Senate chief Kevin de Leon: ‘Nothing unseemly’ is going on here

Allegations of “cronyism” have gotten under Senate leader Kevin de Leon’s skin.

He didn’t like how critics of former senator Isadore Hall – the subject of heated Senate debate for ALRB confirmation – said that Hall’s appointment reeked of cronyism.

“The word cronyism is highly misplaced at this moment,” de Leon said on the Senate floor April 20.

“It is not being used properly. It gives that perception to the larger public that something unseemly is happening,” he said.

For emphasis, de Leon added, “Nothing unseemly is happening in this body.”

David Taub of GV Wire picked up de Leon’s comments, along with those of other senators on both sides of the discussion. He published video clips of various lawmakers making their remarks.

Blocked investigations of unseemliness

De Leon dismissed complaints by other senators that Isadore Hall had intimidated and threatened witnesses about to testify against his nomination to the ALRB. Senator Andy Vidak (R) cited several witnesses to Hall’s threats – a crime in California – and asked the Rules Committee and Ethics Committee to investigate.

De Leon quashed any investigation. “It’s not our practice to review or investigate bar room conversations,” he said in the Los Angeles Times.

Los Angeles Times denounced Hall appointment as ‘shameful’ and a ‘loathsome’ practice

Earlier, the Los Angeles Times editorial board denounced the appointment of Isadore Hall – who has no knowledge of or experience with agricultural labor or other rural issues – to the ALRB.

In a March 3 editorial titled, “California’s shameful patronage system in action,” the LA Times editors said of Hall’s appointment, “And so it goes in one of the more loathsome practices in state politics: lawmakers approving the appointments of their former friends and colleagues to the few board seats that pay real money,”