Commissioner Thompson Plays Attack Dog Role with Earned Sick Days
In a blatantly political move, Orange County Commissioner Jennifer Thompson called for a second ballot measure to counter the citizen initiative that was the first to qualify by petition in Orange County history. Thompson’s measure would prevent government from regulating employee benefits, such as sick time, and the Commission should vote today on the matter. This would become “Question 2” after Earned Sick Time’s “Question 1” on the Orange County local ballots.
The Earned Sick Time initiative, being led by Citizens for a Greater Orange County, succeeded in collecting enough valid signatures after the primaries weeks ago. To do this, the coalition collected over 50,000 signatures from registered voters. Now, Commissioner Thompson will attempt to place her measure on the ballot after only one Commission meeting, as the County Commission is able to vote to place local measures on the ballot. She seems to be doing the bidding of the Chamber of Commerce, not looking out for the true interest of her community.
Big business interests are already so scared at the thought of this worker’s rights issue going before the voters, they have sued to block the measure from the ballot. The Chamber of Commerce and Disney have led the fight against Earned Sick Time from the start – from lobbying County Commissioners, to preparing a multi-million dollar counter campaign and now the lawsuit which has a September 7th hearing scheduled.
But as an elected official Commissioner Thompson should know better. Her measure only serves the purpose to confuse voters and she should not use her office or position on the Commission to manipulate the democratic process. She should support the democratic process. At the end of the day, if she is so against this measure she should get involved in the “vote no” efforts and not try to confuse her own constituency with a dueling ballot measure.
Commissioner Thompson should withdraw her effort. Mayor Jacobs and the Orange County Commission should reject this political attempt to manipulate the process and let the voters have their say.