Governor Davis Spurns Five Million Voters, Kills Prop. 187

In a transparent effort to appease ethnic interest groups, newly elected California Governor Gray Davis has used a blatantly rigged legal maneuver to overturn the will of 5 million California voters and kill Proposition 187, the law that banned state funded non-emergency benefits for illegal aliens.

California’s Proposition 187, a voter-sponsored initiative, was passed in 1994 by 59 percent of the vote. Opponents challenged its constitutionality, and immediately got a favorable ruling from U.S. District Court judge Mariana Pfaelzer. The judge used tortured reasoning to block the law, and many observers felt her decision was unlikely to survive on appeal.

As the chief law enforcer of the state, Governor Davis was constitutionally bound to defend the law, even though he had been an outspoken opponent of 187 when it was an initiative. So, in a maneuver designed to avoid having Pfaelzer's ruling overturned by a higher court, Davis entered into a legal "mediation" with 187's opponents. Thus, both sides in this contrived "mediation" process were out to scuttle the law. Not surprisingly, both "sides" in the rigged mediation procedure quickly agreed to kill it.

"In no democracy in the world," FAIR Executive Director Dan Stein charged, "are the results of an election overturned without the voters having their day in court -- that is, until today. The decision to drop the appeal of Prop. 187," he continued, " has absolutely nothing to do with its constitutionality. This is a capitulation by Governor Davis to pressure from an elite group of pro-illegal immigration politicians and organizations. The implications of this are as frightening for the future of self government in our country as they are outrageous."

A June 1999 poll by the Los Angeles Times found that 60 percent of California voters would still vote to bar illegal immigrants from receiving state-funded benefits.

FAIR 9/99