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THE NOONER for March 13, 2013

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Not unexpectedly, the race to fill Gloria Negrete McLeod's senate seat moves to a May 14 runoff, with Norma Torres the strong favorite. Parke Skelton e-mails "The interesting number (I think anyway) is that in a 8.9% turnout election (what we have at the moment, it will go up to, maybe 11, 12%) the combined Democratic vote (Norma and 3 Dem challengers) was 67.1%. Almost exactly the percentage McCloud received in 11/10 (67.9%). The Reps have no chance, even in a pathetically low turnout environment.


  • Paul Vincent Avila (D): 2.6%
  • Joanne T. Gilbert (D): 7.0%
  • Norma J. Torres (D): 43.6%
  • Larry Walker (D): 13.9%
  • Kenny Coble (R): 6.5%
  • Paul S. Leon (R): 26.4%

Meanwhile, with Ben Hueso's move down the hall to the upper chamber, Democrats regain their two-thirds majority lost when Michael Rubio resigned.


  • Ben Hueso (D): 52.3%
  • Anna Nevenic (D): 10.7%
  • Hector Raul Gastelum (R): 22.0%
  • Xanthi Gionis (R): 15.0%

Darrell Steinberg: "On behalf of all Senate Democrats, I congratulate Ben Hueso on his impressive victory tonight and look forward to seeing him sworn in as soon as possible as California’s newest State Senator. Tonight, the people of the 40th Senate District elected a champion for small businesses, middle-class families and environmental protection to represent them. I will be proud to serve alongside Ben. He is truly a great public servant and worthy successor to our friend, now-Congressman Juan Vargas."

OLD SD16/NEW SD14: The race for the May 27 special election to fill Rubio's seat is shaping up, with the following likely candidates:

  • Fran Florez (D - Shafter Councilmember)
  • Leticia Perez (D - Kern Supervisor)
  • Richard Valley (D - Kings Supervisor)
  • Andy Vidak (R - Farmer)
  • Gary Yep (R - Mayor, Kerman)

AD45: Krekorian district director Damian Carroll announces today that he is running for Bob Blumenfield's Assembly seat, which will be left vacant when Blumenfield is sworn in to the L.A. City Council on July 1.

In other LA-LA news, the Los Angeles Democratic Party could not get two-thirds agreement to endorse in mayoral runoff.  The party endorsed Gil Cedillo in CD1, Cindy Montanez in CD6 (special election),  Curren Price, Jr. in CD9, and John Choi in CD13.

While Wendy Greuel wasn't able to win the party's endorsement, the LAT reports that she is closing in on the LA County Labor Fed endorsement, largely over pension issues.

In Orange County, 285,336 voters (17%) have been purged from the voting rolls for non-activity, reports Richard Winger. The February 10 report from the Secretary of State is still being reviewed. The agency certainly has more pressing deadlines... [Interestingly, the LLC application for The Nooner/LegTrack/etc. is currently one in the backed-up queue.]

Winger also writes to encourage changing top-two into a blanket primary to provide access to minor parties. Assemblymembers Michael Allen and Betsy Butler agree, as do the interest groups asked to spend big dough to defend them.

While in DC and Yosemite, I missed this gem, whereby Tim Donnelly's website confused Leland Yee and Ted Lieu. [h/t Jennifer Fearing]

Roll Call: House Democrats Outraise GOP Counterparts By 1.3M in February

TODAY'S QUESTION:  What is the "Great Indian Goose" and where is it located in the Capitol? 



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California Campaign Pushes Health Care For Undocumented Immigrants
Jim Sanders @
A television advertising campaign was launched in Sacramento, Los Angeles and the Bay Area this week to include undocumented immigrants in California's coming health-care reform.

Donnelly Dabbles In Faux Bid For Governor
Dan Morain @
Donnelly said he is merely exploring a candidacy. He is not delusional, as he made clear to the folks who showed up at the Esquire last week. If they didn't want to donate to Donnelly for Governor, he would gladly accept $4,100 into his other campaign account, Donnelly for Assembly 2014.

Uc, CSU Foundations Remain Obscure Despite New Law
SACRAMENTO -- Under a law that took effect last year, the public has the right to access the records of private foundations that are affiliated with University of California and California State University campuses and examine how they spend the hundreds of millions of dollars they raise.

Senate Democrats Get Back Supermajority With Hueso Win
Torey Van Oot @
California Democrats have recaptured a supermajority in the state Senate as Democrat Ben Hueso sailed to victory in a special election for a vacant San Diego-area Senate seat Tuesday night.

Battle Lines Forming On Carbon Tax
Wyatt Buchanan, Michael Collier, Richard Dunham, Bob Egelko, Joe Garofoli, Marisa Lagos, Carolyn Lochhead, Carla Marinucci, @
For a political non-starter, a carbon tax is generating an awful lot of activity on Capitol Hill. On Wednesday, the conservative Republican Study Committee is holding a press conference to slam the idea, headlined by Texas Reps. Joe Barton and Jeb Hens...

Assemblyman Ben Hueso Poised To Take Senate Seat
Patrick McGreevy @
With all precincts reporting, Hueso garnered 52% of the vote, according to the unofficial tally Tuesday night, which is enough to avoid a May runoff against one of the other three candidates in the race.

Greuel Picks Up Another Big Union Endorsement
William Nottingham @
The political committee of a powerful L.A. County labor organization backed City Controller Wendy Greuel in the May 21 mayoral contest on Tuesday after declining to pick a candidate in the primary.

California Legislature Gets 'D' In Online Open Records Report
Torey Van Oot @
A new report sheds light on one place California's sun doesn't always shine: the state Capitol.

32nd Senate District: Torres, Leon Head To May Runoff
Assemblywoman Norma Torres and Ontario Mayor Paul Leon will face each other in a May runoff after finishing atop a six-person field in Tuesday's special primary election to fill the unexpired term of former state Sen. Gloria Negrete McLeod.

$10,000 college degree just a 'sound bite,' says CSU chancellor
Laurel Rosenhall @
During a visit with The Bee's editorial board Tuesday, the new chancellor of the California State University system shot down an idea Assemblyman Dan Logue has proposed to create a bachelor's degree that would cost students $10,000.

L.A. County To Revise Proposed Parcel Tax To Fight Polluted Runoff
Abby Sewell @
Supervisors decide against a mail-only ballot for property owners. The fee would help cities and the county deal with storm water and new state regulations

State Agency Issues Complaints Against San Jose Over Pension Talks
John Woolfolk @
The California Public Employment Relations Board has issued complaints against San Jose for its negotiations with its unions over pension reform.

Brown administration files final furlough brief in appellate court
Jon Ortiz @
Lawyers representing Gov. Jerry Brown have filed their last brief in the final furlough skirmish between state labor and management.

In Need Of A Statewide Upgrade
California was the birthplace of the personal computer industry. We invented the tools to take the Web worldwide. And now the state is home to the lion's share of second-generation Internet companies that are making Web-based interaction our chosen form of electronic communication in personal and business relationships. But all of that world-changing innovation, unfortunately, seems to stop at the government's door. California cities, and especially state government, have struggled to tap into the homegrown entrepreneurial energy that is driving the Information Age.

Obama: Differences on taxes, spending may mean no budget deal is possible
Josh Lederman @
House Republicans are staking out stark differences with Democrats as they prepare to meet with President Barack Obama for talks over the budget impasse, while Obama is conceding that a political accommodation may be impossible.

Dueling Budgets: Key Takeaways
David Nather @
Both Ryan's plan and Murray's plan have no chance of becoming law. | AP Photos

California Attorney General Busts Alleged Stolen Smartphone Ring
Marc Lifsher @
State electronic-crime investigators have arrested two Sacramento men and charged them with the fraudulent purchase of large quantities of smartphones for resale in Hong Kong.

Democrats retain supermajority in state Senate
Democrats will retain their two-thirds majority in the state Senate while temporarily keeping their narrow supermajority in the Assembly after Democratic candidates advanced in two special elections Tuesday.