Dan Walters

Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
Published: Monday, Feb. 3, 2014 – 12:00 am
Last Modified: Monday, Feb. 3, 2014 – 12:06 am

The state Senate’s disparate treatment of two Democratic senators under fire for their political ethics continues an erratic, irrational pattern.

When it was revealed that Sen. Ron Calderon was under federal investigation for financial dealings, Senate leaders, especially President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, were sharply critical and stripped him of committee positions.

But when Sen. Rod Wright was convicted of eight felony charges, including perjury, for concealing that his true residence was outside his Southern California district, Steinberg et al. were sympathetic.

Steinberg contended, with technical legal reasoning, that Wright wasn’t officially guilty yet because the judge had yet to affirm the verdict.

Wright voluntarily stepped down from his committee chairmanships, but that was it.

“I evaluate each situation on its merits,” Steinberg said. “The underlying allegations (on Calderon) go to the very heart of what we do inside of these chambers, and inside this Capitol.”

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