“How Much Does A California Legislator’s Vote Actually Cost?”

[Remarks given today by Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach) in opposition to the $1 billion payout used to secure key votes needed to pass SB 1, the largest gas tax in California history.]

Two weeks ago, Governor Jerry Brown and the California Democrat leadership struck a corrupt bargain with the members of the Legislature to secure their votes for imposing the largest gas tax increase in the history of California. Today, we are presented with a bill of sale, otherwise known as SB 132, which contains a billion dollars in pay-offs in special projects for those legislators’ votes.

Specifically, $100 million to the University of CA, Merced Campus Parkway, $400 million for the ACE Alameda Corridor Express which is tied to the High Speed Rail, and $427.2 million from the State Highway Account for highway and road projects in Riverside County. This is almost a billion dollars in pay-outs to two legislators in the Assembly and two legislators of the Senate.

Today, the people of California get to watch us discuss, in open session, just how much it costs to buy the votes of legislators. Apparently, a billion dollars is the price of legislators in the California Legislature. And the bill before us, SB 132, is simply the invoice of the sale for the votes, payable by the taxpayers of California.

SB 1 was the largest gas tax increase in California history. It is going to cost the people of California over 52 billion dollars over the next ten years. The passage of this 52 billion dollar tax to Californians was secured with 1 billion dollars of special projects.

Is one billion dollars in pay-offs worth 52 billion dollars in taxes? This Legislator would tell you, no it is not.


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