[California] Controller John Chiang announced today he has blocked pay for lawmakers, rejecting his own party’s spending plan as insufficient to satisfy a voter-approved law on timely budgets.
Good. Maybe the reality of no pay will force California legislators off their dead asses and get them to take genuine action on the budget. Democrats passed a garbage budget recently which was quickly vetoed by Democratic governor Jerry Brown. It was unquestionably passed simply so they could get paid even though they knew it wasn’t balanced. Now the Controller, who is also a Democrat, has called their bluff. It’s important to note that legislator pay is forfeited not just suspended until a balanced budget passes.
The bulk of California legislators are not independently wealthy so this puts real pressure on them. Good. Unsurprisingly, Democratic lawmakers are whining about how dreadfully unfair it all is. Imagine, the bad ole Controller is making them heed the Constitution. Oh the horror. Republicans, who generally favor a balanced budget anyway, can’t do much except soldier on and try to get it passed ASAP.