California: Look, Ma, No Teeth

After failing in two previous efforts to persuade California's Democratic-controlled assembly to pass a code of ethics that would prohibit conflicts of interest for both legislators and state employees, Republican Assemblyman Frank Lanterman of Los Angeles last week brought up the code proposal for "the third and last time." By this time he had changed the bill so as to make certain it would hurt no one. "This is simply a statement of our good intentions," said Lanterman, "and carries no penalty." The assembly piously approved the measure by a vote of 66 to 5.

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