Copyright
California Legislative Counsel Bureau California. Secretary of State.

Amendments to the Constitution and proposed statutes : with arguments ... online

. (page 9 of 36)
Online LibraryCalifornia Legislative Counsel Bureau California. Secretary of StateAmendments to the Constitution and proposed statutes : with arguments ... → online text (page 9 of 36)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


call to his assistance the controller, treasurer,
and secretary of state, and compare the returns
so certified to him ; and it shall be the duty of
the executive to declare, by his proclamation,
such revised constitution, as may have been rati-
fied by a majority of all the votes cast at such
special election, to be the Constitution of the
State of California.

Section 2, article XVIII, proposed to be amend-
ed, now reads as follows:

EXISTING LAW.

Section 2. Whenever two thirds of the mem-
bers elected to each branch of the legislature
shall deem it necessary to revise this constitu-
tion, they shall recommend to the electors to
vote, at the next general election, for or against
a convention for that purpose, and if a majority
of the electors voting at such election on the
proposition for a convention shall vote in favor
thereof, the legislature shall, at Its next session,
provide by law for calling the same. The con-
vention shall consist of a number of delegates
not to exceed that of both branches of the legis-
lature, who shall be chosen in the same manner,
and have the same qualifications, as members of
the legislature. The delegates so elected shall
meet within three months after their election, at
such place as the legislature may direct. At a
special election to be provided for by law, the
constitution that may be agreed upon by such
convention shall be submitted to the people for
their ratification or rejection, in such manner as
the convention may determine. The returns of
such election shall, in such manner as the con-
vention shall direct, be certified to the executive
of the state, who ^hall call to his assistance the
controller, treasurer, and secretary of state, and
compare the returns so certified to him ; and it
shall be the duty of the executive to declare, by
his proclamation, such constitution as may have
been ratified by a majority of all the votes cast
at such special election, to be the Constitution of
the State of California.

ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF ASSEMBLY CON-
STITUTIONAL AMENDMENT NO. 88.

When the question of calling a convention to
revise our present state constitution was before
the last legislature for consideration, certain rad-
ical defects both as to the method of choosing
Twenty-elflil



delegates to and the powers of such a conventloi
were discovered. This amendment corrects Wci
defects. It was heartily supported both by thoa»
who opposed a convention at this time (includim
the author of this amendment) and by tlioai
favoring such a convention (Including the authd
of that proposition).

The defects corrected are:

First — ^A non-partisan method of selecting dele<
gates is substituted for a partisan one.

By requiring their election In the same ma*
ner as members of the legislature, the preseal
wording necessitates the election of delegates ai
partisans — Progressive, Republican, Democratli
or what not. The same compelling reason thai
now requires the non-partisan selection of fre*
holders to frame a city charter still more A^
mands that the framers of a new constltutifli
shall be so selected.

The method of selection Is the so-called "Berke*
ley" plan, now in force in San Francisco, SaOi
ramento, Berkeley and other cities. If OM
candidate gets a majority of all the votes call
at the first, or primary, election, he is thereby
elected. If no one so gets a majority the two
highest fight it out at the second election. How-
ever, if any other plan of selecting delegatet
shall hereafter seem better, the legislature sub-
mitting the question of a convention can, at the
same time, submit such other plan, which If ap-
proved is used for such convention without neces-
sitating a change in the constitution.

/Second — The time within which the convention
must meet after the election of delegates Is
changed from "three" to "nine" months.

In order that the attention of the people of the
state be focussed on the work of such an im-
portant convention, it should not be held during
a session of the legislature. The only way this
could be avoided under the present provision
would be to hold two special elections for the
nomination and election of such delegates, thereby
involving a public expense of at least half a
million dollars, which could be saved under the
"nine months" provision by utilizing the regular
elections.

Third — Proper powers are given the convention.

Under the present provision, the convention
can do but one thing — submit for adoption or re-
jection one entire, complete constitution. A con-
stitution, desirable on the whole, may be defeated
through containing some one provision upon
which the voters difter from the convention, and
so the whole work and expense of the conven-
tion go for naught. The added power to submit
alternative propositions (already possessed by
city charter framers) makes possible the appro-
val or rejection of a doubtful provision without
endangering the constitution as a whole.

It is further made possible (as Is now the case
in many states) for the convention to submit its
work in the form of separate amendments, thus
giving the people a chance to vote on each sepa-
rate amendment.

Out of the thirty-five states providing for con-
stitutional conventions, but four place such limits
on their powers as does California.

Wm. C. Clark,
Assemblyman Thirty-seventh Dlgtrlct
Henry Ward Brown,
Awsgmblyman Forty-second Dlatrlct



MINIMUM WAGE.

Assembly Constitutional Amendment 90 adding section 17!4 to article XX of constitution.

Atltlloirizes legislature to provide for establfshment of minimiim wa|^ for wmnsM snd vAxxotb, and
;or comfort, health, safety and general welfare of any and all employees: declares that no coireti-
tutional provision shall be construed as limiting authority of legislature to confer upon any com-
mission now or hereafter created such power as legislature deems requisite to accomplish provisions
)f this section.

state are receiving under that sum. Is 14.00,
$5.00, 16.00, $7.00, or |S.O0 a week enough to
provide a growing woman with proper living?
The work of the Industrial Welfare Commission
is to find out what proper living costs. What It
really costs to house, feed and clothe a woman
dependent upon herself in the different parts of
California ; to find out what are the actual con-
ditions of her employment and to investigate into
the health, safety and welfare of the workshops.
When this investigation has been made, which
must take place in this great state, the conunis-
sion may determine the minlnmm wages, length
of periods of apprenticeship, and hours of labor,
not to exceed the limit prescribed by law, which
is eight hours in some industriea

The most powerful reason for action at this
time Is to get the wage fixed before the opening
of the Panama canal, when the great horde of
cheap labor from southern Europe will come to
lower the California standard of living and tend
to bring the American and native born down to
living conditions entirely foreign to us and to the
California ideal of necessary comfort

Many employers in California pay good wages
and desire proper conditions for their employees,
and many succeed in giving these conditions now,
but less kindly employers undersell the better
ones because they pay lower wages. These un-
fair employers will be compelled to come up to
the standard set by the commission after its in-
vestigations, and thus be placed in a position
where they will be on the same competitive basis
as the employers who are to-day giving their
employees proper living and working conditions.
With adequate food and comfortable housing,
the workers will be more efficient and can give
better value for the money received.

Interstate competition will not be a consider-
able factor, as Oregon and Washington have
similar commissions, and are controlling their
conditions of industry as in California.

The legislature also passed constitutional
amendment to article XX, numbered section 17i,
giving the legislature, or Its delegated body, the
commission, the right to fix minimum wages, and
this is done to make sure that after the commis-
sion's work is done. Its findings and rulings can
not be assailed and made useless by the state
courts declaring this act unconstitutional. To in-
sure the women and minors of this state a living
wage it is most necessary that the voters of Cali-
fornia vote "Yes", on this amendment.

A similar law in Oregon has been sustained by
the Oregon courts and is now before the United
States supreme court. Louis D. Brandeis and
Josephine Goldmark have presented the brief In
support of this I$iw. It Is expected that the
United States supreme court win hold as it has
with the eight hour law — "legislation that is not
in conflict with the federal constitution, but is an
extension of the police power of the state." To
be sure that nothing In our state constitution
VTill prevent this great act of justice and mercy
being done to protect the women of this state,
vote "Tea" on Assembly Constitutional Amend-
ment No. 90.

W. A. Roberts,
Assemblyman Sixty-first District.
..gitizedbyC Twenty-nine



^ssehfibly Constitutional Amendment No. 90, a
resolution to propose to the people of the
State of California an amendment to the the
Constitution of the State of California by
adding to article XX, a new section to be
numbered 17 J relating to the conditions of
labor and welfare of employees.

The legrlslature of the State of California, at
its regular session commencing on the sixth day
of January, 1913, two thirds of the members
elected to each of the two houses of the said
legislature voting in favor thereof, hereby pro-
poses an amendment to the Constitution of the
State of California by adding to article XX
thereof a new section to be numbered as 17 J to
read as follows:

PROPOSED LAW.

Section 175. The legislature may, by appro-
priate legislation, provide for the establishment
of a minimum wage for women and mluors and
may provide for the comfort, health, safety and
general welfare of any and all employees. No
provision of this constitution shall be construed
as a limitation upon the authority of the legisla-
ture to confer upon any commission now or here-
after created, such power and authority as the
legislature may deem requisite to carry out the
provisions of this section.

ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF ASSEMBLY CON-
STITUTIONAL AMENDMENT NO. 90.

The legislature of 1913 passed an act creating
an Industrial Welfare Commission, whose duties
are to carefully investigate the wages paid, con-
ditions of work, the hours, and general welfare
of the working women and children of California
Following this investigation, the commission,
after conferences with employers and employees,
may determine and fix the minimum wage for
women and minors in any Industry or occupation
in California. This minimum wage must be
based upon the cost of proper living.

In 1911 bills were passed controlling the hours
of women's and children's work, and it was
obvious that the work was less than half done
unless the other two minimum rules of industrial
life were also made to protect this weakest and
most helpless class; that is, that the safety and
the sanitary conditions in which women worked
should be controlled, and, wliat was more im-
portant, that they should be certain of a living
wage — a wage that insures for them the neces-
sary shelter, wholesome food and sufficient cloth-
ing. We know that the absence of this is the
cause of ill health, lack of strength for a good
motherhood, and frequently degeneracy an., rros-
titution for the weakest It has been s wn
many times by careful investigators that In the
older and more populous Industrial centers the
long periods of non-employment In seasonal in-
dustries wliich pay small wages are always ac-
companied by a large Influx sf girls to the ranks
of the prostitute because of actual want.

Our conditions in California are comparatively
good, yet from the statistics of the Bureau of
Labor we find that forty per cent of the women
and girls employed In our great state to-day re-
ceive less than $9.00 per week. This is much
better than the older industrial states, but the
fact remains that fully 16,000 women in this



ARGUMENT AOAINST ASSEMBLY CONSTI-
TUTIONAL AMENDMENT NO. 90.

First — ^There should be no legislation fixing a
minimum wage for either women or minors.

Women are fitted to perform, without previous
experience and study, but very few avocations.

In many cases a woman without experience is
helpless, while if given time and an opportunity
she readily becomes useful and a valuable worker.

To fix a wage arbitrarily, and say unless paid
this sum she shall not be employed at all, takes
from her the opportunity many times to any em-
ployment whatever and the help, encouragement
and assistance of those employers who otherwise
would give her a chance.

Second — There Is as much difference in the
capacity and ability of different women as of
different men — either may be in such condition,
mentally or physically, as to need great care and
attention before they can adapt themselves to
any kind or character of employment. These



people need especial care and well directed per-
severing effort to bring them to such condition
that they are of any value as help. They there-
fore should be encouraged, not discouraged, in
their endeavors to be self-supporting, or at least
partially so. A fixed minimum wage destroys
all their opportunity.

Third — These same reasons apply to minors,
with the additional reason that experience teaches
us that children should be taught how to work,
allowed to work, and encouraged to work, and
permitted to work, regardless of the matter of
any recompense whatever. Our cities are filled,
our streets are lined with men who will not work,
the great reason being because they were never
taught how to work, nor encouraged in any
work. To say that a child shall not work with-
out a fixed pay deprives the child of opportunities
which have always made the willing child of
to-day the future leading man of our country.

It is fundamentally wrong.

William B. Shearer,
Assemblyman First District.



ELECTION OF UNITED STATES SENATORS.

Attembly Constitutional Amendment 92 amending section 20 of article V of constitution.

Eliminates provisions of present section prohibiting governor from being elected United States
senator during his term of office, and instead provides that such senators shall be elected by the
people of the state in the manner provided by law.



Assembly Constitutional Amendment No. 92, a
resolution to propose to the people of the
State of California an amendment to the Con-
stitution of the State of California, by amend-
ing section 20 of article V thereof, relating
to the election of United States senators.
The legislature of the State of California at its
regular session commencing on the sixth day of
January, in the year one thousand nine hundred
and thirteen, two thirds of all the members elected
to each of the two houses of said legislature
voting in favor thereof, hereby proposes to the
qualified electors of the State of California, the
following amendment to the Constitution of the
State of California so that section 20 of article V
of said constitution shall read as follows:

PROPOSED LAW.

Section 20. United States senators shall be
elected by the people of the state In the manner
provided by law.

Section 20, article V, proposed to be amended,
now reads as follows:

EXISTING LAW.

Section 20. The governor aJiall not, during
his term of office, he elected a senator to the
senate of the United States.

ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF ASSEMBLY CON-
STITUTIONAL AMENDMENT NO. 92.
The object of the amendment is to make the
Constitution of California conform to the Con-



stitution of the United States In its provision
for the election of United States senator. The
United States Constitution provides that the sen-
ate shall be the judge of the election, return and
qualifications of its members. The present pro-
vision of the Constitution of California, providing
that the governor shall not, during his term of
ofl!ice, be elected as senator to the senate of the
United States, is, therefore, in confiict with the
Constitution of the United States, and this con-
flict should be removed by the adoption of the
proposed amendment.

The reason for the provision in the state con-
stitution, prohibiting the election of a governor of
the state to the United States senate, no longer
exists. When members of the United States sen-
ate were elected by the legislature, it might have
been possible for the governor to use undue in-
fluence on the legislature to secure his own elec-
tion to the United States senate, but now that
members of the United States senate are elected
by a direct vote of the people, there is no reason
for any restrictions upon the right of the people
to choose whom they see fit to fill the ofllce.

L. D. BOHNETT,

Assemblyman Forty-fourth District.

William B. Bush,
Assemblyman Twenty-sixth District.



CALLING CONVENTION FOR REVISION OF
CONSTITUTION.

Assennbly Concurrent Resolution 17.

Recommends that electors vote for or against a convention for revising the constitntion ; pro-
yides that if majority vote in favor thereof, the legislatwe shall at next session provide for election
of delegates to such convention and the holding thereof . state capitol within three months from date
of election calling the same, and that it shall contmue in session until it has completed the work of
revision and provided for submission thereof to electors.

sixth day of January, one thousand nine hundred
and thirteen, two thirds of all th3 members
elected to each house concurring, hereby recom-
mend that the electors of the state vote at the
next general election upon the proposition to call
a convention to revise the state constitution, such
proposition to read as follows :

Section 1. Two thirds of the members elected
to each branch of the legislature for the for-
tieth session of the legislature of the State of
California, commencing on the sixth day of Janu-
ary, one thousand nine hundred and thirteen, do

Digitized by VjOOQ IC _^



Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 17, a resolu-
tion recommending the calling of a convention
for the revision of the Constitution of the
State of California, recommending that the
electors of the state vote at the next general
election for the calling of a convention to re-
vise the constitution, and to provide the num-
ber and qualification, compensation, and man-
ner of electing the delegates to such convention.
Resolved by the assembly, the senate concur-
ring. That the legislature of the State of Cali-
fornia, at its regular session, commencing on the
Thirty



?reby recommend to the electors of the state
vote at the next general election for or against
convention for the purpose of revising the con-
i tut ion of the state. Such vote to be taken
r the reason that two thirds of the members
each branch of the legislature, at said regular
rtieth session, deem it necessary to revise such
nstitution. At such next general election the
Lllot used shall, in addition to the other names
id matters required by law to be printed there-
i, contain the words "For the convention." and
le words "Against the convention," written or
"inted thereon in a suitable place, with the ap-
•opriate space for each elector to designate his
tention with respect to such proposition. The
ection officers at each and every voting pre-
nct in the state shall make and ascertain, and
ake returns of the number of votes cast in
ivor of a convention, and the number of votes
ist against a convention, as aforesaid. In like
anner and with the same particularity as other
3tes are required by law to be counted and re-
irned, and an abstract thereof shall be trans-
iltted by each and every county clerk of the
^te, and each and every registrar of voters In
ay county, or city and county, of the state, to
le secretary of state, in the same manner, and
ithin th«^ same time, that votes for state officers
re now by law required to be transmitted.
Sec. 2. The secretary of state shall have
uthority to compel the mailing of such returns,
nd when received, shall prepare and lay before
le governor of the state a complete abstract of
le whole number of votes cast "for" and
against" a convention. If it shall appear from
le returns of the county clerks and registrar of
oters that a majority of the electors voting at
Lich general election on the proposition for a
onvention shall have voted in favor of calling
uch convention, it shall be the duty of the gov-
rnor to forthwith issue his proclamation, an-
ouncing the fact that such convention has been
ailed ; and thereupon, It shall be the duty of
he legislature at Its session next a'ter such
lection, to provide by law for the election of
elegates to such convention, and for the holding
hereof at the state capltol. Such convention to
aeet within three months from the date of the
lection calling It, and shall continue In session
ntil it shall have completed the work of revision,
nd provided for submitting the same to the
lectors for approval or rejection.

ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF ASSEMBLY CON-
CURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 17.

In his masterly and widely read work entitled
he "American Commonwealth," published in
893, James Bryce referred to the California con-
ititution as a conspicuous example of what a
tate constitution ought not to be. Since 1893,
irhat Mr. Bryce has predicted has proven true;
>ur constitution has been repeatedly amended,
intil now it has become a crazy-qullt of direct
egislatlon.

WTien the constitution was adopted the so-
tailed "sand lot" agitation was at Its height;
tear of the legislature and distrust of their rep-
resentatives. Inspired by the "sand lot" agitators,
nduced the people to adopt the constitution,
'limiting In every possible way the powers of
he state legislature and leaving It little author-
ty except to carry out by statutes the provisions
>f the constitution.'* The result was inevitable:
Jtatutes of vast Importance to the people passed
)y the legislature have necessarily been held un-
constitutional by the courts, and subsequent
legislatures have found It necessary to propose
imendments to the constitution to cure the de-
fects pointed out bv the courts : then, in most
?a«ps, nearly two years elansed before the neonle
ratified the amendments, and following those de-
lays, still later legislatures had to convene before
statutes desired bv the neonle three or four years
before could become effective.

At every session of the legislature since the
adoption of the constitution numerous amend-



ments have been proposed; in thirty-five years
eighty-two amendments have been adopted, nnd
twenty-two amendments are even now pendLig
before the people for adoption or rejection.

With the initiative and referendum firmly
grounded In our political system, we should have
a constitution Imposing as few restrictions upon
the legislature as possible. Under the initiative
the people may pass a law if the legislature
refuses to do so, and by means of the referendum
they may veto an objectionable measure passed
by the legislature. A code of direct legislation
such as our present constitution has become is
wholly unnecessary. Is difficult. If not Impossible,
for the ordinary citizen to understand, and by
making our system of state government so cimi-
bersome and complex It necessarily tends to
retard our material development.

The desirability of a brief, simple and clear
constitution Is admitted by all, but the argument
is frequently heard that the time is not oppor-
tune ; that the people are not ready to have this
blessing thrust upon them. The person advanc-
ing such an argument usually believes that the
people must be educated to his way of thinking
before they attempt to adopt a constitution for
their government. That argument can be, and
always will be, advanced by the man who feels
that the people as a whole are not competent to
know or say what they want. The answer to
the argument Is, let the people themselves de-
termine the question for themselves. If they
say they desire a new constitution they will elect
delegates to frame that constitution, and If that
constitution so framed Is acceptable to them,
they will adopt It, otherwise they will reject it

It is In the belief that a majority of the people
do desire a new constitution, and that having
expressed that desire will frame and adopt a



Online LibraryCalifornia Legislative Counsel Bureau California. Secretary of StateAmendments to the Constitution and proposed statutes : with arguments ... → online text (page 9 of 36)