The Public Employee Supremacy Act of 2021

The California Association Of Professional Scientists (CAPS) is a public employee union representing state scientists that makes political donations to state lawmakers who approve employment contracts with state scientists. CAPS made 76 political donations in 2019-20, including to State Assembly Member Alex Lee who has introduced an Assembly Bill (AB 20) that would exempt CAPS and other public employee unions from a proposed ban on donations to state lawmakers.

Unless amended, AB 20 would permit public employee unions to continue donating to lawmakers like Mr. Lee who approve contracts with public employees that cost taxpayers more than $100 billion per year while prohibiting donations from enterprises that employ private sector workers. Far greater numbers of workers are employed in the private sector, where they (not shareholders) pocket the lion’s share of enterprise revenues (more than 50 percent of Gross Domestic Product is paid out in employee compensation and benefits).

AB 20 must be amended to prohibit donations from any corporation, union or association whose shareholders, employees or members stand to receive money under agreements with the state or its subsidiaries. The sooner lawmakers outlaw political donations from all beneficiaries of state spending, the better.