  • On: 10/07/2008 12:57:16
  • In: First Amendment
  • California Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez (already familiar to ALG Daily Feed readers) has yet again attempted to overturn the will of California’s voters, by attempting to confuse them with yet another legislative “reform” package. One element is strikingly similar to that proposed by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. But whereas the governor’s plan focuses on the redistricting process (moving control of it from the elected legislature to an appointed panel), Nunez’s “reform” plan goes even further:

    • Prohibit campaign contributions to the governor and legislators from the time the state budget is introduced until it is passed
    • Reallocate redistricting control from the legislature to a bipartisan panel
    • Decrease the term limit years from 14 to 12, but allow them to all be served in one house of the legislature.

    Critics of Nunez’s plan are pointing out that his redistricting measure is not only unnecessary (as per the governor’s already approved proposal), but is also misleading (with a potential to confuse voters on the two initiatives).

    Prohibiting contributions during budget deliberations will not prevent those donations from being made at a later date. Nor will it prevent lawmakers from taking calls from potential donors during that time. Enough with the nudging and winking.

    Finally, by amending the current term limits law, he would be defying the clear will of California voters, who – just three months ago – saw through misleading information and $16 million in advertising to reject a similar term-limits increase.

    In brief, this bill is pointless. Redistricting? That is already taken care of by the governor’s proposal. Prohibiting campaign contributions during budget deliberations? Does he think that will stop lobbyists and special interest groups from merely “promising” contributions to be delivered as soon as the budget is passed? No, the bulk of his proposition serves only one purpose: to allow his political cronies to maintain their grasping, greedy hold on office.

    Nunez defends his request for more time in office, claiming that, as a politician, he likes to “come back and figure out how to do things.” Which, of course, may well be why the good people of California term-limited him out in the first place!

    ALG Perspective: It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what this measure is after – increasing power to those who already have it (and don’t want to lose it). Nunez’s excuses are as pointless as those of a child, hand caught in the cookie jar, claiming he was only “counting them.” It is a power grab, plain and simple.

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