A rule of thumb: when launching a boycott, make sure there's at least a chance your efforts will have the intended result. Or, you know, at least be noticed.
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to end their boycott of 30 states that had passed "anti-LGBTQ" laws and abortion restrictions, after it turned out those states didn't care.
It all started back in 2016 when the Bay Area city passed an ordinance, called Title 12X, banning city-funded travel to more than two-dozen GOP-controlled states they claimed had passed anti-LGBTQ legislation following the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court decision. The boycott was later expanded to include states that enacted abortion restrictions and voter integrity laws. The measure would supposedly highlight San Francisco's commitment to infanticide, voter fraud, and people who dress up like dogs in bondage gear and parade themselves in front of children, all while leaving bigoted red states crying into their Chick-fil-A sweet tea over the loss of San Fran's business.
But - shocking to absolutely no one - the measure didn’t actually hurt the red states San Fran was trying to “boycott.” As a matter of fact, it turns out San Franciscans were the only ones harmed by the policy, and no one else even noticed.
The board finally voted to nix the boycott after a 16-page review from the City Administrator’s Office that stated the boycott “has created additional administrative burden for city staff and vendors and unintended consequences for San Francisco citizens, such as limiting enrichment and developmental opportunities.” Meanwhile, the city “was not able to find concrete evidence suggesting 12X has influenced other states’ economies or LGBTQ, reproductive, or voting rights.”
Facing a $728 million budget deficit over the next two years, even left-leaning city supervisors said during recent meetings they were worried the boycott would hurt the city’s already expensive and burdensome contracting process, as the review also found that “a loss in competition is likely to increase the city's contracting costs by 10-20% annually. These costs could continue to increase and compound overtime as the city's potential contractor pool shrinks if the list of banned states grows.”
"It’s not achieving the goal we want to achieve,” said Supervisor Rafael Mandelman, who led the effort to repeal the boycott. “It is making our government less efficient."
Most of the board apparently agreed with Mandelman, voting 7-4 to scrap the ban.
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