New Year’s resolutions and opportunities – CFA has sharpened resolve heading into 2015

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DECEMBER 29, 2014

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UPDATE: There are less than 60 hours left in 2014! Will you help us meet our year-end goal to raise of $117,780 by January? Please visit www.CaliforniaFamily.org to make a secure tax-deductible gift today!

By Lori Arnold
Research Analyst

With most Christmas wish lists now complete, Americans are anxiously planning for 2015. Many are filling the void with new lists, boasting self-motivated resolutions vowing to make us better human beings in the New Year.

But it’s no surprise that these resolutions are often as fickle as those making them. We are broken people who have little sway to make demonstrative changes on our own. But when we tap into God’s will, Christ’s heart for obedience and the Holy Spirit’s transformative power, we can—and do—move mountains.
Through God’s grace, each one of us can accomplish more than mere arbitrary character enhancements. We can resolve to change hearts, open minds, and reshape Caliornia’s culture.

In the spirit of resolutions, we at California Family Alliance and California Family Council resolve to expand our relentless pursuit of sound public policy informed by a Biblical worldview. With your continued help, we will continue to defend Life, Family, and Liberty, a colossal task given the numerous attacks to our traditional values we anticipate in the coming year. Here are just a few examples we expect to face in the coming 12 months:

  • We predict that lawmakers will make yet another attempt to legalize assisted suicide under the misleading guise of “compassionate care.”
  • Some progressives may try to follow Colorado’s lead by legalizing the recreational use of marijuana, although Governor Jerry Brown said in March he was not convinced doing so would in the best interest of the state.
  • Senate Bill 323, which would have forced a punitive sales tax on all youth-oriented nonprofits and schools that ban homosexuals, failed last session but may be reintroduced in 2015.
  • Anti-family forces will undoubtedly introduce ever more expansive legislation attempting to guarantee special protections for the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender lobby.
  • Despite numerous failed attempts to widen Internet gaming and sports bets over the past few years, more gambling bills will likely find their way in the Assembly or Senate.

Finally, even if these dangerous policy changes are not introduced in the Legislature, they could still find their way onto the 2016 ballot as an initiative or constitutional amendment. Due to California’s historically low voter turnout on November 4, activists on both the left and right now face dramatically lower thresholds of the signatures needed to qualify future ballot measures.

Stephen Frank, in a blog on the California Political Review, highlights the impact the fall’s election will have on the 2016 and 2018 ballots. His piece includes a thoughtful article by Faultlines columnist John Myers, senior editor of Northern California’s KQED radio.

Although the actual vote count for the 2014 gubernatorial race (7.3 million) was slightly higher than Franks and Myers projected, (the final vote tally was certified after his November 13 posting), the new signature requirements will be just 365,000 for statutory initiatives and only 585,000 for constitutional amendments.

In short, this means the cost and effort required to qualify a ballot measure is now greatly reduced. This is in sharp contrast to the past four years (2010-2014), when the threshold—based on the 10.1 million votes cast in the 2010 race between Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman—was 504,760 and 807,615 respectively.

Although progressive activists are no doubt chomping at the bit to try and enact their policies through this so-called “direct democracy,” there is also a silver lining for social conservatives. Since we also now benefit from the reduced qualifying requirements, we have been given a unique opportunity to place pro-family legislation directly before the voters. You can be sure that CFC and CFA will keep you updated on further developments in the next 24 months!

Whether the action emanates from the Legislature or the ballot, our twin organizations are committed and resolved to remain on the policy frontlines. Will you stand with us in 2015? Please visit www.CaliforniaFamily.org to make a tax-deductible end-of-year gift today!

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