In CA, applicants had to pass all the other qualifications - including the background - in order to take the test. Among those otherwise qualified applicants the pass rate for that test has never been anywhere near 100%.
So ditching that requirement could potentially cause problems later on when a trainee who does manage to accumulate their hours ends up getting shafted at the end of the process due to being unable to pass the test.
I guess it's good for some of the sweatshop operators but it could actually turn out to work against the trainees who can actually pass the test.
Nevermind. At first glance it looked like the cert gen test takers were able to pass their more difficult exam at a higher rate. But it looks like the pass rate over the four years is 65% for both cert res and cert gen.