California Gov. Jerry Brown is being taken to task by a fellow Democratic politician for vetoing a bill Tuesday that would have repealed the sales tax on tampons and sanitary napkins in the state.
Calif. Assembly member Cristina Garcia authored A.B. 1561 and saw the bill pass through the state legislature in August, only to have the progressive governor block progress on what she said is a women's health issue.
"Jerry Brown please #mansplain why it's ok to balance the budget on women's backs?" Garcia wrote on Facebook shortly after Brown vetoed the bill. "He vetoed #AB1561, the unfair #tampontax continues. Email him and give him a call and let him know that your #period is not a luxury. #wrongsideofhistory. I will keep pushing until we get it done."
The bill would have followed the example of New York's Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who recently moved to kill the state sales tax on female hygiene products, including sanitary napkins, tampons, menstrual sponges and menstrual cups. Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey and Pennsylvania have also passed similar initiatives.
Brown excused his move by explaining the state relies on the $300 million in revenue from women's hygienic products. But judging from Garcia's passion about abolishing the tampon tax, the fight will continue."Fundamentally this is about gender equity and leveling the field," Garcia had said in a statement after the bill was approved by the Assembly in August. "Every month, for 40 years of our lives, we are taxed for being born women. Every month of our adult life we are taxed for our biology. Every month we are told our periods are a luxury, while also being told they are something to be ashamed of and we must hide. Let me be clear, on biology, periods are not luxuries and they are definitely not something women should be ashamed of, period!"