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Two Assembly Republicans Join Super Majority Dems and Vote for Tax Increase

Capitol sources: Mayes and Cunningham wreaking havoc in minority party

By Katy Grimes, May 24, 2019 11:50 am

Two Assembly Republicans voted Friday with Democrats to put a tax increase across the finish line. The tax-increase bill needed a 2/3 majority vote, or 54 votes, and the votes by Assemblymen Chad Mayes (R-Yucca Valley) and Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo), ensured its passage.

Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham

The bill, Assembly Bill 142 by Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) increases the Manufacturer Battery Fee and makes other changes to the LeadAcid Battery Recycling Act (Act) of 2016. This is a tax.

As The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association notes in its opposition to AB 142, “There are alternative funding mechanisms which may include legitimate regulatory fees under existing constitutional authority. In addition, the necessary funds already exist in California’s $22 billion surplus. Instead, battery manufacturers who may have had little role in contaminating communities are being targeted. The same goes for consumers who live hundreds of miles away from impacted areas. If eighteen sites need mitigation, this is a matter of statewide concern that should be funded out of the General Fund.”

The question is, why did Mayes and Cunningham vote to pass this bill. The other question is why are Republicans Mayes and Cunningham making it a practice to vote with Democrats?

Cunningham was the only Republican who voted Tuesday on anti-charter school bill AB 1505, while Mayes changed his vote so many times, reporters got whiplash. Mayes abstained in the end. Assemblyman Brian Mainschein (D-San Diego), formerly a Republican, also voted to pass the anti-charter school bill AB 1505.

California Globe called Cunningham’s office, which is not answering their phone, and instead allowing calls to go to a recording.

Assemblyman Chad Mayes

The Assembly Republican Caucus is down to 19 members, making it difficult to block bills. With Republican members crossing the aisle to cast votes, many question if Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Los Angeles) holds more than sway over some, as happened with Mayes in 2017.

Then-Assembly Republican Leader Chad Mayes and former Republican Assembly Leader Kristen Olsen, who was Vice Chairwoman of the California Republican Party at the time, had their affair exposed after Olsen’s estranged husband Rod wrote and sent a letter to Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, demanding an investigation into the affair and alleging Assembly resources and tax dollars were used in the affair and cover up of it.

Speaker Rendon knew about the Rod Olsen complaint and did not authorize an ethics investigation into the affair. Then Mayes’ did a 180-degree pivot on a vote for a climate change bill, leading most to believe that the Mayes/Olsen affair likely affected the policy Speaker Rendon and Gov. Jerry Brown wanted passed.

Is this happening again? Or is it pure special interest politics?

More to come…

Katy Grimes

Katy Grimes, the Editor of the California Globe, is a long-time Investigative Journalist covering the California State Capitol, and the co-author of California's War Against Donald Trump: Who Wins? Who Loses?
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6 thoughts on “Two Assembly Republicans Join Super Majority Dems and Vote for Tax Increase

  1. Unbelievable. They don’t even need it, there’s a Super Surplus! I think Cunningham’s charter school vote is especially unforgivable. What the heck is wrong with these people? Guess they think Friday before Memorial Day weekend is safe from exposure. Good thing The Globe is reporting on it.
    1. Are they being blackmailed?
    2. Are they afraid of being moved to the broom closet “office”?
    3. Are they weak soulless jellyfish?
    4. Are they not really Republicans?
    Probably all of the above, but #4 for sure

    1. why did Mayes and Cunningham vote to pass this bill. The other question is why are Republicans Mayes and Cunningham making it a practice to vote with Democrats?
      The simple answer is that both are RINO’s and are actually D’s masquerading as Republicans..

  2. Thank you for shining the spotlight on these cockroaches that go to Sacramento and no one reports on their shady dealings….
    Mayes has demonstrated that he has zero integrity and cannot be trusted, either by his wife or by CA taxpayers and he should be recalled…
    It’s time for Jessica Patterson to start demonstrating the same kind of leadership that you are, Katy, and demanding a higher FIDUCIARY standard of our Republican elected “leaders” and lawmakers…

    It’s time we have a Howard Jarvis Renaissance and tell these fools “ENOUGH!!!” and TAKE BACK CALIFORNIA!!!

  3. We need to get these so called moronic Republican’s we’re in truth “Democrats in Republican’s clothing/seats” out! Let’s recall any Republican supporting Dems initiatives immediately.

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