GOP Siding With Unions

Steven Greenhut: Once again the Republican Party of California has proven that it loves big government, is perfectly comfortable with public employee unions (provided they are law enforcement unions) and has absolutely no interest in limiting the size and power of government. Only one Republican, Chris Norby of Fullerton, voted for AB1017, which would simply reduce the penalties for growing marijuana. Per the analysis of the bill:  “Existing law requires that every person who plants, cultivates, harvests, dries, or processes any marijuana, or any part thereof, except as otherwise provided by law, be punished by imprisonment in the state prison. This bill would make that crime punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for a period of not more than one year or by imprisonment in the state prison. By changing the penalty for this crime to authorize imprisonment in a county jail, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.”

There is still time for one more Republican or Democrat to do the right thing — something that makes enormous sense given the recent U.S. Supreme Court’s decision mandating the reduction in the state’s prison population. Norby says its a combination of “reefer madness” on the Republican side with union support on the Democratic side. Dems don’t want to support reduced sentences because the prison guards and police unions — which want more business, after all — are against this sensible rule.

The GOP and pro-union Democrats are saying that they would rather release violent felons into the population to meet the court’s order than to reduce harsh penalties for pot growers. Remember this when both sides start the scare tactics over prison release.



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  1. John Seiler
    John Seiler 1 June, 2011, 20:19

    I wonder how many Republicans who voted Nay ever smoked dope.

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  2. Tylerle13
    Tylerle13 2 June, 2011, 09:44

    The Teamsters already started Unionizing Pot Farmers in California last year, so you will see a lot more political pressure from the Unions to legalize or decriminalize it in the near future. Teamsters wont be able to collect dues if their members keep getting locked up.

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