In the wake of several mailers lauding the work of state Sen. Tom Torlakson, D-Antioch, the Morongo Band of Mission Indians has sent out a flyer in the district of Assemblyman Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord.
The letter-sized, full-color mailer provides DeSaulnier’s phone number and urges residents to call and ask the legislator to support the tribe’s pending gaming compact. The Assembly is set to vote on six gaming compacts with Indian tribes.
“Take a stand for our schools!” it reads. “Call Assembly Member Mark DeSaulnier at 925-372-7990 and tell him to vote yes on AB266/SB174.” (In an ironic twist, the mailer also says, “Don’t let special interests stand in the way.” It’s interesting how “special interests” always apply to the other guy.)
DeSaulnier has been tepid, at best, about the compacts.
He has strong ties to labor unions, which oppose most of the compacts on the grounds that they roll back workers’ rights to organize. The tribes vigorously deny the charge, saying the unions have the same the rights to organize under the new compacts as they do under the existing ones.
The Concord lawmaker doesn’t like the fact that tribes are allowed to self-audit under the compacts.
And he’s personally queasy about the spread of gambling. His late father, a judge who committed suicide after being accused of corruption, suffered from a gambling addiction.
Add all DeSaulnier’s concerns together and it doesn’t sounds like a vote worth gambling on.