Governor Gavin Newsom is headed down the home stretch this week signing and vetoing the remaining bills on his desk before his October 14 deadline. Over the weekend, the Governor made final decisions on a list of bad bills California Family Council has fought all year. There is some good news and some bad news. Let’s start with the good news.
List of Newsom’s Vetoes
- SB 58: Legalizing Psychedelics: This is the second time Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) has tried to legalize for recreational use psychedelics, otherwise known as hallucinogens. This year’s bill removed some of the more controversial forms of the drug, such as LSD. But in the end, Newsom still rejected the bill that barely made it through the Senate and the Assembly, even with some Republican support. (see votes).
In his veto message the Governor agreed with the author that psychedelics have “proven to relieve people suffering from certain conditions.” But Newsom rejected the bill because it didn’t set up “regulated treatment guidelines” to prevent “exploitation” or set up a system of “medical clearance” so those with “underlying psychoses” don’t receive these drugs. (Read about psychedelic harms)
- AB 576: Making Chemical Abortions Even More Dangerous: Newsom vetoed this bill requiring the Medi-Cal health program to pay for chemical abortions to kill an unborn baby up until 11 weeks of gestation, even though the Federal Drug Administration has only approved abortion drugs, misoprostol and mifepristone, on babies up to 10 weeks old. Newsom said the bill wasn’t necessary because the California Department of Health Care Services recently updated its chemical abortion policies to require Medi-Cal to pay for the abortion drugs to kill babies up to 11 weeks.
Meanwhile, the FDA is being sued by Alliance Defending Freedom for removing safeguards for the drugs, even allowing for mail-order abortions.” (Read more here.)
- AB 1432: Requires All Group Insurance Policy to Cover Abortions and Trans-Medicine: The Governor vetoed this bill requiring every out-of-state group healthcare plan sold in California to cover abortions, abortion-related services, and well as transgender mutilating and sterilizing drugs and surgeries on minors and adults. Newsom vetoed the bill as unnecessary, stating he didn’t find any out-of-state health insurance plans not covering abortion or trans-drugs and surgeries. Plus the bill “could invite litigation.”
- SB 541: Requires Schools to Give Teens Free Condoms: This bill would have required public high schools, including charters, to provide internal and external condoms free of charge. Requires schools to allow condom distribution in health classes starting in 7th grade. It also prohibits retail stores from refusing to sell contraceptives to minors.
Newsom stated he vetoed the bill because it created an unfunded mandate on schools and the state didn’t have money in the budget for this expense.
- SB 596: Silencing Parents at Schools: This bill chills the free speech of parents making it a crime to cause a school board member to be “seriously alarmed” or say or write something to them that causes “substantial emotional distress.” These are vague terms open to interpretation and abuse. Those found guilty could spend a year in jail or receive a $ 1,000 fine.
Surprisingly, Governor Newsom agreed the bill affects free speech. First, he pointed out in his veto message that credible threats of violence or harassment can already be prosecuted as crimes, so this bill is unnecessary. But he went on to warn against “exacerbating tensions” by passing laws “perceived as stifling parents’ voices.” “We don’t need more gas on this fire,” but instead need respectful conversations and “more protection for constitutional rights for all people, especially for those with whom we disagree.”
Now the Bad News: Newsom signed these bills
- AB 665: State-Sanctioned Kidnapping: This bill says a counselor or counselor trainee can place a child as young as 12 years old in a residential shelter based on the child’s “OK” alone. No parental consent or notification is required, and no allegation of abuse is necessary before this can happen.
Newsom’s signing statement completely ignored this part of the bill and simply argued the bill was to make sure poor kids 12 and older can consent to mental health services without their parents’ knowledge just like kids with private insurance can.
- AB 230: Tampons in 3rd Grade Boy’s Bathrooms: Newsom signed this bill requiring public schools to stock free menstrual products in all bathrooms in grades 3rd through 5th, including in at least one male restroom. Since most lower grades use the same bathroom, this means the requirement will apply to 1st graders as well. This is already a requirement in grades 6th through 12.
- AB 571: Bill To Protect Abortionists and Transgender Surgeons from Lawsuits: Newsom signed this bill requiring insurance companies to provide liability and damage coverage at standard malpractice rates for abortion and transitioning drugs and surgery providers. This is to protect medical providers like Kaiser who are now facing lawsuits for sterilizing gender-confused kids with puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones, and for cutting off the healthy breasts of 13 and 15-year-old girls. (Read this Kaiser Lawsuit involving California teenager Chloe Cole)
- SB 345: Protects Medical Professionals Doing Abortion and Trans-treatments: Newsom signed this bill to add professional and legal safeguards for medical professionals who abort children or who treat gender-confused people with sterilized drugs and mutilating surgeries where those services are illegal.
- SB 385: Lowers Safety Standards for Abortions: Newsom signed this bill changing abortion safety requirements by allowing physician assistants to perform a first-trimester abortion by aspiration without a physician present.
- SB 487: Protects Abortionists from Being Punished for Abortions in other States: Newsom signed this bill to prevent health plans and insurers from punishing a provider for a civil judgment, criminal conviction, or disciplinary action taken in another state if it is based solely on that state’s law prohibiting abortions or harming minors with trans-drugs and surgeries.