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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Katy Grimes

What’s It Going To Take For Voters To Hold Corrupt Democrat Politicians Accountable?

Hillary “Scandal” Clinton’s latest dust up with the law, no matter how egregious or illegal, will not cause her mind-numbingly stupid followers to disavow her. If she were a Republican, she’d be tossed to the curb like a snotty Kleenex.

We normal folks, the real people who work for a living and pay our own bills, keep asking ourselves “what’s it going to take?” Which scandal will take Hillary and Bill down? When will Barack Obama and his Executive Pen have gone too far? And what America-loathing racist statement will finally earn Michelle Obama the middle finger from Democrats?

These political freeloaders, and the many more like them, hide behind a façade of “public service.” However, they really are elitist Marxists, enjoying a lifestyle paid for by the public.

Badly Behaving Politicians

This sick fascination with badly behaving politicians is not limited to the Clintons and Obamas. Remember William Jefferson, the Louisiana congressman under investigation for bribery when the FBI found $90,000 in cash stashed in his freezer? He was reelected.

How about former New York Attorney General and Governor Eliot… Read More

Katy Grimes

Assembly Dems Kill Important Transparency Bill

They’ve done it again — Democrats in the California Legislature killed another good bill. While this may not seem newsworthy, the way they did the killing is.

For the third time since she has been in the Legislature, Assembly Minority Leader Kristen Olsen, R-Modesto, authored a bill to require all legislation to be in print and available to the public for at least 72 hours before a vote.

Rather than debating Assembly Constitutional Amendment 1, and then voting on it, Assembly Democrats in the Assembly Budget Committee sent the bill to the “suspense file,” following a brief speech from one lawmaker about the importance of transparency. This is underhanded and the epitome of hypocrisy; the bill was effectively killed without an up-or-down vote of the committee members.

“Apparently they are embarrassed to take a stand,” Olsen said. “They’d rather have the bill disappear.”

“‘Transparency’ is probably the most overused word in political speech, while at the same time, the most underutilized… Read More

Katy Grimes

Labor Kills Bill To Help Farm Workers

Labor unions are still running the show in the Democratically-controlled California Legislature. Despite hearing from more than 50 farmworkers on Wednesday, the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee denied the farmworkers the right to vote on their own labor negotiated contacts, even though this right is enjoyed by other union members in California.

Assemblyman Jim Patterson and Assemblywoman Shannon Grove presented ABRead More

Katy Grimes

New Technology Facilitates Transparency, Openness in CA State Govt.

‘Transparency’ is probably the most overused word in political speech, while at the same time, the most underutilized in practice.In a free society, transparency in government means openness, accountability, and honesty. It is the obligation of government to share information with citizens, yet is increasingly difficult to access – even in California, home to Silicon Valley.

Without transparency, citizens are unable to hold public officials accountable. And that’s the problem –government is responsible for making itself available to be accountable. It’s unnatural. While the true statesman values principle above popularity, today’s era of politics in California doesn’t breed an abundance of statesmen.

However, one of the good guys – a real statesman – former State Sen. Sam Blakeslee, has tackled the problem of transparency in politics. The Institute for Advanced Technology and Public Policy, under the leadership of Blakeslee, officially launched the Digital Democracy Project, to provide a searchable database of all legislative hearings. “This package… Read More

Katy Grimes

Farm Employees Want ‘Right-To-Work’ In Union Dominated California

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker recently signed a right-to-work bill into law. This is significant because a“right-to-work” law is a statute that prohibits union security agreements, or agreements between labor unions and employers, that govern the extent to which an established union can require employees’ membership, payment of union dues, or fees as a condition of employment.

In California, Gov. Jerry Brown has ignored thousands of farm workers who don’t want to be unionized. Apparently there is no “right-to-work” in California under this governor.

The significant labor reforms enacted by Walker have struck many important blows against organized labor, effectively ending collective bargaining for Wisconsin public workers. In the four years since these reforms were enacted, the state’s most influential labor unions have been forced to… Read More

Katy Grimes

Gov. Brown Jumps-the-Shark on Climate Change Policy

California Gov. Jerry Brown issued an Executive Order Wednesday for a new target for greenhouse gas emissions cuts. Brown said it was critical to address what he called “an ever-growing threat” posed by global warming to California’s economy and well-being. Brown’s order goes even further than Pres. Obama’s radical proposals, but aligns with the European Union and United Nations proposals. Jerry Brown hasjumped-the-sharkon climate change (Origin of this phrase comes from a Happy Days episode where the Fonz jumped a shark on waterskis. Thus was labeled the lowest point of the show).

Senate Republican Minority Leader Bob Huff correctly replied to Brown’s latest edict:

“The state already has the nation’s most stringent goals. Before moving the goal post, we should be careful about the impact of increased energy costs. These higher costs will hurt the low income and working poor the hardest and will create an even greater divide between the haves and have nots. At what point does being on the leading edge of climate change and… Read More

Katy Grimes

UFW Contracts Pay Less than Minimum Wage

The United Farm Workers unionrecently admitted that their contracts do not provide a living wage. They did it in a room full of people.

I attended the conference UC Davis held April 17 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the the Agricultural Labor Relations Act. I nearly didn’t make it, as the conference was supposedly sold out prior to the deadline. But it quickly became apparent that leaders of the United Farm Workers union manipulated the event registration. The United Farm Workers labor union claimed it was bringing busloads of workers to the event, and reserved the seats. The day of the event, six workers showed up; there were more UFW employees at the conference than actual workers.

These are the tactics used by the desperate UFW, clinging to relevance by a thread. UFW membership is hovering at 3,300 members, according to Philip Martin, UC Davis Professor of Agricultural and Resource… Read More

BOE Member George Runner

Democrats Block Commonsense Legislation to Refund Illegal Taxes

If you pay an illegal tax, you deserve to get your money back. There’s no good reason the state should keep money that rightfully belongs to taxpayers.

The Democrats in the Assembly Revenue and Taxation Committee disagree, and today they again blocked commonsense legislation to protect taxpayers. AB 867 (Wagner), which I sponsored, would have required the State of California to provide a full refund to all individuals who paid a tax later declared illegal or unconstitutional.

Currently, taxpayers are only eligible to receive refunds if they have exhausted all their administrative appeals remedies, even if the tax they paid is later declared illegal or unconstitutional.

AB 867, which was supported by taxpayer advocacy groups, would have required the state to automatically issue refunds to taxpayers whose information is up to date. It also would have opened up an additional appeals period of one year after a state tax is declared illegal or unconstitutional, giving taxpayers a chance to apply for the refunds they deserve.

Assemblyman… Read More

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