Wicks, a Democrat in the California State Assembly, was on maternity leave when some key pieces of legislation regarding family leave and affordable housing came up, that she desperately wanted to see passed.
Wicks had given birth to her immunocompromised daughter, Elly, at the end of July, and had applied to the House Speaker, Anthony Rendon, to vote remotely. The request was denied.
Having recently given birth to a baby with jaundice wasn’t deemed a sufficient reason for casting a vote remotely, a privilege that had been granted to other COVID-19 “high-risk” members.
“My daughter’s immune system is basically nonexistent,” Wicks said. “But I was told that maternity leave didn’t qualify for in-proxy voting.”
House Speaker Anthony Rendon, a fellow Democrat, was forced to apologise to Wicks for not considering her situation fully.