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Cramming In More Bad Law
Sacarmento liberals trying to squeeze it all in…

[John Campbell] 9/16/05

So much bad legislation was passed in the last two weeks of session in Sacramento that I hardly know where to start. But I will start with the actions (one admirable, one not) of two Democratic Senators and then start listing some of the craziness now on the Governor's desk.

I’ll vote for you: Senator Carole Migden (D-San Francisco) was on the Assembly floor to encourage passage of a bill she had authored. The Assembly votes electronically with each Assembly Member pressing a green button on their desk to indicate an "aye" vote or a red button for "no." Senator Migden's bill was one vote short of passage. So, she proceeded to push the green button for Republican Assemblymember Guy Houston who was not at his desk at the time, thereby ensuring passage of her bill. Except that Assemblymember Houston was against the bill. Another Republican Assemblymember noticed the violation and called out Senator Migden. The bill was later voted on again at which time it passed. But this act by Senator Migden was no different than you going to the voting booth and claiming to be someone else (of the other party) and voting on their behalf. This is really bad. And arrogant. It should not go unpunished.


John Campbell (R-Irvine) is a California State Senator representing the 35th District in Orange County. He represents the cities of Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, Irvine, Costa Mesa, Huntington Beach, Seal Beach and Cypress. He can be reached through his Senate website and through the website for his California Senate campaign. [go to Campbell index]

Don't threaten me: One of the many union-backed bills of the year was AB 761 (Jones) which was sponsored by the nurses union. This bill would require hospitals to use union guidelines for hospital staffing. Why would the nurses union want to do this? Because hospitals will have to hire more people, namely nurses, than they need and would that would result in lots more union members paying dues. Our hospitals are struggling and this would increase their costs and drive more of them to close. When this bill came on the Senate floor, Senator Jackie Speier (D-Hillsborough) stood up and said that she had been threatened by the union and that that was unacceptable and she urged her Democratic colleagues to vote no. Republicans were uniformly against this horrible bill anyway but Senator Speier's speech pulled enough Democrats off the bill that it failed.

The nurses union is probably the most egregious, oppressive and coercive union in California (and that is saying something). But they went farther over the line than usual by apparently threatening Senator Speier if she did not vote for their bill. I don't know, but I would imagine that the threat probably involved money. If it did, whoever issued it might have committed a felony.

Good for Senator Speier. I hope she calls the FBI. The nurses union does not care if every hospital in the state closes and people have no health care, as long as their wages and benefits go up. Those union bosses care less about health care than anyone on the planet. More Democrats should realize this union has crossed the line many many times. And it's got to stop.

SB 610 (Alarcon): This is one of the worst bills of the year. This measure will eliminate the property tax exemption for nonprofit hospitals (like Hoag, CHOC and St. Joseph's) if their revenue in any year exceeds their expenses by more than 10%. It is sponsored by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). They are strongly pushing the measure because many nonprofit hospitals are nonunion and the unions basically wants them out of business. You get the picture. It passed the Senate 21-17 and is on the governor's desk.

AB 1297 (Evans): Would require that school heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems are inspected, maintained and repaired only by persons certified by certain environmental and union organizations. Yeah, schools need to find the highest cost supplier for HVAC. Now that will really help our kids! After bills like this pass, this author will call for tax increases because our schools are inadequately funded......because of her. The bill passed 22-15 and is on the governor's desk.

Governor Schwarzenegger had appointed Joan Borucki to the position of Director of the DMV. She had been in this position for only a couple of months. But in those couple of months, she had failed to issue driver's licenses to illegal aliens. Now, of course, the law says she can't do that. But that is of little concern to Senate Democrats. They rejected her appointment (which is confirmable by the Senate) on a party line vote. They gave all kinds of other official reasons. But the real reason is that she did not support licenses for foreign nationals who are here illegally. I guess that's the new litmus test for Democrats in California. CRO



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