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California Court: Prop 30 tax increase illegally put at top of ballot, but too late to do anything about it

California Court: Prop 30 tax increase illegally put at top of ballot, but too late to do anything about it

I wanted to share with Legal Insurrection readers an example of ballot measure manipulation that was partly responsible for the November approval of one of the biggest take hikes approved by California in years.

Cal Watchdog writer Katy Grimes has this report about a recent court ruling that declared the placement of the tax measure at the top of the ballot was illegal, but that it is too late to do anything about it because the election already took place, Proposition 30 at the top of the ballot was illegal.

Anyone who still believes that there isn’t monkey business in politics needs only to look at the most recent election and a significant legal ruling handed down on Friday regarding Proposition 30. While it may seem too little, too late, this ruling does matter.

The California State Court of Appeals found that Gov. Jerry Brown and the California Legislature manipulated the ballot process, maneuvering Prop. 30 to land at the top of the ballot, above all of the other ballot measures. Prop. 30 increased taxes $6 billion a year.

Political deception was required to get Proposition 30 was placed at the top of the ballot. An assembly bill (AB 1499) was deemed a “budget Bill”, and was forced quickly through the California Legislature.

AB 1499 cleared the way for Brown’s tax increase initiative, Prop. 30, to receive the number one placement on the November ballot. The bill altered the California statute regarding how ballot measures are placed on the ballot.

Brown was not only desperate to get his tax increase measure on the ballot, he needed it to stand out in the crowded field of ballot initiatives.

Because the budget now only needs a simple majority vote to pass, Democrats created the bill language, and then dropped it into a “spot” budget bill. If the bill had any language about tax increases, it would have needed a two-thirds majority vote by the Legislature.

The “spot” bill, an empty bill awaiting language, was shoved through the Legislature with such force, it passed in only two days. There were no committee hearings or public vetting.

Examiner writer Lorraine Yapps Cohen notes that ultimately the holding of illegality changes nothing, What difference will it make?

California Court of Appeals, however, spotted the “spot” bill and declared it illegal. The questionable legislation putting Prop 30 on top was deemed unconstitutional.

That’s fine. But those who have had a court rule in their favor find that nothing coerces the perpetrator to make amends for losses. And so, we the people have Prop 30 still on the books, collecting 6 billion tax dollars from us every year illegally.

Many citizens are rightly concerned with voter fraud. However, let story this be a lesson to Californians and other Americans: Pay attention to how business gets done in your state capital.

Even though the court ruling allows for future challenges to spot bills, it will do nothing to stop the new Proposition 30 taxes from being implemented.


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How will the dissolution of the Union come about? Will Congress ever have the balls to declare that states such as California, Illinois and New York have lost their right to be states and are now territories? Then split them into smaller chunks and let them re-apply for statehood. My suggestion for Illinois is Cook County is one new state, counties around East St. Louis another, and the rest of the state in happy relief.

    Conservative Beaner in reply to Milwaukee. | January 27, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    First give LA and SF bay area back to Mexico with all persons becoming citizens of Mexico, hell many in LA already are.

    There was a time New England wanted to seceed from the union. Well I say better late than never, maybe Canada will take you.

    As for Chicago maybe we can give it back to the Illini or let it be it’s own country. My mother was born in Nokomis and she knew how corrupt that city was.

Henry Hawkins | January 27, 2013 at 6:37 pm

Man bites dog is news. Political malfeasance in CA? Eh, not so much.

Meanwhile we travel at ever increasing speed back down the road to serfdom. These politicians are nothing but criminals that know how to use the political and legal systems to steal our money and our freedoms. If this violated California’s Constitution why can’t it be overturned. It’s because Democrats control California in the courts, in the legislature and the governorship.

Gee and here a lot of folks thought that Moonbeam was good at manipulating just one thing, but then Linda Ronstadt settled that with:

    Some say the only thing LR saw in moonbeam was cover against surprise visits by the BNE, but that might be merely a rumor. Great cover, btw.

well heres a thought, if something was illegally on the ballot then its not binding.
what a concept.
too simple I guess so we need to parse it 6 ways to sunday to provide employment for the legal and rule making services.

Here in NC, election law dictates that parties be placed on the ballot in alphabetical order. Therefore the Democrat candidates are always listed before the Republican candidates. Now that we have a Republican majority in the Assembly, maybe we can change that.

    You mean republicans might actually defy “tradition”?
    Nevah gonna happun, suh! This is the “South”!

    File the paperwork for an “Agro-Conservative” party, and make sure that the Republican Candidate qualifies for the position every time.

    My guess is that the Democrat legislators will be HOWLING for a “randomized” placement on the ballot before the ink is dry on the filing.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to Chuck Skinner. | January 28, 2013 at 10:47 am

      Let ’em howl. For the first time since 1870, NC has the governorship and majorities in both state houses – veto-proof majorities.

We have a president who is unconstitutionally qualified to hold office, and it seems it’s too late to do anything about that either. (Not true.)

As only a bozo named Hillary Clinton would say, “What difference does that make now?”

So tell me again why we have to follow the law.

Tax Refferendum:  Vote for one of the following:

(1)   Raise taxes by 5 percentage points.

(2)   Taxes will be strictly limited, with any increase being no more than five percentage points, such increase to the specified maximum to be implemented immediately only by confirmation by a special majority vote of the legislature.

(3)   Taxes will be strictly limited, with any increase being no more than five percentage points, such increase to the specified maximum to be implemented immediately only by confirmation by TWO special majority votes of the legislature. The legislature has already voted to NOT RAISE TAXES unless and until there is approval of this ballot measure.

(4)   Taxes will be strictly limited, with NO TAX INCREASE up to 5 percentage points, except by emergency, special session of the legislature.

(5)   Republicans have provided here that taxes will remain at their current heartless levels, benefitting greedy millionaire and billionaire business owners, and causing CONTINUED HUNGER, HOMELESSNESS, LACK of JOB TRAINING, and REDUCTION of VITAL SERVICES, depite a continuing humanitarian need for revenue.

(5) A special, dedicated fund will be established as a lock-box, secure repository to be funded by an additional contributory tax of 5 percentage points, for the sole benefit of orphans, the starving, the homeless, training of the unskilled, and services supporting the continuation of life at the extreme, including hospice care for the destitute. Upon special vote, the legislature may include other worthy objectivess for this dedicated fund.

    None of the above. [Idiot! There are two (5)’s] Instead I vote for number 7.

    (7) Immediate 5% reduction in all taxes, followed in one year by another immediate 5% reduction in all taxes, followed in another year by another immediate 5% reduction in all taxes, followed in another year by another immediate 5% reduction ……….,.,…………. and on and on and on.

    To 49erDweet,

    You seem to have a deficit in recognizing sarcasm. What do you think my comment was about?

    Yes, there are two (5)’s. That’s a typo. So what? I suppose that you are a little old school teacher, looking for typo’s instead of content.

    Leslie Eastman’s post was about manipulation of ballot measures to get approval. How does your comment relate to that?

If anyone naively says we are a nation ruled by laws anymore, I’ll derisively laugh at them mercilessly. God only knows how far we have fallen from our founding ideals. What a shame.