The two-thirds super-majority held by Democrats in Sacramento has allowed them to pass the largest gasoline tax increase in state history. This huge tax and fee increase has proven to be extremely unpopular. Recent polls suggest that 58% of registered voters disapprove. In fact, 72% of the Inland Empire, which is part of my district, oppose it.
Efforts are now underway to eliminate the Democrat two-thirds super-majority by recalling one senator from office. Another petition gathering effort is also underway to repeal the tax. By eliminating the super-majority, future tax increases, including proposals to weaken Proposition 13, would be difficult.
Recall elections have been an integral part of the California political process since their inception in 1911. Even when Governor Gray Davis was recalled in 2003, no serious attempt was made to tinker with the historic right of Californians to recall elected officials. Now however, the majority party facing backlash against their tax increase has devised a backdoor scheme to undermine this basic right of the people.
Senate Bill 96, a budget trailer bill, has been pushed through at breakneck speed to add bureaucratic hurdles and delays to the recall process. These delays include replacing the required random sample of signatures with a full count, and requiring a Department of Finance analysis of the costs of a special election.
These hurdles would effectively delay any recall effort for months, weakening the entire recall process. The bill’s provisions would be retroactive, so that the current recall already approved by the Secretary of State under existing law, would be pushed out to the June, 2018 primary.
Passing a budget is a constitutional requirement that should not be used as a political tool to protect the balance of power in Sacramento.
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Assemblymember Marie Waldron, R-Escondido, represents the 75th Assembly District in the California Legislature, which includes the communities of Bonsall, Escondido, Fallbrook, Hidden Meadows, Palomar Mountain, Pauma Valley, Rainbow, San Marcos, Temecula, Valley Center and Vista.