LWVC Supports Proposition 50

Suspension of Legislators, on the June 7 ballot

1. This constitutional amendment will give the houses of the legislature clear authority to discipline members by suspending them and withholding their pay.

2. Lawmakers should be able to hold their colleagues accountable if they breach the public’s trust.

3. Safeguards in the measure will prevent this authority from being misused for partisan purposes.

League Position for Support
Suspension of Legislators — Proposition 50 would give the Legislature clear authority to discipline Senators or Assembly Members by suspending them without pay. Lawmakers should be able to hold their own colleagues accountable if they breach the public’s trust. This commonsense measure was placed on the ballot with strong bipartisan support.

It is currently possible to suspend legislators, but not to suspend their salary or benefits. This measure would allow, but not require, the Legislature to suspend a member and deem the salary and benefits forfeited.

Such actions are highly unusual. Over the years, five senators have been expelled, and several senators accused of corruption resigned in 1985. The Assembly has never suspended or expelled a member.

League position on Representative Government: The League of Women Voters supports measures that promote an open governmental system that is representative, accountable, and responsive.

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