Hometown California

Episode 06- Ballot Measures November 2020 Part 2, An Interview with Jeremy B. White from Politico

September 02, 2020 Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC) Season 1 Episode 6
Hometown California
Episode 06- Ballot Measures November 2020 Part 2, An Interview with Jeremy B. White from Politico
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Hometown California
Episode 06- Ballot Measures November 2020 Part 2, An Interview with Jeremy B. White from Politico
Sep 02, 2020 Season 1 Episode 6
Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC)

Our host, Paul A. Smith, continues the conversation with Jeremy B. White of Politico about the twelve ballot measures California voters will decide this November. Jeremy B. White co-writes Politico's California Playbook and covers politics in the Golden State.

Together, Paul and Jeremy provide a nonpartisan look at each ballot measure. They discuss the support and opposition arguments and financing behind the propositions, and provide insight about the impact of each measure on rural counties. 

This is the second of two episodes in a series about California's November 2020 ballot initiatives, recorded on August 20, 2020. This episode covers

  • Proposition 19: The Home Protection For Seniors, Severely Disabled, Families, and Victims of Wildfire Disasters Act
  • Proposition 20: Reducing Crime and Keeping California Safe Act
  • Proposition 21: Rental Affordability Act
  • Proposition 22: Protect App-Based Drivers and Services Act
  • Proposition 23: Protect the Lives of Dialysis Patients Act
  • Proposition 24: The California Privacy Rights and Enforcement Act
  • Proposition 25: Senate Bill 10 – Bail Reform Referendum

If you missed the discussion about the first five ballot measures, be sure to listen to Hometown California Episode 5.

This episode is also available in Spanish.

Visit Politico on the web at politico.com
Follow Politico California on Twitter @politicoca
California Playbook: Subscribe Here
More from Politico about the California November 2020 Ballot Initiatives: Available Here

Show Notes Transcript

Our host, Paul A. Smith, continues the conversation with Jeremy B. White of Politico about the twelve ballot measures California voters will decide this November. Jeremy B. White co-writes Politico's California Playbook and covers politics in the Golden State.

Together, Paul and Jeremy provide a nonpartisan look at each ballot measure. They discuss the support and opposition arguments and financing behind the propositions, and provide insight about the impact of each measure on rural counties. 

This is the second of two episodes in a series about California's November 2020 ballot initiatives, recorded on August 20, 2020. This episode covers

  • Proposition 19: The Home Protection For Seniors, Severely Disabled, Families, and Victims of Wildfire Disasters Act
  • Proposition 20: Reducing Crime and Keeping California Safe Act
  • Proposition 21: Rental Affordability Act
  • Proposition 22: Protect App-Based Drivers and Services Act
  • Proposition 23: Protect the Lives of Dialysis Patients Act
  • Proposition 24: The California Privacy Rights and Enforcement Act
  • Proposition 25: Senate Bill 10 – Bail Reform Referendum

If you missed the discussion about the first five ballot measures, be sure to listen to Hometown California Episode 5.

This episode is also available in Spanish.

Visit Politico on the web at politico.com
Follow Politico California on Twitter @politicoca
California Playbook: Subscribe Here
More from Politico about the California November 2020 Ballot Initiatives: Available Here

INTRO: [00:00:00] 
Welcome to Hometown California, a production of the Rural County Representatives of California, advocating for California's rural counties for nearly 50 years. Hometown California tells the rural story through the eyes of those live, work and play in the rural communities of the Golden State. 


PAUL: [00:00:25] 
This is Hometown California. I'm your host, Paul Smith. Today, we are continuing our conversation with Jeremy White, the co-writer of Politico Magazine's California Playbook. Together, we're diving into the remaining ballot measures that have yet to be discussed here on Hometown California. These measures obviously are going to appear on the General Election ballot this November. Welcome back, Jeremy. 


JEREMY: [00:00:45] 
Good to be here. 

 

PAUL: [00:00:47] 
Yeah, we had so much fun going through those first five ballot measures during the last podcast. Now we get to finish it off with the remaining seven. You have been very involved in examining these ballot measures and disseminating a whole bunch of information in Politico about them. So, you really are one of the experts in the state on this. RCRC did weigh in and has taken positions on a number of these and as we go through them. Will point that out. And we do have one more measure that the Board of Directors is going to take up at the upcoming September meeting. So this is going to be an exciting time. Like we mentioned, we're trying to get through the propaganda and give our listeners a relatively unbiased approach to what these measures are and how they will impact them as Californians and as rural voters and rural citizens. So let's pick up from where we left off. We went through Propositions 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18. So let's kick it off with Proposition 19. We talked last time, Jeremy, about Prop 15 and the split roll. This one is kind of a cousin to that conversation. Maybe you can walk through what it does, why it's so important, and, more importantly, how it got on the ballot. 

 

JEREMY: [00:01:58] 
Absolutely. So this is effectively a redo. Back in 2018, the California Association of Realtors qualified a similar ballot initiative, but they kind of abandoned it. They didn't really campaign for it. It lost pretty badly. And so this is essentially a revamped version where they got the legislature on board and lawmakers sent it to the ballot. In a nutshell, this bill would allow some Californians, particularly those who are older, who have been displaced by wildfires, to transfer to a new property and still maintain some of the property tax benefits. The idea being that a lot of folks are, say if you're older and your kids have moved out, you may be afraid of downsizing because you want to keep that lower tax rate locked in. And so this would encourage folks to move. As a sweetener in there, to help get some political support, the money that would be generated by reassessment would go to local governments and firefighting. And then there is also a provision in there that tries to tighten the rules around property inheritance by essentially saying, if you are going to inherit a home from your parents or grandparents, in order to get those lower preferential tax rates, you need to actually occupy the house. So it's intending to prevent situations where somebody inherits a property with low tax rates and then just kind of rents it out. 

 

PAUL: [00:03:26] 
Yeah, and I understand that in that framework you outlined, there's interesting nuances about what type of property can change hands, when it can change hands, or how often. I should let folks know that the RCRC Board of Directors had a huge discussion about this approach and voted to oppose it. I believe it was almost unanimous. This is, I think, one of the very vociferous discussions we had had. The thought was that this eliminates the Board of Supervisors' ability to say yay or nay to one of these transfers, not on an individual basis, but as a general policy. That was one of our big concerns. And then the other one that's really interesting and love to hear your thoughts on it was that there is a belief that if you allow folks that own a home in wealthy coastal areas to transfer their relatively low tax base to a rural property, you're going to basically drive up the price of those rural properties and crowd rural residents out of what would be purchased by a more wealthy coastal prospective buyer. Have you looked at that and your thoughts about those two concerns? 

 

JEREMY: [00:04:31]
That is a really interesting point. I will be honest, I have not looked into that particular piece. But clearly, part of what's motivating this is concerns about the cost of housing in California. You know, the proponents will tell you that this is a way to free up housing stock and not have this situation where people just hold onto these homes because they're afraid of paying higher taxes. But clearly, it's a complicated measure for a fluid market in housing. And so there can be a lot of unforeseen consequences, I think. 

 

PAUL: [00:05:02] 
Yeah, this one, as I think you alluded to, came from the Legislature. It was a way to kind of head off what was to some a more draconian approach by the California Association of Realtors who not only had qualified the measure back in 2018, but we're looking to qualify for something here in the 2020 world. Can you step through kind of what the politics of that was in those final days of the deadline of the legislature? I understand there were a lot of interest groups in the room kind of hammering out what is now Proposition 19. 

 

JEREMY: [00:05:30] 
So this one may be a little inside baseball, but bear with me here. You know, as you said, California Realtors Association got a version of this on the ballot. And then they went to the Legislature and essentially said, let's work together to get a deal. Let's get something that you can live with. And so they coalesced around a version that I mentioned earlier, had some sweeteners to get folks on board by providing more revenue for local governments and for firefighters. That inheritance measure sort of helped bring onboard some folks who are concerned about equity issues. And then this was happening as the deadline was arriving for interest groups to pull measures off the ballot and for the legislature to place measures on the ballot. And so the realtors essentially wrote to California elections officials and said, we will pull this off the ballot if the legislature passes this other thing. And California Assembly Speaker, Anthony Rendon, did not like that. He essentially said it was an illegal move. And we have since seen legislation backed by the speaker to prevent that type of conditional "we'll take this thing off if you do that thing". So that was a political prickliness around this one as there was a lot of, sort of, horse-trading and playing with ballot deadlines going on. In the end, we did get a version of this measure that two thirds of legislators couldn't support, but there were certainly machinations along the way that resulted in some bruised feelings. 

 

PAUL: [00:06:58] 
So in a very crude way, this was the indirect initiative in practice whereby the legislature stepped in and rewrote something that had already or was about to qualify. Kind of harking back to the old days of our initiative process when the legislature had that authority and seems like a very crude way it worked. 

 

JEREMY: [00:07:16] 
Certainly within the last few years, California has given more leeway for proponents to pull a ballot measure. And so this was really an instance of sort of playing chicken to a certain extent with the ballot where groups will qualify something for the ballot and then they can kind of use it as leverage to try to get a better deal out of the legislature. We saw a version of that here. 

 

PAUL: [00:07:40] 
So you have two very, very powerful interests behind this, namely the California professional firefighters and the California Association of Realtors. I'm assuming they will have enough money to run a vigorous campaign. Do you see any formal well-heeled opposition to this effort? 

 

JEREMY: [00:07:56] 
The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association is opposing it. They are a long standing tax watchdog. They kind of grew out of the Prop 13 fight back in the late 70's. And so they are another one of those where I think they lend some credibility because they they really are respected among sort of fiscal conservatives. But I don't see them being able to go toe-to-toe with the firefighters and especially the realtors on this one. So in terms of the money, I think there's going to be an imbalance of favoring the yes side. 

 

PAUL: [00:08:27] 
It'll be interesting. Even though our Board voted to oppose it, it'll be interesting to see how rural voters cast their ballots on this. I think we might see a slight disconnect between the electorate in rural California and their elected leaders. So it's going to be another fascinating political science experiment here. Let's move on to Proposition 20. This is the Reducing Crime and Keeping California Safe. Act. It has its roots in a number of criminal justice reforms that were enacted earlier in the twenty teens, shall we say. Maybe you can walk through what voters should expect from this one. 

 

JEREMY: [00:08:59] 
Certainly. So this is essentially law enforcement groups trying to rollback or tighten up, if you prefer, a couple of voter passed measures. Prop. 47, back in 2014, downgraded certain theft and drug possession crimes from felonies to misdemeanors. And then Proposition 57 in 2016, just kind of a brainchild of then Governor Jerry Brown, makes it easier for nonviolent offenders to win early release from prison. So Proposition 20 on the 2020 ballot would increase the penalties for some of those theft crimes. Law enforcement supporters and grocery stores, who have kicked in some money, say they've seen an increase in crimes like shoplifting, and it would expand the list of crimes that are defined as violent, essentially saying if you have been convicted of these crimes, you don't qualify for early release. So shrinking the pool of people who can win early release. 

 

PAUL: [00:09:54] 
The RCRC Board weighed in on this one and actually is supporting it. There's a number of components to those reforms that the RCRC Board believes need some adjustments and voted accordingly to make those adjustments occur, particularly on some of the issues of whether certain crimes should be felonies and at what threshold. So this will be kind of interesting. Back to the conversation that we had last podcast on whether or not we're going to grant felons the ability to vote while they're on parole, we'll see where the tide of that criminal justice reform, if there are limitations to it. 

 

JEREMY: [00:10:27] 
Yes, certainly. As you said, I think this is one where the world that backers thought we were going to be operating in when they qualified this years ago. And the world that we're in now look very different. I think supporters of this saw it as sort of a test for if voters would agree with them that things have kind of gone too far and we need to walk it back a little bit in terms of reducing sentences and de-incarcerating. But as you mentioned, national protests around policing and law enforcement and sort of critiquing what put folks see as racial inequities in the system, I think that kind of puts the defenders and this one on their back foot, because while they will tell you this is narrowly focused on fixing some errors in those earlier initiatives, the opponents will frame this as the forces of law and order retrenching and trying to roll back reforms. And so I think this is going to be another one that really sort of tests the mood of where we're at right now. 

 

PAUL: [00:11:27] 
Just again, to update voters. This is a measure that actually got the signatures quite a number of years ago through the traditional signature gathering process. But there were a couple of delays and it was put on the 2020 ballot instead of the 2018. So, my, what a difference two years makes. 

 

JEREMY: [00:11:43]
That's right. And there were folks at the time who wanted this on the 2018 ballot as a means to essentially boost conservative turnout in a way that would help Republicans in House races and such. And that ended up being a repeal of the gas tax, that instead sort of was intended to serve that role. Didn't work out that well. A lot of Republicans lost their elections in 2018. And so some folks kind of, Monday morning quarterbacking, thought they should have done this one instead, that crime might have been a more potent issue than gas taxes for getting conservative turnout up. But here we are. 

 

PAUL: [00:12:17] 
The next one's kind of that Yogi Berra saying, "Deja vu all over again," and that's Proposition 21. This is a rent control effort. Maybe talk about what voters saw in 2018 and what they're going to see this time. 

 

JEREMY: [00:12:29] 
Certainly, you know, it's pretty similar. 2018, a measure on the ballot that lost pretty decisively would have repealed a state law that limits how much local governments can impose rent control. So passing it does not immediately institute rent control. It just allows local governments to do so in a way that they haven't been. That lost pretty badly. The 2020 version, pretty similar. There are some more provisions in there sort of trying to shield small landlords from this, but it has the same backers in the AIDS Healthcare Foundation and generally the same opponents. You're seeing a lot of real estate interests opposing it. And you're also seeing the Realtors and the Apartment Association finding common cause in opposition with the state's powerful construction unions, which are amplifying the argument that this is going to result in less housing construction, which is the last thing California needs right now when we're facing a dire housing crunch. So that is kind of where we stand on this one. You know, the supporters in the AIDS Health Care Foundation and tenant's activists, they think that a more liberal electorate and some of those changes, tweaks to the 2018 version, will convince voters to act differently this time. 

 

PAUL: [00:13:43] 
The RCRC Board went ahead and adopted a position of not having a position on this one. Very similar to the 2018 effort. There just didn't seem a lot of appetite to get into this fight, even though there would be some empowerment of local Board of Supervisors to set some rent control schemes up, but just didn't seem like this is something rural elected county supervisors want to weigh in. So let's move on to another really, really big enchilada that I think it's going to be pounding the airwaves over the next 70-some-odd days, and that's Proposition 22. Jeremy, maybe enlighten our voters on the controversy surrounding this measure. I know this is quite a complex one, so we'll let you dive into it. 

 

JEREMY: [00:14:22] 
Yes, absolutely. And in fact, this is one where, lucky for your listeners, there's been news on it today. So back in 2018, the California Supreme Court created a new test classifying workers. Broadly speaking, workers are either employees, which comes with various benefit guarantees like unemployment insurance, minimum wage, et cetera, or they're independent contractors. They set their own hours. You don't get those same guarantees. That's a simplified version. In 2018, the California Supreme Court said here's a new test for determining who's what. The effect of that is, essentially, a lot more employees, a lot fewer independent contractors. The legislature passed a law, AB 5, that sort of solidified and expanded that ruling. Now, this has consequences for a lot of industries, but it is especially consequential for app-based gig-economy companies like Uber, Lyft, or DoorDash where you order a ride or some food on your phone and you're picked up, or food is delivered to you, by an independent contractor. Under AB 5, it looks likely that those people would instead have to be employees. California has sued Uber and Lyft to compel them to treat those drivers as employees. And so the companies have gone to the ballot with Proposition 22. It would essentially give them a reprieve from this mandate. It would say those drivers, those delivery people, can continue to be independent contractors. We'll give them some benefits and wage guarantees. Not what they would get as employees, but we'll give them something in exchange for them staying independent contractors. Today, before I got on the phone with you, the courts had issued an injunction saying Uber and Lyft had to reclassify their drivers as employees and that order was going to take effect at midnight tonight. Uber and Lyft said if that happens, we're suspending our operations in California. No Uber and Lyft for a few months. As it happened, they got a last minute legal reprieve so those cars will stay on the road. But I think the events of today and the last week really sort of demonstrate what the stakes are, which is that these businesses are saying if you impose this mandate on us, we're not going to be able to function and we're gonna have to pull out for a while and then completely change our business model. And that's the type of argument that they are going to be making to voters. 

 

PAUL: [00:16:45]
I think this is going to be one of those classic California confusions. On one hand, you have a very liberal labor friendly state, but at the same time it's the home of the cutting edge of various technology opportunities, shall we say. And with Uber headquartered here in California, and I think DoorDash as well, this is gonna be a real clash between kind of that one aspect of California, which, again, wants to protect labor rights to any extent, yet at the same time wants to be the center of tech. How's that going to play out? 

 

JEREMY: [00:17:19] 
You know, I think that this is a fascinating one for the reasons you mentioned, because it's not just a really direct challenge to these tech companies from organized labor, which is kind of a watershed moment in thinking about employment rights and the changing economy. It's also happening in the state that nurtured these companies and that is seen as this cradle of innovation. But I think you've also seen public sentiment really shift on that. For so many years, I think Silicon Valley in general, they could kind of do no harm, politically speaking. Politicians of both parties and sort of laud them as these engines of American entrepreneurship and innovation and jobs. But you've really seen that rhetoric shift in recent years. And a lot of those former supporters now say these companies are not doing right by their workers, they're trying to get their own set of rules, and now that they've gone from sort of scrappy startups to billion dollar IPOs, there's a lot more political desire to rein them in. And so I think that Prop 22 is a chance for voters to sort of draw a line on what type of work they think we should be promoting in a changing economy. But it's also really a test of the political standing of Silicon Valley at a time when, as I said, they've really slipped in the public estimation. 

 

PAUL: [00:18:39] 
Is it your sense that Silicon Valley and Uber, Lyft, DoorDash in particular, are going to spend whatever it takes to get 22 across the finish line? 

 

JEREMY: [00:18:48] 
Oh, absolutely. I think this is a good example of one where there is such a direct financial interest. They've already put in $110  million between them- between those five- and I think they are willing to spend what it's going to take on this one. 

 

PAUL: [00:19:00] 
Do you think labor can match that? 

 

JEREMY: [00:19:02] 
I don't know that organized labor can match that. I think organized labor certainly sees this as an incredibly important fight. The California Labor Federation was the driving force behind AB 5. Labor sees this as not only a way to make the economy more fair for workers, but as a way to potentially have a path to organize more workers. But keep in mind, organized labor is playing in a lot of different races. This, split role, various others, not to mention legislative stuff. For Uber and Lyft and Doordarsh, and Instacart and Postmates, this is it. This is the show. And so I think that these sort of competing motives on this one for the gig companies, this is their sole focus. And so I think they probably will be able to marshal more resources. 

 

PAUL: [00:19:50] 
What's your sense that if this doesn't pass, whether Uber and the other companies you mentioned really do follow up on their threat and walk out? I mean, it seems like, man, it's a big market to walk out on. Do you really think they'll follow through if if the voters don't give them what they're asking for in Prop 22? 

 

JEREMY: [00:20:07] 
I don't think they would leave the state permanently. I think what they were threatening to do today was to leave the state, to suspend operations in the state, until the core challenge is resolved and people vote on Prop 22. And their message was not we're leaving California forever. Their message was, we are not going to be able to just flip a switch as they would say and change how we do our business. What I do think would happen if they fail and if the voters reject this is that we can see what Uber and Lyft have been warning about, which is essentially fewer cars on the road, which is going to mean higher places and longer for a car to get there. Now, the extent to which that really changes the experience for both drivers and riders is hard to say. But I do think it would force them to change their business model in a way that not only might make them less profitable, but that might affect the options for both drivers and riders. 

 

PAUL: [00:21:01] 
And for our listeners, RCRC has not yet considered this one. This is one we will be taking up at our September board meeting. So I can't really offer any comment from what the RCRC Board of Directors feels about this one. I assume they'll have seen a lot of ads up until September 16th on this one. So hold on your hat. Next one is Prop 23. We talked about deja vu just a moment ago with Prop 21. This one seems like deja vu on top of deja vu. Maybe tell our listeners what's at stake here. 

 

JEREMY: [00:21:31] 
Certainly. So, you know, as you mentioned, this is another repeat fight. Essentially, this is a power struggle. And it's a power struggle between kidney dialysis clinics and organized labor, in particular the health care arm of SEIU. They battled in the legislature. There was a similar initiative on the ballot last time that would have regulated kidney dialysis clinics more, backed by labor. The voters rejected that one decisively, although kidney dialysis industry groups spent a lot of money to defeat it. And it's pretty similar this time. The exact mechanism of regulation is different this time. This measure would require a medical doctor to be onsite at dialysis clinics as opposed to current requirements, which require some licensed and trained professionals, but not a full doctor necessarily. But I think this really boils down to a power struggle. And a lot of folks require dialysis. This is an industry that generates a lot of profit. And I think organized labor wants to be able to assert themselves and sort of expand their presence in that industry. 

 

PAUL: [00:22:40] 
The RCRC Board has not weighed in on this one. They did not weigh in on a similar measure, as you alluded to, Jeremy, two years ago. So I think this one's going to just be out there, be very interesting to see how this deja vu works. Another one is Prop 24, another initiative measure dealing with privacy. We don't expect the RCRC Board to weigh in and consider this one, but I think it'd be helpful for our listeners to just get a good thumbnail analysis of what this proposes to do. 

 

JEREMY: [00:23:07] 
Sure. This is, as you mentioned, kind of a complicated one. But essentially, what you have to know is last election, a privacy advocate named Alastair Mactaggart qualified a ballot initiative that would have boosted consumer privacy, giving folks more control over their data online, how it's bought and sold, and what companies keep about them. Ultimately, it was another sort of leverage play in which the legislature passed sort of a last minute deal to get that off the ballot and passed a fairly sweeping California privacy law that actually took final form just this month. But Mactaggart is back. He says that that last law did not quite accomplish what he wanted to accomplish, so this is sort of expand upon it and fortify it. 

 

PAUL: [00:23:54] 
Yeah, this one we'll be watching to see what happens with some interest from afar. The last measure we'll talk about, I think, is another one of fascination. This one's not a necessarily initiative, nor is it, you know, something put on by the legislature. It's a referendum. We don't see these very often. But this is the issue of bail reform and the enactment of Senate Bill 10 a number of years ago that now goes before the voters in the form of a referendum, whereby, if the voters say, yes, this will become law- SB 10 will be the law of the land- and if they say no, they'll reject what the legislature enacted. Maybe walk through what this does and then we'll talk a little about its impact on counties. 

 

JEREMY: [00:24:34] 
This, as you mentioned, is an outgrowth of a law the legislature passed prohibiting cash bail. And, almost immediately the bail industry went to the ballot to qualify a referendum. You know, the nice thing about qualifying a referendum, if you have the money to do it, is it suspends the law until voters weigh in. And so, at a minimum, the bail industry bought themselves some time. Because of coronavirus cash bail actually was reduced to zero in a lot of cases. But leaving that aside, the cash bail prohibition would not take effect, and so the bail industry could continue doing its thing. And in the meantime, they are running a campaign which, interestingly, is less about public safety in terms of their message. So we have not heard as much from them about how this is going to result in dangerous people being released. They've really sort of leaned on the racial justice piece of it. And I should say the cash bail prohibition passed in Sacramento. Some civil rights groups did abandon it in the end because it substitutes, rather than these sort of inflexible bail schedules which determine the type of requirements a judge would put on somebody bailing out, rather than that, it creates essentially a risk assessment algorithm that determines whether somebody should be released or not. And so opponents, I think, are going to really hammer away at saying, you know, that's unjust, too. That substitutes the judge's wisdom for this sort of a black box or a formula. But regardless of the arguments that they are putting out there, clearly this is about the bail industry trying to fend off extinction. 

 

PAUL: [00:26:11] 
Yeah, it's kind of like the Uber Lyft conversation, isn't it? It's like these interests are fighting for their survival based on what has happened in the legislature and now, basically, it's do or die if they don't get their way at the ballot box. 

 

JEREMY: [00:26:23] 
Absolutely. I think these are pretty straightforward. A law came out of California that threatens these industries pretty directly and so they're going to the ballot to try to fight that off. 

 

PAUL: [00:26:34] 
And where do you think the money to sustain Senate Bill 10 is going to come from? Obviously, the bail industry is going to work to defeat SB 10 and ask for a no vote. Where's the yes vote money going to come from? 

 

JEREMY: [00:26:46] 
So, we've seen some money from labor, groups like SEIU, and then we've also seen some sort of wealthy individuals who tend to get money to progressive causes, putting some money into this. I think labor is probably the more potent one in the situation. But I think this is probably, as with the Uber Lyft one, one where there is the sort of imbalance of motivation that means one group is going to be more motivated on this one than the others. You know, the bail industry it's a do or die moment for them. The defenders of this law would like to see it remain on the books. But in terms of motivation and their financial resources, I think there will probably be a mismatch. But as sort of a thread running through so many of these, in a moment in which folks are really thinking about criminal justice and racial issues, the idea that cash bail sort of unfairly punishes people for being poor, which more often than not tends to be people of color, I think is something that was already very much out there in the bloodstream even before the last few months of protest. And so I think, again, the people who are arguing, you know, we're fighting injustice, they seem to have momentum on their side. 

 

PAUL: [00:27:57] 
The RCRC Board of Directors took the position of not having a position. The concerns were that counties might be facing some costs associated with its implementation but at the same time, if it's not this, the federal courts could easily step in and we may not have any control or have any sense of what the destiny is with the cash bail system. 

 

PAUL: [00:28:18] 
Well, Jeremy, this has been a fascinating conversation. I know our listeners will feel the same way after listening. I think folks are going to have to listen to this two and three times over because so much of this is complex and evolving. But we really appreciate your time today. Maybe put in a plug for Politico and just tell people where they can find some more information about your publications and all of the upcoming work that you're going to be doing here in the election season. 

 

JEREMY: [00:28:42] 
You can check out our California ballot initiative tracker at Politico.com/interactives/2020/California-November-Ballot. 

And if you want to stay up to date on all of the latest developments in California politics, our California Playbook morning newsletter is free. It hits your inbox every day around 6:00 a.m. and we work hard to make sure it includes all of the critical information about what's going on in California politics from Sacramento to what Nancy Pelosi is doing in Washington, D.C., to House races, and everything in between. So there's my plug. Thanks for giving me a chance to do it. And thanks a lot for having me on. 

 

PAUL: [00:29:24] 
Yeah, absolutely, Jeremy. 

 

OUTRO: [00:29:26] 
You've been listening to Hometown California, sponsored by the Rural County Representatives of California. I'm your host, Paul Smith. Make sure you listen to part one of our series. Thanks again for listening.