- Common Good – Common Ground – Common Sense
- Pro-Life for the Whole Life
- Social Justice
- Freedom of Religion
- Localized Government
- Human Dignity
Desmond Silveira is the 2018 candidate for California governor who supports the common good by finding common ground across California’s diverse citizenry, and using common sense. He is a member of the American Solidarity Party but is running in the gubernatorial race as an independent. Desmond is pro-life, pro-family, pro-marriage, and supports freedom of religion from needless government intrusion. He is for social justice, pro-community, pro-human-dignity, pro-environment, and pro-peace. Last but not least, he supports localized government where communities can decide for themselves instead of being forced to accept state or federal values and decisions.
A More Representative State Legislature
A Lower Population per Representative
Among the states, California has the highest population per representative, and thus the lowest representation per person, by a large degree. In California, each Assembly Member represents 465,674 people. In the second least representative state, Texas, each lower house legislator represents 167,637 people, and the average among all states is 56,948 people per representative.
For each of the 80 State Assembly districts, elect five Assembly Members for a total of 400 Assembly Members in the state. This will reduce the representation ratio to 93,135 people per representative. Then in the redistricting cycle after the 2030 U.S. Census, increase the number of State Assembly districts to 160, each still with five Assembly Members.
Legislative Elections by Ranked Choice Voting (STV)
Minorities shouldn’t be deprived of representation.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Reynolds v. Sims made the bicameral system that our California legislature is modeled on obsolete, yet the bicameral system still exists. Replace it with a unicameral legislature to eliminate redundancy. A unicameral legislature has worked well for Nebraska. Keep the State Assembly with its 80 districts and eliminate the State Senate.
Conversion of Sitting State Senators
Those State Senators that are in the midst of their terms during the conversion would get automatically seated as State Assembly Members.
This is what a unicameral, five-member district, STV-elected legislature would look like in a simulated election based on the 2020 primary election: CA State Assembly with 5-Member District by STV
A Greater Voice for Minorities
Lower Barriers to Political Party Recognition
Currently at least 0.33% of the voter registrations need to be for a political body for it to qualify as a political party. California currently has 24,819,858 registered voters. That amounts to 72,789 registrations needed. I advocate for lowering the requirement to 0.05%, which would translate to 12,410 registrations needed and open the door for qualification of new political parties. This would likely result in one or two more parties in addition to the current six.
Home Rule Election Methods
Currently ranked choice voting is only available to charter cities within California. Legislation like SB-212 would extend this option to general law cities as well; this bill passed both the State Assembly and State Senate by an overwhelming margin with cross-partisan support. However, Governor Newsom vetoed the bill so that it was never enacted. I would push to reconsider such legislation and demand that Governor Newsom respects the will of the people.
Statewide Executive Elections by Approval Voting (AV)
Our executive leadership should represent all constituents.
Support for the Work of the Citizens Redistricting Commission
Keep gerrymandering out of California.
Public Financing of Elections
Make big money special interests less important to political candidates by sending voters “democracy vouchers” to donate to local political candidates of their choice, similarly to how Seattle introduced public financing: https://www.vox.com/2018/11/5/17058970/seattle-democracy-vouchers
Electronically counted, paper-backed ballot counting process built on open source blockchain voting for verifiable secret ballots.
- Introduce a California Democracy Index with criteria similar to the EIU Democracy Index.
- Allow petition gathering to be conducted electronically.
- Electoral College electors to be selected proportionally to the candidates’ vote within our state of California for the presidential election. For example, if 70% of voters vote for Party A, 25% for Party B, and 5% for Party C, then those respective percentages would be applied to California’s 54 allotted electors, resulting in 38 electors for Party A, 13 for Party B, and 3 for Party C (using a rounding rule to ensure integers add up to the total electors allotted). This is different from the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, as it retains the political will of California voters instead of delegating it to the nation as a whole. Proportional allocation would lead to more campaigning in our state by presidential candidates and a larger voice for Californians.
Desmond Silveira is a professional software engineer, a successful small business owner (real estate), a husband, and a father of eight children. Born in Zambia and of Indian (Goan) descent, he has lived in southern California since he was one-year-old. After earning his Bachelor of Science in computer science from California Polytechnic University, Pomona, Desmond has worked at various companies and organizations including GE, JPL, YellowPages.com, Los Angeles Times, and Disney. Desmond has been involved at different times with various ministries at his parish including CCD, Familia, and Cub Scouts. In his free time, Desmond enjoys playing games with his kids.