California Supreme Court Shoots Down Tax Measure

( – When it comes to changing laws, the people are supposed to have a say. In fact, taxation without representation was one of the things we fought for against England. When that representation (i.e., congressmen and women) don’t act on the will of the people, taking an issue before the general population is how the system works — at least it’s supposed to. In California, a ballot measure has now been blocked by the state Supreme Court.

The measure in question was supported by 1.4 million voters and designated on ballots as Attorney General Initiative No. 21-0042A1 and Secretary of State Initiative No. 1935, otherwise known as the “Taxpayer Protection and Government Accountability Act” — TPA for short. The measure requires the state and local governments to obtain approval from two-thirds of voters before new special taxes can be implemented.

There’s a very specific process in California for ballot initiatives to make it to an actual vote. The attorney general’s website says the process “gives California citizens a way to propose laws and constitutional amendments without the support of the Governor or the Legislature.” That process was followed correctly for the TPA.

However, Governor Gavin Newsom (D), along with Democrat legislators, filed suit in September 2023 to have the measure removed from the ballot. Their chief complaint was that it would make it harder for states and local entities to raise funds for emergencies and that the ballot initiative wasn’t the way to change the taxation law. That would take revising the state constitution.

Now, a seven-judge (six of whom were appointed by Democratic governors) State Supreme Court panel has agreed with Newsom. In their unanimous decision, the justices specifically stated they did not concern themselves with “the economic or social wisdom or general propriety of the initiative.” Their only concern was “whether the measure may be validly enacted by initiative.”

Ultimately, ruling that the TPA would revise the state constitution without following the proper procedure, the court has ruled that it cannot be placed on the November ballot for the general public to decide on.

~Here’s to Our Liberty!

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