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THE NOONER for October 18, 2012
BE A FOLLOWER: Help me get to 1,000 Twitter followers!
VBM REPORT: 380,756 have voted (5% of VBMs - 5% of Dem VBMs, 5% of Rep VBMs)
!!! CD52 is at 11% of Dem+ and 12% of Rep+ -- 5.7% of total registered Dems have already voted and 6.8% of total regisered Reps have already voted
THE SENATE PLAYING FIELD
On Monday, we looked at the Assembly playing field, and now it's time to look at the upper house. Democrats currently hold 25 seats, two short of a two-thirds supermajority. On the ballot on November 6 are 21 seats, including all the odd-numbered seats and SD04, the north state safe Republican seat vacated by Doug LaMalfa. Technically, November is a primary election for SD04, and if a candidate does not receive 50% of the vote, the general election will be January 8. (Note that specials are different than regular elections, as there is not always a "top two" runoff.)
Of the seats not up this year, Democrats hold 15. Of those up this year, 10 are 99%-100% likely to go Democrat (2 are Dem-Dem and 3 weren't contested), including one assured pick-up with Bill Monning in SD17. Of the remaining ten, only 2 are currently held by Democrats, creating a maximum net loss of one seat. Darrell Steinberg is assured of having at least 24 members of his caucus when the Legislature is sworn in the first Monday in December.
One of the sets currently held by Steinberg's caucus is the likely Democrat seat of former Assemblymember Hannah-Beth Jackson (D) vs. Mike Stoker (R) in SD19 on the Central Coast. This is really a safe Democrat seat, and the only reasons it makes this discussion are the very personal political divide between Democrats in the region, Stoker's previous service as a county supervisor, and some decent fundraising. Jackson is a clear favorite.
The other current Dem seat is in San Diego, we have Assemblymember Marty Block running against former Assemblymember George Plescia in a SD39, which leans Democrat. Block is the clear favorite, although we've seen party money flowing in to Plescia suggesting they think he has a shot. Plescia is a moderate in a city that loves Republican moderates (although not Rep-turned-NPP moderates), and the UT San Diego has come out strong for Plescia. Because this overlaps CD52, one of the hottest congressional races in the nation, there are intensive GOTV efforts on both sides. This is evident by the fact that Republicans have returned 10% of their vote by mail ballots and Democrats have already returned 9%--the highest of any Senate district in the state.
If Democrats hold these two seats, they increase their majority to 26.
SD05 pits two Assemblymembers--Cathleen Galgiani (D) and Bill Berryhill (R) --against each other in the perennial swing area of the northern San Joaquin Valley. Both are moderates within their respective caucuses, and are strong fundraisers. The Stockton Record endorsed Berryhill, while the Modesto Bee endorsed Galgiani. In the end, this district will likely be more determined by the ground game than issues. Since May, Democrats have increased voter registration by 4,324, while Republicans have lost 1,797, creating a 41.7%-38.7% edge. Democrats have 15,000 more voters that cast mail-in ballots, which could be a factor helping Galgiani. That said, never underestimate the Berryhill name in the Valley, keeping this race a "toss up."
In SD27, state senator Fran Pavley finds herself in a contested seat against deputy district attorney Todd Zink. SD27 is technically Tony Strickland's seat, which is why it is a possible pick-up for Democrats. (I count SD19 as Pavley's current seat.) Similar to SD05, Democrats have had a superior voter registration effort, adding 5,792 Democrats since May, while Republicans have added only 410, increasing the margin for Democrats to 6.2%. Both are good fundraisers, although Pavley had more of a war chest to start with, spending $1.2 million over the summer to Zink's $529,000. With the voter registration numbers, and with it looking like independent expenditures have moved elsewhere, I now put this race as Lean Democrat, with Pavley favored slightly over Zink.
Finally, the hottest state legislative race is SD31, the battle royale between Assemblymember Jeff Miller and Richard Roth in Riverside. Republicans have a slight (0.2%) voter registration edge here, although Democrats will attribute it to a paid voter registration drive over the summer that had a suspicious number of re-registrations. In total, Republicans added a shocking 23,208 voters between May and September, while Democrats added 7,782. Nearly $1.5 million has been raised since October 1, with a 2:1 advantage for Roth. At the end of the day, this will be about turnout, particularly among Latino voters. This is a pure toss-up and the polling I've seen shows that it's all about the turnout model used.
Thus, Steinberg has 26 votes in the bank. With the challenge of SD34 (Lou Correa's seat in 2014), Democrats would love to see at least 28 votes. From today's landscape, 27 is likely, 28 is very possible, but a sweep of the three races would be a surprise.
REPORT CARD: The California State University doles out grades, with no legislator getting an A.
ENDORSEMENTS: I've added the Bakersfield Californian to the newspapers on my endorsements chart. Interesting factoid: it's the only paper that has taken a "No on 30, Yes on 38" stance.
Both the Bakersfield Californian and Stockton Record have implemented paywalls. Speaking of that, several of you tried to put dough in my coffee fund yesterday and got a broken PayPal link. Here's the correct one, and thank you!
CD52: Bilbray Plays It Cool In Midst of Tough California Race [Kyle Trygstad @ Roll Call]
SD31: Jeff Miller calls the California Teachers Association "supporters of child molesters" in mailer against Richard Roth.
AD08: Democratic party sends $490,000 to Ken Cooley.
ON MESSAGE: "An Oakland City Council candidate [Dan Kalb] was robbed at gunpoint Wednesday night near his home after he attended a neighborhood anti-crime meeting, authorities said."
PRETTY FUNNY: The "reviewers" take the Romney's binder meme to Amazon.
Gov. Jerry Brown To Make Sacramento Campaign Stop For Tax Measure
Gov. Jerry Brown will make another appearance in support of Proposition 30 on Thursday, this time at a community college in Sacramento that faces additional cuts if his tax measure fails.
Taxpayer group sues over CSU campaign email
The Associated Press @ utsandiego.com
An anti-tax group is suing California State University, Monterey Bay over an email sent by a professor urging students to support Proposition 30, Gov. Jerry Brown's November tax initiative.
Gov. Jerry Brown Rakes In $4 Million For Prop. 30
Gov. Jerry Brown may have just rejoined the campaign trail for Proposition 30 this week, but campaign finance filings indicate he's been busy dialing for dollars this month. The governor's tax initiative has raked in more than $4 million since...
Sacramento TV one of country's busiest markets for political ads
Torey Van Oot @ blogs.sacbee.com
TV watchers in the Sacramento media market are getting pounded with campaign spots at levels close to those seen in some of the country's top swing states for the presidential election.
Stale Debate On Tax Rates Has Diminishing Returns
Wyatt Buchanan, Michael Collier, Richard Dunham, Bob Egelko, Joe Garofoli, Marisa Lagos, Carolyn Lochhead, Carla Marinucci, @ blog.sfgate.com
Republican Ronald Reagan and Democrat John F. Kennedy, icons of their parties, both called for lower income tax rates to boost growth. The GOP has not let go of the idea since. Nor has President Obama, who despite calling for a higher tax rate on high ...
Campaign Watchdogs Say Arizona Group's $11 Million Donation Exploits Loophole In California Law
Kevin Yamamura @ sacbee.com
In California's ever-expensive ballot wars, voters typically know who funds advertisements that hold great sway with the electorate. But that may be changing.
Feinstein Challenger Emken In Debt
SACRAMENTO -- The Republican challenging U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein has taken on $300,000 of campaign debt. A Federal Election Commission report posted for public review on Tuesday shows autism advocate Elizabeth Emken has about $100,000 cash on hand but owes $310,000 for the period ending in
Prop. 32's Real Purpose Is To Cripple Labor Unions Politically
George Skelton @ latimes.com
Backers say Prop. 32 would stop special-interest money from influencing politicians, but the measure actually would tilt the playing field unfairly to the right.
Sacramento County Program Offers Health Care For Poor
Loretta Kalb @ sacbee.com
Sacramento became the latest county Wednesday to unveil a medical program to provide care for some of its poorest residents until the Affordable Care Act takes effect in 2014.
Shadowy Arizona Group Inserts Itself Into California Campaigns
Steven Harmon @ mercurynews.com
The Americans for Responsible Leadership donates $11 million to a PAC thats fighting on behalf of Proposition 32 and against Proposition 30.
Public unions face choices in two-front ballot war
Jon Ortiz @ sacbee.com
If he had just one vote on Nov. 6, the president of the California Federation of Teachers wouldn't use it on Gov. Jerry Brown's tax hike for schools.
Rep For Assemblyman Steve Knight Arrested Following Standoff, Grenades Found
Rebecca Tennison, 48, was taken into custody and is being held at West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga in lieu of $50,000 bail.
CalPERS Approves Rate Hike For Long Term Care - Business - The Sacramento Bee
CalPERS has given final approval to an 85 percent rate hike for policyholders in its long-term care insurance program.
Taxpayer group sues Cal State for advocating on Prop. 30
Laurel Rosenhall @ blogs.sacbee.com
The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association has sued the California State University alleging a professor at the Monterey Bay campus sent students an email advocating in favor of a tax measure on the Nov. 6 ballot.
Officials: Obama Ready To Veto A Bill Blocking ‘fiscal Cliff’ Without Tax Hike For Rich
President Obama is prepared to veto legislation to block year-end tax hikes and spending cuts, collectively known as the “fiscal cliff,” unless Republicans bow to his demand to raise tax rates for the wealthy, administration officials said.
L.A. County Assessor John Noguez Arrested In Property-tax Corruption Probe - La Daily News
The scheme allegedly cost county taxpayers at least $1.3 million, and Noguez is accused of accepting at least $185,000 in bribes in 2010, according to District Attorney Steve Cooley's office.
Foreclosures Drop Dramatically In Sacramento And Statewide
Hudson Sangree @ sacbee.com
Home foreclosures in Sacramento and elsewhere in the state have dropped significantly, third-quarter data shows.
Mitt Romney Leading President Obama By Six In Gallup Poll
Chris Cillizza @ washingtonpost.com
Mitt Romney has taken a six-point lead over President Obama in the latest Gallup national tracking poll — his biggest lead to date and the first time he has led outside the margin of error.
College Costs Test Obamaâs Education Policies
s policies highlight the differing philosophical views about the role of government in education.
Micaela Massimino @ blogs.sacbee.com
Gov. Jerry Brown takes his campaign for Proposition 30 to Sacramento City College today, joining Senate leader
California's New Congressional Landscape Draws In More Cash
Richard Simon @ latimes.com
Altered boundaries, retirements and a new 'top two' primary system make California House races more competitive and more expensive — at least $1 million per candidate in 11 cases.
More Sacramento-area Families Crowding Into Shared Homes, Census Says - Real Estate - The Sacramento Bee
Christi Gutierrez holds her eight-month-old twins Julian and Anastacia Gutierrez and is surrounded by the rest of her eight children at an apartment they are renting with the help of a charity agency.
Two Democrats Face Off In Hard-fought Westside Assembly Contest
Democrat faces Democrat in Westside Assembly contest