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Democrats Lose Supermajority With Calderon's Leave of Absence

Rich Pedroncelli / AP

File Photo: State Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, left, holds a brief news conference during his first appearance at the Capitol after FBI investigators raided his offices in Sacramento, Calif.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP

Calderon’s decision came in the face of a threatened suspension by his fellow Democrats.

Senate Leader Darrell Steinberg had given Calderon a week – from last Monday – to either resign, to take a leave of absence, or face a suspension vote on the Senate floor.  

Sunday evening, Calderon issued a statement saying that this is not a resignation, because he still will have his day in court. But because of all the materials he has to review, he expects to be absent until the end of the session in August.  

And because he’s termed out, that in effect means that Ron Calderon has cast his final vote in the state Senate.

Calderon is the second Senate Democrat in the last week to take a leave of absence. Democrats have now lost their two-thirds supermajority, meaning they now need at least one Republican to raise taxes and fees, pass urgency legislation or send ballot measures to voters.

Last week, Sen. Rod Wright (D-Los Angeles) turned in his request for a leave of absence after being convicted of perjury and voter fraud. Some Republicans are expected to again push for Wright's suspension or expulsion.  

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