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THE NOONER for June 4, 2012
Below the jump: ten races/themes to watch tomorrow.
ELECTION NIGHT LIVEBLOG: I will be live blogging Election Night beginning at 8pm PDT. Visit www.aroundthecapitol.com/live/ now to sign up for an e-mail reminder before the event.
Rock stars expected to stop by to offer their insights on results include Paul Mitchell, Matt Rexroad, Mike Madrid, Carla Marinucci, Christopher Cabaldon, Jon Fleischman, Lisa Vanderbruggen, Anthony York, and John Myers. You'll be critical to the live blog as well, and your comments will be shared with other viewers.
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ABSENTEE BALLOT REPORTS by Political Data Inc. and Redistricting Partners
RUNDOWN: 1,976,934 ballots in; 26% of absentees have voted; 41% of likely absentees (3/4+new) are in.
These are the themes/races that I am most interested in for some statewide/poligeek significance, beyond the candidates involved.
SD31 (Riverside) - Business interests have invested a lot in former Assemblymember Steve Clute (D), believing that Assemblymember Jeff Miller (R) has a better shot against him than Steinberg-backed Richard Roth (D). It ain't personal…it's about keeping Democrats from getting two-thirds.
AD74 (Newport Beach) - Can purple Republican Charles Munger, Jr. succeed in his attempt to unseat Allan Mansoor by sending Leslie Daigle to November?
CD24 (Santa Barbara) - Can top-two proponent Abel Maldonado survive in a low turnout primary with ongoing news about family business troubles?
SD05 (San Joaquin) - Moderate Republican Bill Berryhill v. "No Bull" conservative Leroy Ornellas. While Bill caused GOP angst over budget discussions last year, they need him to win the primary for a strong shot against Cathleen Galgiani (D).
CD47 (Long Beach/NW OC) - Will Mr. or Mrs. Shah get more votes? Oh, beyond that, can Steve Kuykendall's Congressman (Ret.) title overcome a huge financial advantage by Gary DeLong? Also, check the follow equation: If (DeLong +Kuykendall) >= (Lowenthal), $$$ from NRCC.
SD27 (Ventura) - Can Todd Zink (R) make enough of a respectable showing against Fran Pavley (D) to draw party investment for the November rematch in this likely pick-up for the Dems?
CD15 (Hayward-Pleasanton) - Can Pete Stark hold on to the top spot in the three-way primary, the second spot, or might he even fall to third? Aside from the Hahn/Richardson certainty, this is the only district in which a Dem incumbent might be ousted by a Dem challenger.
AD46 (Sherman Oaks) - In this battle over charter schools and not much else, will there be more pro-Brian Johnson or anti-Brian Johnson votes? When all is tallied (see tomorrow's Nooner), this will likely be the most expensive state legislative primary, even though the impact on Sacramento will be minimal.
Yes, I know, there are lots more interesting stories, which we'll cover on tomorrow night's live blog, but it's time to hop in the shower and get to work.
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
California Government Unions Move To Squeeze Out Private Contractors
Jon Ortiz @ sacbee.com
With California facing yet another budget crisis that threatens state jobs and pay, employee unions are moving on several fronts to push use of civil service workers instead of private contractors for state government work.
Big Money Can Erase Big Deficits In Ballot Initiative Races
Steven Harmon @ mercurynews.com
This year, Proposition 29 is facing long odds to overcome Big Tobaccos vast money advantage.
Contra Costa Voter Turnout Predicted To Be 'Anemic' Set To Make Tax And Candidate Decisions Tuesday
Local @ contracostatimes.com
Tuesdays vote will still be historic; county supervisor seats, an open Assembly district primary and local sales and parcel taxes are up for grabs.
Term Limits Ballot Measure Attracts Big-money Donors, Little Else
Stephanie Snyder @ californiawatch.org
More than 17 million Californians took the time to register to vote. About 726,000 of them stopped long enough to sign a petition putting Proposition 28 on tomorrow's ballot.
Assembly passes bill to cut commute time from SF to Sacramento
Jim Sanders @ blogs.sacbee.com
Maybe it's just coincidence that it was proposed by a San Francisco lawmaker, maybe not, but legislation designed to ease the commute from San Francisco to the Capitol easily cleared the Assembly recently.
Calif. voters face redrawn ballot, new districts
JULIET WILLIAMS, Associated Press @ utsandiego.com
California voters will face a newly reshaped ballot with many more choices on Tuesday as they cast votes in the first statewide election to implement two major voter-approved political reforms and as candidates compete in districts meant to be more competitive.
The Caucus: Redistricting and Low Approval Numbers Mean Re-Election to House is Not Always a Sure Thing
CARL HULSE @ nytimes.com
Primary results show that while the vast majority of House members seeking re-election are going to win, lawmakers who do not take the proper precautions and prepare for disgruntled voters could find themselves surprised come Election Day.
State's Top 100 Political Donors Contribute $1.25 Billion
Coulter Jones and Elizabeth Titus @ californiawatch.org
In a state with nearly 38 million people, few have more influence than the top 100 donors to California campaigns â a powerful club that has donated overwhelmingly to Democrats and spent $1.25 billion to influence voters over the past dozen years.
Congress shifting attention to women's issues, healthcare
Lisa Mascaro @ latimes.com
WASHINGTON -- Congress returns its attention this week to women’s issues with the Senate voting on legislation to ensure paycheck equity as GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney tapped a Republican congresswoman to be his campaign liaison in the House.
Will San Jose, San Diego Lead Pension Reform?
Ed Mendel @ calpensions.com
One of the reasons that San Diego and San Jose will vote on widely watched pension reforms Tuesday is that they share the same problem: Retirement costs are eating up about 20 percent of their general fund budgets.
Voter Registration Up For Tuesday's Primary
John Howard @ capitolweekly.net
Nearly three out of four eligible voters in California have registered to cast ballots in Tuesdayâs election, and fully a fifth of the electorate has declined to state a party preference, according to the stateâs elections officer. About 1.4 million more Californians are registered now than in February 2008, the year of the last presidential primary election.
Trends In California Ed Bills
Kathryn Baron @ toped.svefoundation.org
As we reported back in April, Senator Steinberg and other legislators were disturbed by a report called Suspended Education in California that found the harshest punishments were carried out with clear racial disparity.
CA Primary Could Pick 'Birther' To Face Feinstein
Carolyn Lochhead @ sfgate.com
A novel California primary that premieres Tuesday was intended to produce moderates, but in California's U.S. Senate race, it could yield a challenger who claims President Obama was born in Kenya.
California Tests Nonpartisan Primaries
Jennifer Medina @ nytimes.com
When new redistricting maps changed the boundaries of this Congressional district to give Democrats a slight edge for the first time in decades, party loyalists were elated.
Attack mailers flood mailboxes as election day nears
Jean Merl @ latimes.com
Under the state's new voting system, the top two vote-getters regardless of party will face each other in November. A political analyst says the 'nastiest campaigns are between candidates who are closest ideologically.'
Finance Reform Without Accountability Could Devastate Career Tech
We hope the governor and the Legislature take the time necessary to develop solutions to protect career technical education programs while also achieving education finance reform. Given the challenges facing these programs at the local level, we know our schools will not continue to support career technical education without the incentives to do so.
Environmentalists Move To Block Willits Highway Bypass
Dan Walters @ sacbee.com
A half-century ago, the 400-mile stretch of Highway 101 between San Francisco and the Oregon border was a two-lane roadway that meandered through dozens of small towns. During summer months, it was clogged with logging trucks and vacationers' trailers.
California voters often don't know much about judicial candidates
Ashley Powers @ latimes.com
Judges hold considerable sway over the lives of those in their courtrooms. But the average voter either has no clue how to assess judicial candidates or spends little time doing so.
D.A. Candidates Take A Nuanced View On Crime-fighting
Jack Leonard @ latimes.com
Several candidates in the race to replace Steve Cooley emphasize need for crime prevention and rehabilitation rather than simply locking offenders up.
Political Blotter: 83-year-old Senate candidate scales mountain
Josh Richman @ mercurynews.com
Ain't no mountain high enough for this 83-year-old U.S. Senate candidate and ex-Marine. True to his promise, Republican candidate Don Krampe, of Murrieta, scaled Mount Whitney -- the lower 48's highest summit -- to call attention to his campaign. Mount Whitney rises 14,505 feet; the campsite from which he made his ascent May 23 sits around 10,000 feet. He returned from the 22-mile hike May 25.
Rick Orlov's Tipoff: Break From Campaign Mailers Will Be Short
Rick Orlov @ dailynews.com
Tired of all those robocalls and that campaign literature stuffing your mailbox? Take heart. Just one more day to go in this part of the election season and a small break before it starts all over again for the Nov. 6 general election.
Independent spending on legislative races exceeds $12 million
Torey Van Oot @ blogs.sacbee.com
Independent groups have spent more than $12 million to influence the outcome of tomorrow's primary contests for state legislative seats, campaign finance filings show.
The Buzz: Forgot to register? You may have better luck next time
Californians who forgot to register to vote in Tuesday's election may have better luck next time if a bill passed by the Assembly becomes law.