Saturday, May 25, 2024

GOING REPUBLICAN? Independent Contractors Outraged by Calif. Law That Restricts Them

‘I see a revolution on the horizon…’

Uber drivers lobby for ’employee’ designation in California. / IMAGE: Sacramento Bee via Youtube

(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) The repercussions of California‘s union-backed legislation to regulate the emerging “gig economy” are starting to show, less than two months since the law took effect.

According to City Journal, a quarterly publication from the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, freelancers in the state are now starting to revolt against AB5.

The sweeping bill that claimed to advance the interests of independent contractors working for companies like Uber and Lyft, but in reality—whether intentionally or not—it forced many smaller employers to scale back their reliance on stringers.

Now, some of those newly jobless, living in one of the country’s most expensive and over-taxed regions with an already rampant homeless problem, are starting to blame the left-wing nanny state for their escalating financial woes.

“I’m seeing a lot of people like me who are either going Independent or Republican, myself included,” said Gloria Rivera, a San Diego-based, Peruvian-born translator and interpreter who became a U.S. citizen and was previously registered as a Democrat.“The Democrats are not listening to us.”

The AB5 legislation seems, in fact, to impact Democratic fields disproportionately, harming people like artists and musicians who rely on session work, and blogger–journalists who no longer have the assurances of a staff position at a newspaper.

The bill also has harmed low-wage workers in industries like hospitality and health-care.

“Clients with whom they fostered valuable relationships are gone—as are their successful careers and incomes,” wrote City Journal.

“An overwhelming majority … identify as liberals and have generally voted along the blue line,” it continued. “Today, however, many are so disillusioned with their representatives that they’re changing political loyalties.”

Some are even going so far as to demand the law be repealed and confronting one of its major advocates, San Diego Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, who authored the bill.

“Lorena Gonzalez is doing a great job turning everybody red,” Rivera said.

Fueling their outrage is that Gonzalez, herself, along with other top California Democrats, continue to deny the unintended consequences of their folly.

“I understand that that’s what you’ve been told by some folks, but there’s absolutely no data indication to suggest that thousands of people have been put out of work,” she claimed in an interview with KUSI.

Gonzalez is seeking to become California’s secretary of state—and given the Left’s stranglehold on state politics, she normally would be a shoo-in.

However, the outrage over the AB5 bill is casting doubts on her political future, and possibly even might help Republicans gain further inroads in coming elections.

“I see a revolution on the horizon,” said musician David Mills, of Lake Elsinore.

“This may be the final straw that breaks the camel’s back. But I think it’s leading to something good,” said Mills, who created the Facebook group Freelancers against PRO Act.

“The American people on all sides are waking up,” he continued. “We’ve gotten too caught up in partisan support. Now we’re paying attention. There is a huge uprising. People had to lose their jobs to find out what it was.”

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