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Proposition 22 Ruled Unconstitutional in California

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Voters passed a ballot initiative in the 2020 Election that would allow ridesharing companies like Uber to keep their drivers as independent contractors. A judge overruled the decision of California’s voters in a controversial ruling earlier this week and declared the ballot initiative ‘unconstitutional’. 

Millions of dollars were contributed into the election to effect the outcome of the ballot initiative. It is estimated that hundreds of millions of dollars were spent in favor of passing this ballot initiative and it passed with more than 58% of the vote. 

The ruling was immediately appealed by the ‘Protect App-Based Drivers and Services Coalition’ and the effects of Proposition 22 will remain active until the appeal process is completed. This court ruling will be extremely unpopular in California, especially since more than 9 million people supported the initiative during the recent election. 

Uber and Lyft are two examples of very popular transportation methods within the state of California. If Proposition 22 is successfully struck down by the courts in California, there’s a fairly good chance that the companies would be forced to shut down within California’s jurisdiction. 

The appeal process could take months which will ultimately buy some time for California freelancers and independent contractors that are currently working through an app-based driving app like Uber or Lyft. 

This has been a contentious and controversial topic for many months, even back when Assembly Bill 5 was originally signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom. AB-5 was a highly-unpopular piece of legislation because it virtually struck down the entire California gig economy. There have been many exemptions added to the legislation but the ballot initiative was the main exception because it allowed ridesharing companies to overrule AB-5’s restrictions and allowed drivers to keep working as independent contractors. 

More than 9 million people supported California Proposition 22, nearly 18% more than those who opposed it. A California judge decided to strike the law down and went against the decision that Californian voters made back on November 3rd. California voters have every reason to be angry with their legal system, especially since it wasn’t even a close race on Proposition 22. It was a landslide victory in favor of Proposition 22 and now it is being attacked once again. 

Only time will tell if the appeal is successful. One thing is for certain, Californians are angry with the legal establishment in their state and that’s one of the reasons that the current Governor of California is desperately campaigning across the state to try and stay in office during his upcoming recall election set to take place on September 14th. 

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