As California State Sen. Scott Wiener’s real estate deregulation bill SB 50 wends its way through legislative committees in Sacramento, housing justice and rent control advocates affiliated with Housing Is A Human Right (HHR) today issued a new campaign mailer raising alarm about Wiener’s deep financial ties to the real estate industry — as well as his flawed legislation. HHR is the housing advocacy division of AIDS Healthcare Foundation.
(Read the Housing Is A Human Right special report: “Selling Out California: Scott Wiener’s Money Ties to Big Real Estate.”)
The California State Senate Governance and Finance Committee voted today 5 to 0 (with two absences) to advance Wiener’s troubling, trickle-down housing bill. Housing Is A Human Right will continue to fight the legislation.
“The Man from Real Estate” mailer points out that Wiener, a one-time San Francisco supervisor who has long relied on vast amounts of campaign cash from luxury-housing developers and other real estate players to win elections and stay in power, that:
“In 2016, as he ran for the state senate, Scott Wiener hauled in nearly 700 donations from developers, real estate attorneys, brokers, lobbyists, architects, and other real estate insiders, totaling $574,276.”
The mailer also notes the devastating impact that SB 50 would have if enacted into law, including the facts that the bill would make California’s housing affordability crisis worse and would:
- Generate billions of dollars in profit for the real estate players who are Wiener’s political patrons.
- Fuel a luxury-housing building boom in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and other municipalities.
- Would therefore worsen gentrification and displacement crises in California, particularly in working- and middle-class communities of color.
According to the California Secretary of State’s Campaign Finance website, for his entire 2016 senate campaign (and/or in year 2016), Wiener raised a total of $1.899 million—including the $574,246 from various real estate stakeholders. The $574,246 raised from the real estate industry represent more than one-third of his total campaign fundraising that year.
By comparison, his senate race opponent Jane Kim, also a former San Francisco Supervisor, raised $1.462 million. WITHOUT the $574,246 Wiener raised from real estate concerns, he would have raised $134,724 LESS than Kim, whom he beat by just 8,146 votes.
So far, for his 2020 reelection bid, Wiener has hauled in a prodigious $153,816 from the real estate industry, according to state records.
Earlier this year, HHR released a special report titled “Selling Out California: Scott Wiener Money Ties to Big Real Estate.”
HHR urges California Governor Gavin Newsom and state legislators to stop Wiener’s fundamentally flawed, real estate deregulation bill. Instead, they should pass legislation that implements the “3 Ps”: protect tenants; preserve existing affordable housing; and produce truly affordable housing. It’s the most logical, humane, and urgent way to address California’s housing affordability crisis.