San Diego Union Tribune Editorial: No, Horse-Trading On Gas Tax Legislation Isn’t ‘Bribery’

April 24, 2017

April 21, 2017
By The Editorial Board

Politicians cutting deals to win enactment of legislation is as old as parliamentary lawmaking itself. It certainly lends itself to cynicism. “Laws are like sausages, it is better not to see them being made,” was the famous observation of Otto von Bismarck, the first chancellor of Germany. But after years of federal gridlock, politicians’ horse-trading to get something done seems constructive to the point of being borderline wholesome.

Which brings us to the absurd remarks of Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez, R-Lake Elsinore, who asked state Attorney General Xavier Becerra to investigate Gov. Jerry Brown’s recent maneuvering to win passage of Senate Bill 1, a bold plan to raise gas taxes to fix California’s worn-down roads, highways and transportation infrastructure.

“I am for working toward a solution … but there is a big difference between compromise and bribery,” Melendez said in a statement citing deals Brown struck with state Sens. Richard Roth, D-Riverside, and Anthony Cannella, R-Modesto, and Assemblywoman Sabrina Cervantes, D-Riverside, to gain their votes and benefit their districts. “That’s not ethical and I believe, if the attorney general actually looks into this, SB 1 will be found illegal.”

The kindest possible term for this view of how politics works is obtuse. Brown and accused lawmakers were right to laugh off the allegations.

 

Join the Coalition:

Join as an Individual
Join as an Organization / Company
Join as an Elected Official

Paid for by No on Prop 6: Stop the Attack on Bridge & Road Safety, sponsored by business, labor, local governments and transportation advocates
Committee Major Funding from
California Alliance for Jobs
Southern California Partnership for Jobs
State Building and Construction Trades Council of California
Funding details at www.fppc.ca.gov