End the practice of ghost voting once and for all
When the people go to the polls we only get one vote. The same thing does not apply to the members of the California State Assembly who think the rules don't apply to them and they are entitled to multiple votes.
“Ghost voting” is an occurrence when legislators are absent from their desk however their colleagues vote for them by pressing the vote button on their desk in their absence.
In 2008, legislative leaders promised to end the practice of ghost voting. Recent footage from KPIX shows that promise was an empty political promise.
KCBS obtained recorded footage of the Assembly members violating their own rules. Members were filmed pushing the vote button for members who were not present. Assemblyman Phil Ting of San Francisco was caught casting multiple votes. He stood up to speak in support of a gun control bill. Then right away he rushed back to his desk to vote not only for himself, but also Adam Gray of Modesto and Adrin Nazarian of Van Nuys.
When the Assembly voted on a bill to regulate outdoor advertising. Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez from Los Angeles was away from his seat. But KPIX saw Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer, also from L.A., voting for him.
During the same vote, KPIX saw Assemblyman Anthony Rendon from Los Angeles County reaching back to vote for Burbank Assemblyman Mike Gatto.
Assemblywoman Diane Harkey from San Juan Capistrano was also seen voting for her seatmate, Travis Allen from Huntington Beach. All of this took place in less than a minute.
KPIX 5 saw it happening again and again on dozens of other bills: Democrats and Republicans regularly voting for somebody else.
Section 104 of the Assembly Rules is very clear. "A Member may not operate the voting switch of any other Member, except that a Member presiding at the time of a roll call, who is not the Speaker or the Speaker pro Tempore, may direct another Member on the floor to operate the voting switch of the presiding Member, and any Member so presiding, including the Speaker and the Speaker pro Tempore, may also operate the voting switches at the rostrum of the Speaker and the Speaker pro Tempore, at their direction."
How many bills have become law that would not have passed if this blatently dishonest practice was done away with? Your elected represenitive is not voting for you, his neighbors are voting for themselves! Legislators are sent to Sacramento to vote for their district, not to let some other legislator vote on their behalf.
The legislature needs to outlaw this practice by statute law that requires the expulsion from the legislature of any member caught voting for any other member, no exceptions!
Keep your promises from 2008 and end the practice of ghost voting once and for all. The people are allowed only one vote per person, so are you.
Legislators are sent to Sacramento to vote for their district, not to let some other legislator vote on their behalf.
Any member caught violating the ghost voting rule must be expelled from the assembly.
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