California Democrats Allegedly Using Tactics To Block Prop 47 Reform

 June 11, 2024

California Democrats allegedly used legislative tactics to prevent a measure to reform Proposition 47 from appearing on the November ballot, favoring other public safety bills instead. 

According to Fox News, Proposition 47, passed in 2014, reduced penalties for various drug and theft crimes in California. This initiative reclassified several offenses, including shoplifting and grand theft, as misdemeanors if the value of the stolen property did not exceed $950. Law enforcement officials and critics argue that this has increased theft and smash-and-grab crimes across the state.

Bipartisan Efforts to Reform Prop 47 Face Opposition

Californians for Safer Communities, a bipartisan group comprising law enforcement, elected officials, and businesses, has collected over 900,000 signatures in support of amending Prop 47. The proposed amendment aims to increase penalties for crimes that were downgraded under the 2014 measure. However, California Gov. Gavin Newsom and several elected Democrats oppose this reform effort.

Instead of supporting the Prop 47 reform measure, Democrats are pushing for voters to consider other public safety bills. These bills aim to address organized retail theft, car break-ins, and other crimes but do not tackle issues related to personal theft, fentanyl trafficking, or drug treatment incentives.

Inoperability Clauses and Legislative Maneuvering

Some Democrats plan to introduce inoperability clauses into these public safety bills to prevent them from taking effect if voters approve the Prop 47 reforms. They argue that this approach will ensure no inconsistencies in the law. Republicans have criticized this tactic, referring to it as a "poison pill" meant to undermine the reform efforts.

California Assembly Republican Leader James Gallagher has been vocal about his disapproval of these tactics. He believes that the majority of Californians disagree with the Democrats' stance on Prop 47 and want to see changes. Gallagher argues that the proposed Democratic retail package fails to address critical issues that the Prop 47 reform initiative aims to resolve.

Gov. Newsom's Stance on Public Safety

Gov. Newsom has recently adopted a tougher stance on public safety in response to rising crime concerns among Californians. Last year, he announced over $267 million to increase arrests and prosecutions for organized retail crime. Despite this, Newsom has shared anecdotes that suggest he believes Prop 47 is not the primary issue.

During a Zoom meeting on mental health, Newsom recounted an experience where he confronted a store employee who did not stop a shoplifter. The employee attributed the lack of action to Prop 47, highlighting the perception that the law has reduced accountability for such crimes. Newsom disagreed with this assessment, stating that the situation is more complex.

Rising Crime and Public Safety Concerns

Law enforcement officials have frequently pointed to Prop 47 as a significant factor in the uptick in theft and smash-and-grab crimes that have plagued California, especially during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. High-profile incidents, such as a large group ransacking a Nordstrom in Los Angeles, have underscored these concerns. Videos of such brazen thefts have gained traction online, further fueling public debate.

Critics have also taken aim at Gov. Newsom for describing California as a "national model" for combating homelessness, arguing that this overlooks the state's ongoing crime issues. Newsom's recent efforts to address public safety have been seen as a response to these criticisms and the growing dissatisfaction among Californians regarding crime in their communities.

Legislative Tactics and Political Tensions

The introduction of inoperability clauses and other legislative tactics has heightened political tensions in California. Republicans argue that these maneuvers are intended to prevent meaningful reform of Prop 47 and maintain the status quo. Senate Minority Leader Brian Jones has called for stronger laws both in the Legislature and at the ballot box to combat the crime wave in California.

Jones criticized the idea of forcing voters to choose between different public safety measures, describing it as "irresponsible." He contended that some Democratic politicians are too prideful to admit their mistake with Prop 47 and continue to deny the need for reform. This ongoing debate highlights the deep divisions within California's political landscape regarding crime and public safety policies.


California's debate over Proposition 47 and its potential reform reflects broader concerns about public safety and legislative tactics. Democrats and Republicans remain sharply divided on how to address rising crime rates in the state. The bipartisan effort to amend Prop 47 faces significant opposition from Gov. Newsom and other elected Democrats. As the November ballot approaches, the outcome of this legislative struggle will have a profound impact on California's approach to crime and public safety.

About Robert Cunningham

With years of experience at the forefront of political commentary, Robert Cunningham brings a blend of sharp wit and deep insight to his analysis of American principles at the Capitalism Institute.

Top Articles



Receive information on new articles posted, important topics and tips.
Join Now
We won't send you spam. 
Unsubscribe at any time.

Recent Articles

Recent Analysis

Copyright © 2024 -
A Project of Connell Media.