Kiley Calls on CA Lawmakers to Ensure Direct Election of Feinstein Successor

Today, Representative Kiley gave a floor speech calling on California lawmakers to act immediately to assure Dianne Feinstein’s successor will be chosen by voters, regardless of whether she serves out her term or leaves office before then. This will allow Senator Feinstein to make a decision unburdened by the political pressures that the prospect of a gubernatorial appointment is generating. 

“Californians should have the sole right to choose their representatives. Gubernatorial appointments are a vestige of a bygone era that has disenfranchised millions of Americans and been subject to repeated abuse.” – Congressman Kevin Kiley (R-Calif.)

Background: Rep. Kiley has introduced a long-term nationwide solution in his proposed constitutional amendment requiring the election of U.S. Senators in the event of a vacancy. Rep. Kiley’s constitutional amendment would require a special election to fill a vacated Senate seat, putting an end to the patchwork of appointment procedures that have been implemented since the adoption of the Seventeenth Amendment. While this long-term solution is under consideration, Rep. Kiley is urging the California Legislature pass a bill to immediately ensure that voters have the sole power to choose their Senator in the event of a vacancy. You can read more on Rep. Kiley’s proposed constitutional amendment here and watch his floor speech here.

Although Senator Feinstein has committed to serving out the remainder of her term, members of her own political party are attempting to influence her decision to benefit their favored candidates running to succeed her and as Governor Newsom continues to float potential replacement appointments like Oprah Winfrey. The adoption of Rep. Kiley’s constitutional amendment coupled with a state legislative solution would ensure that California voters have the sole power to choose their Senator regardless of if or when a vacancy may arise.

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