California Democrats turn up pressure on gig economy


The battle between California lawmakers and ridesharing companies such as Uber and Lyft heated up Wednesday as Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon offered harsh words laced with expletives for businesses in the gig economy.

“They use a lot of really cute words basically to describe the same old (expletive) that they’ve been doing for a really long time. People keep acting like they’ve invented new things — it’s the same old thing.

It’s about corporations trying to oppress workers,” Rendon, a Democrat, said to cheers at a rally on the Capitol steps. “When you hear about folks talking about the new economy, the gig economy, the innovation economy, it’s (expletive) feudalism, all over again.”

His remarks came after a Senate committee advanced legislation that would limit when certain companies can label workers as “independent contractors.” The proposal by Democratic Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez of San Diego, who boasts strong union backing, uses a standard for classifying employees set by the state Supreme Court last year.

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