The following is an excerpt from The Newsom Nightmare: The California Catastrophe and How to Reform Our Broken System.
President Biden promised his administration would look more like America, but it looks a lot more like California. Kamala Harris is the vice president, thus proving the Peter Principle is alive and well in the Democratic Party. Californians are in charge of the Treasury, Homeland Security, Labor, Health and Human Services, and Energy. Several UC Berkeley graduates are part of Biden’s team. Berkeley has been the country’s ultra-liberal flagbearer since the ’60s. Radical ideas that began in ivory towers on the Left Coast have made their way into the White House. Dubbed “The West Coast Avengers,” these Californians are already shaping national policy.
President Biden’s “Build Back Better” plan has been called “Making America California Again.” Originally slated to cost $3.5 trillion, the bill’s final version was trimmed to $1.2 trillion. It’s now been implemented partially in the Orwellian titled “Inflation Reduction Act,” which doesn’t do anything about inflation but make it worse and hardly does anything about the world’s pollution problem except lard on added costs to Americans while letting the Chinese and Indians off the hook.
Biden’s Build Back Better Plan/Inflation Reduction Act reads like a Left Coast wish list: implementing the Green New Deal, raising the minimum wage to $15, and expanding family paid leave. It’s no surprise that California was the big winner: The federal government will spend more money in California than in any other state. Biden claimed that the plan would pay for itself. The Congressional Budget Office disagreed and found Biden’s accounting was only $367 billion off.
California is shaping the national debate and influencing policy on myriad issues, including immigration, energy and climate change, public sector employee pensions, and the minimum wage. Biden is following Gov. Newsom’s playbook of courting unions by attempting to give them the same privileges they enjoy in California. The Protect the Right to Organize (PRO) Act was the Democrats’ effort at Californicating the entire country.
The PRO Act has many of the same provisions as California’s disastrous Assembly Bill 5. AB 5 severely restricted the use of independent contractors by all businesses in the state. Wait a minute — not all companies. More than 100 deep-pocketed corporations carved out exemptions for themselves. Uber, Lyft, and other ride-sharing apps used their money to fund and win Prop 22, exempting ride-sharing services from the law. Not exempted? Trucking companies, cleaning companies, yoga instructors, tutors, musicians, and freelancers of every kind. AB 5 is anti-business and anti-independent contractor. The PRO Act has many of the same provisions as AB 5 and will hurt small businesses, which are the lifeblood of our economy.
Biden again followed Newsom’s lead by stacking the deck in favor of unions. Biden encouraged union organizing and collective bargaining with the PRO Act. It would allow union bosses to collect dues from members even if they opt out of the union. Incredibly, it would give unions the right to seek arbitration if union organizing drives fail.
Richard Trumka was the president of the AFL-CIO, a confederation of 57 unions. His remarks revealed the socialist underpinnings of this proposed legislation. Trumka stated, “If you really want to correct inequality in this country — wages and wealth inequality, opportunity and inequality of power — passing the PRO Act is absolutely essential to doing that.” The U.S. Chamber of Commerce slammed the PRO Act, stating it would “undermine worker rights, ensnare employers in unrelated labor disputes, disrupt the economy, and force individual Americans to pay union dues regardless of their wishes.” Thankfully, Republicans killed this thinly concealed union power grab.
Regrettably, the Californication of the national agenda continues. Nancy Pelosi led the charge as speaker of the House, and the new minority leader, Hakeem Jeffries, was her top lieutenant and even more left than she was. On the Democrats’ agenda are socialist policies germinated on the Left Coast like guaranteed income, carbon neutrality, and universal health care.
Gavin Newsom has turned California politics into a lifestyle brand to sell to woke America. Now positioning himself to run for president in 2024, Newsom is doubling down on abortion in light of the Dobbs decision and gun control in light of the recent rash of young men perpetrating mass murders. Never mind that California has memorialized a right to an abortion in its Constitution — an example of a state choosing its own rules rather than a court-imposed federal “right.” At the same time, California has some of the toughest gun-control laws in the country but still has a surging crime problem.
California positioned itself as the moral, anti-Trump alternative, ready and willing to be the left’s standard-bearer in the political and cultural wars that have threatened to destabilize society. Big Tech and corporate media will broadcast their leftist agenda like it’s a moral imperative based on irrefutable science. The front line of the culture and political wars will be fought in Sacramento and Silicon Valley. Newsom is going to try to get them to be national in a race for power as the next president. That cannot be allowed to happen; we cannot allow the whole country to be as mismanaged and unlivable for the middle class as is California.