Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez is trying desperately to save AB 5 and salvage her political standing after this disaster. The substantial backlash to the extremely restrictive and ill-conceived AB 5 has forced Gonzalez to take a step back and re-evaluate the bill before it causes even more damage to her career.
Gonzalez doesn’t have the decency or interest in fully abandoning the bill after pushing so hard for it, so she has started pushing for minor changes to AB 5 instead. She has made concessions to freelance journalists allowing them to stay freelance even if they write more than 35 articles for a specific publication in a one-year span. She will also expand other exemptions to cover businesses that provide services to other businesses.
However, a variety of other industries still suffer under the bill even with the proposed changes. Gonzalez has expressed no interest in doing what’s necessary to mitigate the damage being done to the other several million independent contractors.
Gonzalez has failed her constituents and the entire state of California. Because of her lack of foresight, this bill has brought harm to countless industries and an enormous number of California workers. No amount of tinkering or changing of language will make this bill work. If Gonzalez insists on continuing with this bill she will have truly abandoned San Diegans in favor of her own political ambitions. Any attempts to slightly tweak AB 5 are simply Gonzalez trying to retain her political power while saving face.
Now, Gonzalez and Assemblywoman Christy Smith have attempted to petition the Assembly Committee on Budget for $20 million for the California Art Council to fund grant programs for small organizations that make “good faith efforts” to comply with AB 5. Make no mistake, this is bribery money. Gonzalez is trying to bribe organizations to support her failed legislation. This is an underhanded move by Gonzalez and proves just how desperate she is to keep AB 5 alive.