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THE NOONER for March 25, 2013

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SCOTUSBlog provides a roundup of the weekend's stories previewing the SupCt's arguments on gay marriage this week. Proposition 8 will be heard tomorrow, and the Defense of Marriage Act is up Wednesday.

Regardless of where you stand, you have to admit this shift in public opinion on gay marriage is totally astounding:

  • Now: 58% support, 36% oppose
  • 2008: 36% support, 58% oppose

WaPo/NBC March 7-10, 2013 

In what may be a sneaky way to force a part-time Legislature, Dan Schnur argues that fundraising should be banned when lawmakers are in session. [FlashReport]

ON THE LOOSE: Los Angeles Mayor Is Leaving Without Car, Job or Regrets [Adam Nagourney @ NYT] - "Mr. Villaraigosa talked about working in private equity, and returning to run again for office not too long in the future — very possibly for governor. He would not say when that might be, but did not rule out running a primary against Jerry Brown, the Democratic incumbent with whom Mr. Villaraigosa has had an at-times frosty relationship."

"Mister Mayor, there is a Mister Burton for you on line 1..."

FRIDAY NIGHT FLIGHTS: Four ex-Obama operatives quit Greuel's campaign [Michael Finnegan @ LAT] - "In a statement Friday, [Wendy] Greuel, the city controller, said she was expanding her field team by hiring consultant Sue Burnside, who worked on Greuel's previous City Council and controller campaigns. She did not mention the departure of the former Obama operatives: field director Stacy Cohen, data director Joe Kavanagh and regional field directors Maya Hutchinson and Marisa Kanof."

Meanwhile, Greuel picked up a key endorsement from Mark Ridley-Thomas.

THE UNION ADVANTAGE: We all hear the gripes of our friends in media about their employers, but San Francisco Chronicle reporters have taken to social media to fight proposed health benefit cuts proposed by Hearst Corp.

$$$: Stockton's court date arrives [Scott Smith @ Stockton Record] "If Stockton prevails in this four-day trial and is found suitable for bankruptcy, the city will next have to formalize its financial restructuring, facing another round of stiff opposition from Wall Street creditors."

MORE TROUBLE COMING: CalPERS Rate Hike: 50 Percent Over Six Years [Ed Mendel @]

GOOD WORK: Alameda County CEO Susan Muranishi, approaching retirement, is set to receive $413,000 CalPERS pension for life. [Matier and Ross @ SFChron]

Rupert Murdoch wants media ownership rules changed, which would allow him to buy the Los Angeles Times [Amy Chozick @ NYT]

POLLING PLEASURE: LAT USC Dornsife poll on taxes, immigration and guns.

AURAL PLEASURE: John Myers and Anthony York tickle our ears with the Capitol Connection podcast.

SANDY EGGO: Secret anti-DeMaio campaign revealed [Craig Gustafson @ UT]

COOL: JetBlue plans to offer fast onboard Wi-Fi free of charge

NOT COOL: SFChron joins the paywall trends with the launch of




  • Government & public affairs professionals: Veteran lobbyist Ray LeBov presents his introductory "Legislative Process / Lobbying 101" seminar Thursday, March 28. $250. Info / registration: www.capitolseminars.net916-442-5009.

  • Future of California Elections: Deputy Director | Coordinator: Sacramento, elections policy experience preferred

  • $125,000 Irvine Leadership Awards: Do you know an innovative, effective leader who is improving California's future? Nominate him or her for a 2014 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award at Deadline: April 5, 2013.

  • ADD YOUR CLASSIFIED: e-mail Scott to add your 1-2 line classified ad for $25/week for and a link (or free hosted page) to reach the Nooner's awesome subscribers


Q&A: Supreme Court's Gay-Marriage Hearings
Michael Doyle @
The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday and Wednesday will confront two distinct gay marriage cases, which together pose some very sensitive questions. Here's a rundown.

From NFL Players To Karl Rove, Opposition Melting To Same-sex Marriage
Wyatt Buchanan, Michael Collier, Richard Dunham, Bob Egelko, Joe Garofoli, Marisa Lagos, Carolyn Lochhead, Carla Marinucci, @
As the Supreme Court prepares to hear two momentous cases on same-sex marriage this week, opposition is evaporating. From National Football League players to Karl Rove, everyone seems to be coming out of the closet in favor of gays and lesbians securin...

Former Ethics Chief Would Ban Fundraising While California Lawmakers Work
Torey Van Oot @
Dan Schnur, a former Republican political consultant who served as chair of the California Fair Political Practices Commission, is launching a new effort to prohibit state legislators and statewide officers from raising cash when the Legislature is in session.

Same-sex Marriage Supporters Rally On The Steps Of L.A. City Hall
Jessica Garrison @
As the U.S. Supreme Court prepared to hear arguments in two same-sex marriage cases, hundreds of gay marriage supporters held a rally on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall on Sunday night.

When The Legislature Is In, Fundraising Should Be Banned. Period.
Dan Schnur @
During the almost three decades that I have been involved in politics, first as partisan advocate and in recent years as an analyst and observer, I have seen many unusual things. I watched a Democratic presidential candidate don a military helmet and climb into a tank to prove his national security credentials. I watched a movie star steal the show at a Republican National Convention by carrying on an extended conversation with an empty chair.

Ridley-Thomas Endorsement Could Help Greuel In A Low-Turnout Vote
Jack Dolan @
Los Angeles mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel stood on the lawn of Grand Park in downtown Sunday evening to announce her endorsement by L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, whose African American constituency is a coveted voting bloc in the May runoff election with City Councilman Eric Garcetti.

Gay Marriage And Supreme Court: Justice Anthony Kennedy At Center Of Proposition 8, Federal Cases
Local @
When the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday and Wednesday about same-sex marriage rights, Justice Anthony Kennedy will be scrutinized for his every word, sigh and twitch.

CalPERS Rate Hike: 50 Percent Over Six Years
Ed Mendel @
The CalPERS board last week tentatively approved an employer rate hike of roughly 50 percent over the next half dozen years, replacing a policy that kept rates low during the recession with a plan to reach full funding in 30 years.

Study: State Should Look At Eliminating Some Parks - Capitol And California - The Sacramento Bee
Bee file, 2013. The full moon rises over Lake Tahoe in a view eastward from Sugar Pine Point State Park.

Gay Civil Rights Movement Reaches The Supreme Court With Prop 8 And DOMA Cases
Carolyn Lochhead @
Seventeen years after President Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act, the gay civil rights movement will reach a pivotal milestone this week when the Supreme Court hears arguments in two momentous cases on same sex marriage.

Email Tax May Slice Spam And Scams Out Of Inboxes
George Skelton @
A Berkeley city councilman has proposed a tiny levy on senders of large batches of unwanted time-wasters.

Wendy Greuel Defends Campaign Leadership Changes
Dakota Smith @
Days after adding a new campaign manager and a field operations consultant, Los Angeles mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel defended her campaign's changes, saying they come at a critical moment in the election.

Immigration Reform, Maybe; But Long Wait For Health Access By The Undocumented
John M. Gonzalez @
A bandwagon of endorsements last week by Congressional Republicans have aligned with vows by President Obama and Senate Democrats to establish comprehensive immigration reform. A road to citizenship for people who entered the country illegally seems more assured by the day, but what is less clear is how the health care landscape of California, and the nation, would also change.

California Sen. Rod Wright Offers Up Good Sense
Dan Walters @
Rod Wright may be the most controversial member of the California Legislature – for good reason.

California AG Harris: Gay Marriage is a 'Fundamental Right'
Curtis Tate @
California Attorney General Kamala Harris said Sunday that two gay marriage cases before the U.S. Supreme Court this week were about a "fundamental right" in the U.S. Constitution.

Outreach Effort Aims To Get Uninsured Enrolled In Healthcare
Anna Gorman @
L.A. County is teaming with OneLA to hold enrollment events in places where those needing healthcare coverage naturally congregate, such as churches and schools.

Is Support For Gay Marriage Over-sold?
Chris Cillizza @
A new Washington Post-ABC News poll last week showed support for gay marriage hitting an all-time high at 58 percent, with support having risen by 21 points over the last decade alone.

Political Blotter: Bill would put medical marijuana under ABC's control
Josh Richman @
Assemblyman Tom Ammiano's bill would have medical marijuana regulated by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control; also, state Sen. Mark Leno wants to require police to get a search warrant before asking service providers to hand over emails.

Efforts To Legalize Marijuana In 2014 May Be Difficult, Experts Say
Wes Woods II @
Proponents of California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2014 may have a long way to go before they can see their measure implemented. The initiative, which proposes to legalize cannabis hemp for industrial, medical and recreational uses, is in the early stages of the ballot process. The activists behind it are planning to begin collecting signatures in May, several months ahead of the deadline to file with the state for a shot at the November 2014 ballot.

Background on Same-Sex Marriage Case at Supreme Court
s ban on same-sex marriage.

$5.6 million budget gap for Sacramento schools
Schools could be shuttered and positions could be eliminated as the Sacramento City Unified School District seeks to close a $5.6 million budget gap next school year.

N.y. Mayor Bloomberg, Nra Chief Take Battle Over Firearms To Tv
Richard Simon @
WASHINGTON — With the Senate expected to take up gun-control measures arising from last year's mass slayings at a Connecticut elementary school, advocates and opponents of stiffer gun laws vowed Sunday to step up their battle for political support.

Obama tries to push stalled immigration talks forward
Kathleen Hennessey @
WASHINGTON -- President Obama prodded congressional negotiators to reach agreement on a plan to overhaul the nation’s immigration laws, saying despite delays and disputes he still wants a bill to emerge soon and debate in the Senate to begin next month.