State Senator Mimi Walters, and Assemblywoman Diane Harkey are both wealthy housewives from southern Orange County now serving in the state legislature. Their latest crusade is to derail California’s High-Speed Rail project. Walters claims the project funding could be better prioritized for “the most vulnerable populations of our state.” She’s lying.
On Tuesday, Harkey and Walters held a press conference to propose a halt to the sale of HSR Bonds to fund the project. The LATimes reported:
Backed by a clutch of Republican lawmakers, Assemblywoman Diane Harkey (R-Dana Point) said the deficit-plagued state could not afford a “shiny new toy” while it cuts services to balance its books. Her bill, dubbed the “Lemon Law for High Speed Spending,” would prevent bond sales to fund the 520-mile system between San Francisco and Los Angeles.
“The voters really believe they have been sold a lemon,” she said, standing next to a box of lemons. “And they are suffering from buyer’s remorse.”
State Sen. Mimi Walters (R-Laguna Niguel) called out Gov. Jerry Brown for proposing to cut billions of dollars in health and human services and public education while promoting the bullet-train project. “High-speed rail is not important enough to prioritize over our children’s future or the most vulnerable populations of our state,” she said.
I cannot think of a more laughable group of legislators the GOP could put up to push their proposal. Both women have been solid NO votes during their legislative careers on legislation to improve the health and welfare of California’s vulnerable populations and funding for education. The sale of HSR bonds has no connection to these services. No additional funding for education or services for the vulnerable populations of California will become available by stopping the sale of HSR bonds. And if there were, they would likely argue that the excess funds should be returned to wealthy Californian’s like themselves in the form of tax breaks.
The LATimes story quotes Brown spokesman Gil Duran’s in response:
“They are grandstanding as usual and not getting anything done as we’ve come to expect,” Duran said. “Find a public works project that hasn’t had to deal with ridicule or nay-saying. The Republicans are playing a very specific role that has been played throughout history by those who wound up on the wrong side of it.”
I do have to hand it to Harkey for her use of imagery in her press event. A sour-puss standing on her Lemon Box to complain about misplaced priorities is both funny and ironic.