California Democrats currently have super majorities (over 2/3 in each house), and hold that super-majority in the state Senate by two seats. Democratic state Senator Ron Calderon was indicted for allegedly taking $100,000 in bribes. His seat is likely safe for Democrats, but would temporarily lower their numbers in the State Senate, though keep it above the threshold for a supermajority. This is why the state Senate President Steinberg has called on Calderon to resign or “take a leave of absence“.
Perhaps because it would deny the Democrats of 2/3 of the forty state Senate seats, thus allowing the Republicans to block what few actions that still require a 2/3 majority (the barrier for passing budges was lowered to 50% recently, thus denying the Republicans, a minority in the state Senate since 1970, any power to block it)?
Both state Senators have taken a “paid leave of absence” which means they retain their paycheck without having to actually do their duty as legislators AND are able to come back anytime they want if the Democrats really need those extra votes. The “loss” of the supermajority is superficial.
It is, as it always has been, about protecting their power, and nothing more…