Media exposes collusion between lawyer for Democrats and an FPPC board member.
In just the latest in a series of questionable maneuvers to protect Senator Josh Newman, the target of a recall by his constituents, it was revealed in a story this morning in the Sacramento Bee that a lawyer for Senate Democrats held private meetings and exchanged texts and phone calls with a member of the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC). These contacts were kept secret until a reporter made a Public Records Act request to the FPPC.
The FPPC is currently considering a request by Democrats to allow other lawmakers to make unlimited campaign contribution transfers to Senator Newman, who is the subject of a recall for voting in favor of a recently-approved gas tax increase.
These private meetings raise new questions about both the impartiality of Commissioner Brian Hatch, a former firefighters lobbyist, and legislative Democrats, who face litigation from recall proponents for their last-minute approval of new hurdles that will delay the Newman recall.
“Tax-raisers are in a panic over the thought of losing their supermajority power to pass unlimited taxes,” said Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. “After having socked Californians with billions in new gas taxes, car taxes, and cap-and-trade charges, sleazy maneuvers are their last desperate attempt to cling to power.”
UPDATE at 4:40pm: The Orange County Register published a story on this topic this afternoon.