Amanda Renteria's 21st Century California Bill of Rights

For generations, people have come to California in search of a better life. We’ve always taken pride in being on the frontiers of change in America, which is why we’re so open to fresh faces and new ideas.

Amanda believes that it’s time to make a bold new commitment to the basic rights of every person living here. The core of her policy platform is called the 21st Century California Bill of Rights. 

It describes what our state needs to put in place to ensure the safety, inclusion, and prosperity of every Californian. Framing these issues as fundamental rights is an important step. Beyond the advocacy of any particular policy, it sets a broader and longer lasting standard that the government will be required to achieve.

Amanda believes that every Californian has a right to:

1. Elected leaders who work only for the people

2. Safety in our homes, workplaces, and communities (including freedom from harassment and discrimination)

3. Clean air and water, no matter where we live

4. Safe and affordable housing

5. Quality, affordable health care

6. An education that prepares every child for the 21st century economy

The truth is that most of the easy problems have been solved already. Crafting policies to address the remaining challenges facing such a large and diverse state as ours will require a Governor who possesses a rare combination of life experience, subject matter knowledge, and coalition building skills.

Amanda has the broadest and deepest policy-making experience of any candidate in the Governor’s race. From economics to agriculture, she has worked at the highest levels of policy-making in the U.S. Senate. As a top Senate staffer, she’s been tested in high stakes, high stress situations like responding to the 2008 financial crisis and passing the Affordable Care Act.

Amanda has also done the work. Early in her career, she worked as a high school teacher in the Central Valley and as a Budget Analyst for the City of San Jose. Most recently, she served as the Chief of Operations at the California Department of Justice, where she managed 1,000 people and a budget of $850 million.

California can remain on the frontiers of change in America, but it requires a Governor who is a skilled, passionate, and sincere public servant.

A Higher Standard for Elected Leaders

Under Amanda’s 21st Century Bill of Rights, every Californian will have the right to elected officials who work only for the people.

Amanda’s perspective on this is pretty simple. Government works best when public servants do the people’s business with humility, enthusiasm, and skill. From Washington to Sacramento, we run into problems when politicians are allowed to buy their way into office and use their power for personal benefit.

Under this pillar of the Bill of Rights, Amanda’s initial priorities as Governor will be to pass a series of new laws to:

1. Prevent statewide elected officials from running businesses while in office

2. Reduce conflicts of interest by requiring elected officials to place their assets in a blind trust

3. Prohibit campaign fundraising until six months before an election

4. End all lobbyist gifts to elected officials

5. Prohibit elected officials from engaging in sexual relationships with anyone who works under their supervision

Amanda has lived up to the highest ethical standards throughout her career in public service. She stepped down from her role as Chief of Operations at the California Department of Justice before she began campaigning. And she has never engaged in a sexual relationship with a subordinate. Amanda's Administration will set a higher standard for public servants and foster an environment where all employees are safe and empowered to do their job. 

Every Californian Deserves Safe, Affordable Housing

Under Amanda’s 21st Century Bill of Rights, every Californian will have a right to safe and affordable housing. California is facing a homelessness crisis and a dire shortage of affordable housing. These problems will not be fixed quickly or easily. 

Under this pillar of the Bill of Rights, Amanda’s initial priorities as Governor will be to:

1. Declare homelessness a State of Emergency in our hardest hit cities in order to unlock new tools for immediately addressing homelessness

2. Support passage of this year’s $4 billion housing bond, which will provide additional funds for low income housing and help to cover the cost of home loans for veterans

3. Repeal Costa-Hawkins, which prevents local communities from making their own decisions on rent control

4. Expand tax credits and housing assistance for low income and middle class families

5. Partner with cities and counties to solicit federal funds for housing development

Housing policy is the result of a complex interplay between local, state, and federal laws. Amanda’s experience working across these levels will make her the right person to tackle this crisis. 

Amanda has worked directly with cities and counties on economic development, utilizing federal grants and partnerships to improve conditions in local areas. Her experience working with policies such as New Market Tax Credits, Community Development Financial Institutions, and Opportunity Zones will be critical as California tackles its housing crisis.

After earning her Master’s degree in business at Harvard, Amanda worked as a Special Consultant and Budget Analyst for the City of San Jose. In this role, she oversaw a $2 billion budgeting process for three city departments and managed a community program that was partially funded by Redevelopment Agency resources.

In the US Senate, Amanda’s job as an economic policy advisor included the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. Her work on housing tax policy through the Senate Finance

Committee will also be critical as California grapples with the recently passed tax reform bill and its unique impact on Californians.

California Can Lead on Health Care for All

Under Amanda’s 21st Century Bill of Rights, every Californian will have a right to quality, affordable healthcare. When it comes to healthcare, California has a unique opportunity to lead the nation in showing what is possible. That’s why Amanda’s main priority under this pillar of the Bill of Rights is to implement a single payer healthcare law for California.

Single payer healthcare is exciting, and will profoundly change the lives of all Californians for the better. At the same time, no one should underestimate how big of a challenge this will be, both technically and politically. During her first 100 days in office, Amanda will launch a select committee of unbiased experts to develop a single payer implementation plan that is economically viable and integrated with federal law. This committee will craft a plan that addresses the issues, stakeholders, and financing needed for implementation. The committee will actively seek public input and communicate regularly about its proceedings, with final recommendations presented to the public within 12 months.

Amanda is the most qualified gubernatorial candidate to lead this effort. As a Chief of Staff in the US Senate, she was directly involved in the negotiation and passage of our nation’s most complex legislation. This included direct involvement in the Affordable Care Act on the provisions related to mental health, substance abuse prevention, women’s preventive health, and maternity care

The ACA needed support from several Senate moderates to pass and clearly did not go as far as many Californians would have liked. But the knowledge gained from those analyses and negotiations can be leveraged to help Californians take the next step toward a thoughtfully designed single payer model. Healthcare reform is vitally important and incredibly complex. California deserves a Governor who has real experience crafting similar policies at the highest levels of government.

Safety in Homes, Workplaces, and Communities

Under Amanda’s 21st Century Bill of Rights, every Californian will have a right to safety in their homes, workplaces, and communities. This includes freedom from harassment and discrimination.

Amanda recently stepped down from her role as Chief of Operations at the California Department of Justice in order to run for Governor. During Amanda's time at DOJ, they locked up human traffickers, cracked down on polluters, fought for women’s healthcare, shielded seniors from Medi-Cal fraud, and secured millions in student refunds from for-profit colleges. 

Unfortunately, Californians have come under attack from a range of threats every day. They deserve a Governor who is committed to addressing these problems. Under this pillar of the Bill of Rights, Amanda’s initial priorities as Governor will be to:

1. Take every legal step we can to stop the deportation of Dreamers and tearing more families apart

2. End mass incarceration and reinvest the savings in education and jobs programs in low income communities

3. Stop sexual harassment and predatory behavior by championing best practices in our universities and workplaces

4. Continue to lead the country in constitutionally acceptable gun control measures 

Amanda’s policies around sexual assault, harassment, and misconduct are an important part of this pillar. As a #MeToo survivor, Amanda stands out for her commitment to address these problems and hold elected officials accountable for their misbehavior. 

Sexual misconduct and harassment received little attention in the Governor's race until Amanda succeeded in making them major campaign issues. At a time when the State Capitol is struggling to fix these problems, it is important that voters consider each candidate's track record when choosing their next Governor.

Amanda believes that the only way to truly close the door on sexual misconduct is to hold all bad actors accountable. We need to elect leaders who don't have a track record of sexual encounters with their employees, and we need to elect people who will passionately champion policies to protect everyone in the workplace. Amanda has called on Lieutenant Governor Newsom to step down from his post due to his well documented history of sexual encounters with a subordinate- behaviors that are considered so inappropriate that they've been banned for elected officials in the U.S. House of Representatives. Amanda's plan for combating sexual misconduct in government is robust, and was a core focus of her early communications efforts. 

Every Californian should be able to pursue their career without having to fend off sexual advances from people in positions of power. They should all have the ability to confidentially seek help from a trustworthy source if they want to. Bad actors deserve due process, but there should be real consequences for those who try to abuse their power.

Amanda will do what’s needed to end these problems once and for all.

Access to Clean Air & Water is a Basic Right

Under Amanda’s 21st Century Bill of Rights, every Californian will have a right to clean air and water, no matter where they live.

Amanda was born and raised in a small farming town in the agriculturally rich Central Valley of California. She grew up knowing that the local businesses and communities depended on a stable climate and reliable sources of water for their very existence. At the same time, she grew up watching untold numbers of people struggling with serious health problems as a result of the nation’s worst pollution. Some of the small towns near there are discovering their drinking water is tainted, while others have run out of well water completely. That’s why the drive to provide every Californian with clean air and water is deeply personal for her.

Under this pillar of the Bill of Rights, Amanda’s initial priorities as Governor will be to:

1. Ban fracking and dumping of oil wastewater into unlined pits

2. Enable testing of local water quality, shut down facilities that contaminate groundwater, and force the polluters to pay for addressing it

3. End the sale of gas-powered cars in California by 2030

4. Continue to fund the Bureau of Environmental Justice and create metrics to track successful programs addressing our most polluted regions

These efforts are not just the right thing to do. They’re also a smart investment. The World Health Organization has stated that “When air quality improves, health costs from air pollution related diseases shrink, worker productivity expands and life expectancy grows.”

Amanda is the right person to get this done. During her tenure in the United States Senate, Amanda helped to create a slate of clean-energy production incentives that seeded the alternative energy industry when it needed it most. Amanda also took part in the negotiations that improved fuel efficiency standards for vehicles and created a greener, more innovative auto industry. These policies have helped to move our state further toward renewable energy sources and significantly reduced our state’s reliance on fossil fuels.

While serving as National Political Director during the 2016 election cycle, Amanda went to Flint, Michigan to bring awareness to that under-served community’s lead poisoning water crisis. Her advocacy efforts helped to attract national media attention and generated resources for important new community programs. These efforts resulted in ongoing state and federal actions to rectify wrong-doing, as well as long-term health monitoring for affected families.

As the Chief of Operations for California’s Department of Justice, Amanda helped to establish the Bureau of Environmental Justice. The mission of this new bureau is to “protect people and communities that endure a disproportionate share of environmental pollution and public health hazards” through more focused oversight, investigation, and enforcement of state laws.

Every Child Deserves a 21st Century Education

Under Amanda’s 21 st Century Bill of Rights, all kids in California will have a right to an education that prepares them for the 21st century economy.

Amanda grew up in an under-resourced agricultural community in the Central Valley. The proud daughter of farmworkers, she went on to earn degrees from Stanford and Harvard through a combination of student loans, work study jobs, and athletic scholarships.

Life experiences make a difference. From her own experiences, Amanda knows that a good education can change the life of a family or community. She also knows how big the educational divide has become in some communities. This is why Amanda began her career in public service as a high school Math and Economics teacher in her hometown nearly two decades ago. It’s why both of her sisters became educators, too.

Under this pillar of the Bill of Rights, Amanda’s initial priorities as Governor will be to:

1. Make high quality preschool programs available to all families

2. Move from STEM to STEAM to include the important role of the arts in every elementary school

3. Require every high school student to take a computer science/coding class

4. Create collaborative partnerships with job creators and academic institutions so that graduates of high schools, community colleges, and four year universities have the skils needed for job opportunities

5. End mass incarceration and shift those resources from prisons to classrooms

California has been leaving untold numbers of talented and deserving kids behind. That will change when Amanda is Governor.

Time to Act #MeToo #NoMore #TimesUp

As Governor, I pledge to stand up to the Trump Administration as they roll back civil rights for survivors. 

I will sign legislation preserving Obama-era Title IX protections in California.

I will support the following package of bills: AB 1870, SB 1038, SB 224, SB 1300. 

Lastly, I will be committed to cleaning up Sacramento by working with the legislature to institute grievance procedures for all state offices, so survivors know there’s a process in place to help.

Technology, Transparency, & Accountability

As Governor, I'll make sure Californian's have a government that can restore public trust. We can do that by improving transparency and accountability by using technology. I will work toward a fairer system that includes:

1. Electronic recording in all courtrooms
2. E-filing in our state courts
3. Learning systems that use data and best practices to improve our system

We can ensure fairness and justice in our courts.