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MALDEF and NALEO side with the Legislative Establishment in Opposing Prop. 11 in the Golden State

October 18th, 2008 · 6 Comments

A pajarito sent me a tip this week that MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund) and NALEO (National Association of Latino Elected Officials) are opposing Proposition 11 in California because they are playing personal politics. Apparently, one of the authors of the bill, which would take the ability to redistrict out of the hands of the state legislature and instead give it to a citizens’ commission, worked for MALDEF at one point and was fired. MALDEF actually has supported efforts to make redistricting less political and transferred to the hands of independent citizens before in a variety of lawsuits, but now the organization has decided to side with the Sacramento establishment.

The Democratic Party in Sacramento, along with the NAACP, the Mexican American Political Association, and some other ethnic rights groups (including MALDEF and NALEO) are against Proposition 11 because they feel that the citizens commission would not accurately represent the ethnic diversity in the state. However, I think it comes down to these organizations being comfortable with the status quo and the existing ethnic leadership in Sacramento and Washington, D.C.

The San Francisco Chronicle has some good information about Proposition 11.  There is broad bi-partisan support for this initiative with backers including Governor Schwarzenegger, former Governor Davis, the AARP, the League of Women Voters, Common Cause, and the ACLU. The state legislature in California has problems producing a budget on time in most years; I certainly don’t see the need to reward them with the ability to draw legislative districts yet again.

You can read more about Proposition 11 here and here.

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Tags: Democratic Party · MALDEF · National Association of Latino Elected Officials

6 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Michaelr // Oct 18, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    Since when is MALDEF truly interested in protecting the political needs of the Latino community? All their efforts are aimed at promoting self-serving interests that will fiscally maintain the status quo of their enterprise.

  • 2 theKaiser // Oct 20, 2008 at 11:44 am

    Looks like I am voting for Prop 11.

  • 3 Bearguez // Oct 21, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    If MALDEF is fighting this, it must be something self-serving. Looks like I will vote for it.

  • 4 Anon Anon // Nov 2, 2008 at 10:33 am

    The author of prop 11 was never fired from MALDEF. That’s ridiculous. The author was universally well regarded, as he’s a smart, thoughtful caring advocate for the community.

    Prop 11 may or may not be a good idea, but gossip shouldn’t be the basis for making your decision.

    Voting rights is complicated and orgs change their position depending on the nuances of the proposal.

  • 5 webmaster // Nov 2, 2008 at 11:28 am

    Anon Anon, thank you for that clarification.

    Why do you think MALDEF and NALEO would not trust a citizens commission, in a state with a large Latino population, to instead give districting to the legislature?

  • 6 Reyfeo // Jan 21, 2009 at 6:25 am

    The answer webmaster is because MALDEF and NALEO have a Latin American Leadership mentality…much like Hugo Chavez and Correa and the Cocaine leaf chewing Evo, they “can’t” trust the people to do the right thing…or they’d lose grip on their powers to influence and govern!

    …And here I thought this was America where the citizens rule and make up their own laws.

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