Monthly Archives: April 2020

California sued over aid to undocumented migrants

The Los Angeles Times reports that:

The nonprofit Center for American Liberty filed an emergency petition with the California Supreme Court requesting a stay on the governor’s action, arguing state and federal laws bar unemployment benefits to those without legal status and that providing the money to nonprofit groups represents an improper gift of taxpayer funds.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit are Whittier City Councilwoman Jessica Martinez and Ricardo Benitez, an immigrant from El Salvador who is now a U.S. citizen. Both plaintiffs are Republican candidates for the state Assembly. Benitez is running to represent the 39th Assembly District in the San Fernando Valley and Martinez is vying to represent the 57th Assembly District in the southern San Gabriel Valley.

“This is taxpayer money that may only be appropriated by the legislative branch. This is not a slush fund for the governor to spend as he sees fit,” Harmeet K. Dhillon, a San Francisco attorney and chief executive officer for the Center for American Liberty, said in a written statement Thursday. “At a time when law-abiding Californians are crushed by unemployment, housing issues, business closures and massive limitations on our normal lives, Governor Newsom is doing an end-run around the legal guardrails in place.”

The thing that is wrong with this aid is that it is insufficient. The fact is that, if these people are living in distress, we all live in distress.

If they get ill, our beloved “legal citizens and immigrants” will get ill as well.

People live here without legal status because of deficiencies in the immigration system.

Not because of choice.

These far right organizations — who have no sense of empathy, compassion, understanding care, let alone common sense — completely ignore the fact that the corporate capitalist system depends upon these people, who pay taxes, and we need to extend human decency to them and to maintain them during this crisis.

Because we need them!

Did Gavin Newsom make a bad deal for masks with a Chinese company?

Evidently, according to the LA Times, he is refusing to let elected officials learn the details of the deal:

But almost immediately, lawmakers wondered why the Newsom administration wouldn’t allow them to review the contract before asking for the first payment to BYD.

“We would never approve a budget this way,” Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), chairman of the Assembly Budget Committee, said in an interview on April 9, two days after the deal was announced. “The whole reason we don’t do a budget one request at a time is we want to know the big picture.”

Has Gavin Newsom sold out on opposition to fracking?

Has Gavin Newsom made a bad deal for a Chinese company for masks?

That is the question a new commentary in Food and Water Watch asks.

They maintain:

Later that year, Governor Newsom issued a new directive that reworked the moratorium to include a loophole — an external, “independent” approval process for new fracking. This process required third-party review of fracking permits by Lawrence Livermore National Lab. We realized at that moment that Newsom’s commitment to oppose fracking was wavering.

Recently, Newsom directed the Department of Finance to audit the fracking permit process to determine if it needs to be strengthened. Until this audit is complete, we presume the backlog of 282 fracking permits will continue to be approved. We also predict the audit will result in nothing more than another rubber stamp for fracking in California.