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Majority Vote

December 18, 2008 | GEORGE SKELTON
"I've got some breaking news for ya," state Senate leader Darrell Steinberg exclaimed as he sat down at a popular breakfast spot near the Capitol on Wednesday. Not another budget scheme, I thought. This is getting tiresome and boring. Then he said the magic words: "Majority vote." Steinberg (D-Sacramento) and Assembly Speaker Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) had devised a deficit reduction plan that could be passed by a simple majority of the Legislature, rather than requiring a two-thirds vote.
December 4, 2012 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
After watching a potentially $90-billion transportation sales tax fail by less than a percentage point, backers of Measure J this week called for a change in the state law that requires no less than a two-thirds majority vote for passage of tax increases. After Los Angeles County election officials finished the final Nov. 6 count in recent days, the measure won 66.11% of the ballots but fell short of passing the two-thirds majority by 0.56 of a percentage point. Nearly 3 million total votes were cast on the measure.
March 18, 1987 | United Press International
A deeply divided Senate refused today to block release of the final $40 million in 1987 military aid to the Nicaraguan contra rebels. The vote was 52 to 48. Vice President George Bush took the gavel to preside in case of a tie. The vote was the first major Senate balloting on a foreign policy issue since the Democrats took control of the chamber Nov. 4 and the revelations of the Iran-contra scandal.
February 23, 1997
The maxim of most smorgasbords is that although the food is rarely any good, there is always lots of it. The same holds true for the array of bills pending or proposed in the state Legislature that deal with the politically popular notion of splitting the San Fernando Valley from Los Angeles.
February 17, 2012 | By Ricardo Lopez
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie followed through on his word Friday, vetoing a gay marriage bill passed by the state's legislature a day earlier.  “I am adhering to what I've said since this bill was first introduced - an issue of this magnitude and importance, which requires a constitutional amendment, should be left to the people of New Jersey to decide," Christie said in a statement. Christie is urging the legislature to put the measure on the ballot in the form of a referendum.
July 14, 1989
Passing federal legislation promoting universal voter registration, as Jackson urges, would leave unaddressed the fundamental problems of our languishing democracy. The problems start with the Democratic and Republican parties, a corrupt set of identical twins which give the electorate a choice between two sets of candidates who ultimately sell out to the same shifting coalition of wealthy interests forming the de facto oligarchy that is the real government of our country. These social parasites are consistently able to subvert public policy to satisfy their unbounded greed while beggaring most of the rest of us. If, like the Russians, we could cast negative as well as positive votes for our candidates, I am quite sure that many more people would show interest in our elections.
May 28, 1989
It's time to go back to the drawing board for West Hollywood. Justly, there are five members on the City Council, seven on the Planning Commission and five on the Business License Commission--each unit requiring a majority vote. Why, then, is one man, Community Development Director Mark Winogrond, given sole authority, against incredible opposition, to grant an overabundance of liquor licenses? In this respect, we are now worse off than when we were under the county. I have never seen a city structure where one man aggregates so much power to himself!
May 28, 2000
Re "Troubled Complex Won't Get Officer," May 18. The Thousand Oaks City Council voted against having a full-time police officer at the Conejo Creek complex where a young man was killed on April 28. According to news reports, an earlier experiment of assigning an officer to the area was successful in reducing crime. If this is correct, it is difficult to comprehend how the majority of the council decided this was too costly. Yet this same City Council voted to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to plant trees and shrubs on a postage-stamp-size lot on Thousand Oaks Boulevard.
June 13, 2013 | By Los Angeles Times Staff
When a deal was reached on the state budget, Gov. Jerry Brown, Senate leader Darrell Steinberg and Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez gathered in the Capitol to declare victory. Missing from the press conference, says George Skelton in his Thursday column , was a fourth group that made a balanced budget possible. "Let's not forget where most of the credit belongs for a punctual, sensible budget," he writes. "It's with another, oft-maligned group: the California voters. " Two votes played a crucial role in this year's largely smooth budget process.
September 2, 2010 | George Skelton, Capitol Journal
California badly needs someone, some party, to just make a decision about a state budget and be held accountable for the consequences. The state has needed that for years. But it's impossible while a two-thirds majority vote is required for legislative passage of a budget and a one-third minority can stand in the way. Can't the governor and the two parties just get together and compromise? Figure out a solution that's acceptable to all three? One — and this is the key — that honestly balances the budget, closing a deficit projected at $19 billion?
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