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THE NOONER for May 21, 2012
TWEET DU JOUR: @MattRexroad - "Anyone else think IE Treasurers are all waiting until @scottlay sends out the Nooner today. Look for lots of reports. No news until Monday."
CONTEST: Over 200 folks have entered the contest, and I guess I'm really going to have to dole out $175 in prizes. After Marc Lifsher's story yesterday on Amazon, I hope our top three opt for local gift certificates.
Here is your unique link to the contest:
Remember, you can vote or change your votes any time through 8pm PDT tomorrow (Tuesday), which is exactly two weeks before the polls close in California.
Good morning, I'm back in Davis after a wonderful weekend trip to Albion and Mendocino and the wonderful Anderson Valley Pinot Noir festival. If you've never been up there, you're missing one of the best spots in California. On second and a selfish thought, it's a miserable place and nobody should go there.
To get there from here, drive west on I-80 out of AD04 (which Mariko Yamada will easily win), through the hot AD11 (which I wrote about on March 30). [YouTube video of a recent AD11 debate.] You then cut northwest across 37 to Marin County into the equally hot AD10. This is a solidly Democratic district (Jerry Brown exceeded two-thirds of the vote) that stretches from the northern span of the Golden Gate up the 101 corridor to the southern half of Santa Rosa, divided at College Avenue.
Seven candidates are running for the open seat, which is mostly represented now by congressional candidate Jared Huffman (D). Five of these are Democrats, and there is one Republican and one No Party Preference candidate.
This is an interesting district for top two math.
I project the Democrats will get 65-75% of the vote. That leaves 25-35% of the vote for the Republican and NPP candidate. Republican Peter Mancus hasn't opened a committee, and NPP candidate Joe Boswell raised $36k and spent $28k through the March 17 filing period.
The top Democrats are Assemblymember Michael Allen, who moved from Napa to San Rafael to find an open seat, and San Rafael councilmember Marc Levine. Further left, sociologist Alex Easton-Brown is fighting for the 99% and has gotten some traction on the left.
In a June primary, I would project that a solo Republican would get 25-30% of the vote. However, Boswell may pick up some of those votes as he runs as a moderate independent, although he has been criticized for ducking a recent debate. With the number of choices on the Democratic side, Boswell is unlikely to garner too many, and I project that the non-Democrats will only get 25-35% of the vote.
With the support of Speaker John Perez, Allen got the Democratic Party's endorsement. The Marin Independent-Journal gave a tepid endorsement to Levine, while the Santa Rosa Press Democrat gave a dual endorsement of Allen and Levine in hopes of a November runoff. The online Marin Pacific Sun gave the nod to Easton-Brown.
Allen is using incumbent advantage (and the Speaker's endorsement) to far outpace other candidates in fundraising, although Levine has enough money to position himself as the "local alternative" to Allen. While interest groups have put plenty of money behind Allen, there is not a huge passion, evident by the lack of independent expenditure interest. (Allen received the benefit of the first IE with $50k from the California Statewide Law Enforcement Association last week.)
The Democratic race is really against Allen and Levine, although the other three will determine whether November is a shoe-in for one of the two or a rematch between the two. If the three other candidates--Easton-Brown, H. Christian Gunderson, and Connie Wu--exceed a combined share of the vote of 15% or more (averaging 5% each), either Allen or Levine will likely head to November. If they combine for below 10% and Mancus and Boswell attain the lower end of the GOP/indie range, then we could have a face off of Allen and Levine.
Heading north out of AD11, we land in Wes Chesbro's AD02, which he will easily win for a second term in the Assembly. This is also the location of one of the hottest congressional primaries, which I'll cover tomorrow.
POLITICALLY GEEKERY, ON STEROIDS: Today's absentee ballot return report is sorted by Assembly, Senate and Congressional districts. The report is brought to you by Political Data Inc. and Redistricting Partners. So far, 426,501 voters have cast votes already.
I LOVE YOU, YOU LOVE ME: A new group, icPurple.org, reported Friday making web ads for Chad Condit and Linda Parks, both independent candidates. The committee also has made a video for Nathan Fletcher's campaign for mayor of San Diego, and is backed by La Jolla billionaire Ted Waitt, a venture capitalist and co-founder of Gateway, Inc. Here are the ads.
AD19: Michael Breyer ups his ante with an additional $75,000 for a total of $183k of personal funds for his campaign to make top-two in the west San Francisco district.
CONGRATS: To AP's Judy Lin on her nuptials to Robert Frickey. We hope she is having a better honeymoon than Zuck.
FAREWELL: Former OC GOP Chairman Tom Fuentes (1948-2012).
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
Jerry Brown's Tax Proposal is Just Extortion
Melissa Griffin @ sfexaminer.com
Californians care about education, but we do not appreciate being treated with rank manipulation. Keeping these education trigger cuts in the budget may even backfire.
'Tax The Rich' Is The Opposite Of Reform
George Skelton @ latimes.com
California is too dependent on the income tax, period. Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal would make the state's yo-yoing tax system even more volatile.
A Current Lawmaker On The Ballot-- Who Would Know?
Don Thompson @ mercurynews.com
Assemblywoman Beth Gaines has been a state lawmaker since she won a special election to fill an empty seat last year. But voters can't tell that from her ballot designation, which identifies her as a "small business owner" as she runs for re-election. The issue has taken center stage in her primary battle with another Republican, who has criticized her ballot label as deceptive.
Political Empire: Campaign Goofs, Ballot Shenanigans And More
You know that old political joke, "Vote early, vote often"? Yeah, Riverside City Councilman Mike Gardner's heard it. And he's been hearing it more lately, after his first mailer in his mayoral campaign assured people their vote counts â¦ on June 4. (The election is June 5.)
Utah's Experiment With 4-day Workweek Has Lessons For California
Jon Ortiz @ sacbee.com
As Gov. Jerry Brown and labor unions negotiate to put state workers on a four-day, 38-hour workweek to cut payroll costs, they could learn a lot by looking east - to Utah.
Assembly: Campaigns Hot In SB County Contests
JIM MILLER @ pe.com
In state Assembly races: Democrats vs. Democrats in District 47, and the GOP vs. the GOP in District 33.
CalPERS Looks At Job-creating Infrastructure
In a happy convergence, pension funds are moving into infrastructure to reduce inflation and market risk, while deficit-ridden governments are deep in bond debt and looking for new ways to rebuild and expand crumbling public works.
Shouldn't Hydro Count Against The Carbon Reduction Mandate?
Dan Walters @ sacbee.com
Sen. Anthony Cannella, R-Ceres, proposed a step in that direction with legislation that would have subtracted hydropower before calculating the 33 percent mandate on the remaining power supply. However, the bill â supported by utilities but opposed by environmental groups and generators of approved sources of renewable power â was trashed in the Senate Natural Resources Committee.
Micaela Massimino @ blogs.sacbee.com
The Senate has scheduled 11 hearings this week to consider Gov. Jerry Brown's revised budget, including two today that will look at health and general government issues. Two Assembly budget panels meet today as well.
Governor Seeks To Cut Programs Dems Pledge To Save
Wyatt Buchanan @ sfgate.com
Gov. Jerry Brown's latest budget proposal attempts to close a formidable $15.7 billion deficit, but the real debate at the Capitol in the next few weeks probably will be over how to cut just a fraction of the big amount.
Calif. Inmate Switch Puts Pressure On County Jails
SANTA ANA, Calif.—The number of jail beds in Riverside County east of Los Angeles was finally catching up with the regions rapid growth when state lawmakers passed sweeping legislation that assigned thousands of inmates who would have gone to prison to their local lock-ups instead.
Q&a: Dr. Ernie Bodai, On Global Breast Cancer Stamp, Proposition 29 - Health And Medicine - The Sacramento Bee
Dr. Ernie Bodai of Kaiser Permanente says the causes of breast cancer are elusive, but he believes there must be "a chemical component."
Filling A Need For Bilingual Health Care
Hannah Guzik @ healthycal.org
The growing number of immigrants from Mexico and other Spanish-speaking countries into Ventura County has led to a shortage of bilingual providers that the nonprofit Centers for Family Health are attempting to address.
DaVita to buy HealthCare Partners in $4.42B deal
The Associated Press @ utsandiego.com
Kidney dialysis services provider DaVita says it will buy the doctor network operator HealthCare Partners in a cash-stock deal valued at $4.42 billion.
California's Child Care System Faces Deep Cuts
Local @ mercurynews.com
Its the strongest preschool programs -- those that pay off when a child enters school -- that appear to be most at risk under the governors budget proposal.
Support For Pot In 2nd District House Race
Joe Garofoli @ sfgate.com
Andy Caffrey, a Garberville resident running for Congress, stood before the media outside a former medical marijuana dispensary in Fairfax the other day and sparked up a - medicinal - joint. No biggie. Caffrey has done...
Cory Booker backs off criticism of Obama
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker is backing off comments he made Sunday, when he criticized President Barack Obama's re-election campaign for its attacks on Bain Capital, the private equity firm once run by Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
Poll: Obama, Romney on 3 top issues
Tim Mak @ politico.com
Healthcare costs, unemployment and the budget deficit top the list as important economic issues.
Monday is the last day to register to vote
Today is the last day to register to vote in the June 5 primary election.Voters must re-register whenever they have moved to a new address, changed their name or want to change political party affiliation.
Court-bound Housing Meltdown Is Stark At Plumas Lake - Real Estate - The Sacramento Bee
A construction trailer, apparently unused by Lennar in some time, is surrounded by weeds in the Plumas Lake subdivision in Yuba County.
Rail Authority Policy To Purge E-mails Draws Critics' Ire
A congressional committee is investigating California’s $68 billion bullet train project. The U.S. Government Accountability Office is investigating, too.
Edwards Trial Shows Affair's Strains on Campaign
Kim Severson @ nytimes.com
The two lives of John Edwards have collided spectacularly in the federal courthouse where the government is trying him on charges of campaign finance fraud and conspiracy.
Lawyers Prey On Foreclosure-facing Homeowners In San Fernando Valley And Beyond - La Daily News
Suspecting fraud, the Van Nuys resident hired a lawyer to sort things out.