Summary of Shiroma’s disastrous Senate confirmation hearing
More information on Genevieve Shiroma’s disastrous performance before her California Senate Rules Committee confirmation hearing on June 20. We’ll have the transcripts soon:
• Shiroma denied any bias toward the UFW, but none of the senators believed her. Republicans attacked Shiroma – and Democrats praised her – for her UFW bias.
• Shiroma admitted everything that Pick Justice said about her long-term political and financial relationship with UFW lobbyist Richie Ross. Republicans attacked her for it, and Democrats praised her for it.
• Senator Mitchell said she strongly supported Shiroma, but admitted that she didn’t even know Shiroma’s name.
• Many members of the public, including farmworkers and an ALRB staffer, showed up to tell senators their opposition to Shiroma’s reappointment.
• Not a single farmworker or member of the public spoke in Shiroma’s defense.
• Shiroma tried to divert attention away from her own biases and failures by attacking Anthony Raimondo – the lawyer for farm labor leader Silvia Lopez – even as Lopez was laying in a hospital bed that day to donate her kidney.
• Shiroma couldn’t explain why ALRB spent 40% of its budget to target a single farmworker and its employees who voted to de-certify the UFW: “I don’t know where those numbers came from,” she said.
• “I haven’t been able to verify those numbers” pertaining to 40% of ALRB budget being spent to target Gerawan Farming and its workers, Shiroma told Senators, even though she had plenty of figures to make herself look good.
• An ALRB staffer attended the hearing and courageously spoke up – in public and in front of Shiroma, ALRB Chairman Gould and others – to accuse Shiroma and the Board of being biased toward the UFW and for pressuring and intimidating ALRB staffers who opposed that bias.
• Shiroma could not explain why she did not provide senators – as agreed beforehand – to prove that her ALRB decisions were not biased.
• Shiroma stammered and rambled about the lack of transparency on the ALRB. She tried to act surprised that ALRB had not published the minutes of its meetings since April 2015. That led to a senator to chastise her: “When you’re not even publishing minutes for over a year, that’s not transparency.”
• Shiroma gave herself away when she had to defend herself for being honest, telling senators, “I am absolutely an honorable person.”