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THE NOONER for June 6, 2013
OBSCENE: Obama Defends Phone-Record Tracking as 'Critical Tool' - "Former officials described the practice after a published account on the gathering of complete phone records from all U.S. customers, including landline and wireless accounts, was published Wednesday." DiFi plays her role and defends the collection of your conversations.
Fortunately, I have AT&T, so none of my calls go through anyway.
The field has been certified for the July 23 runoff:
Which requires me to revise my premature thoughts on the race yesterday. Paul Leon has dropped his no party preference registration, which I believe will actually hurt his chances of making it to the runoff against 7 Democrats and 1 Republican. While I don't think we know the long term fate of "no party preference" candidates, an off-year special election is a tough time to rise above the pack.
Manuel Saucedo is up with signs already around the district, and has picked up the endorsement of former Congressman Joe Baca. From what I can recall, this is the first "three-way" split of the Democratic politics in the region, with Gloria Negrete McLeod supporting Dani Soto and Norma Torres endorsing Freddie Rodriguez. A fourth Democrat, Jason Rothman, has important family ties (dad is mayor of Pomona) and has the only education ballot label.
This will be a brutal primary and the turnout is probably about as brutully low as 10%, which was the turnout in the special in the overlapping SD32 on May 14 (10.42% in run-off; 9.15% in primary). If we project similar turnout in AD52, that's only 17,707 votes! On average, the 9 candidates will average 1,967 votes each. In fact, the five "higher tier" candidates--including Leon, Rodriguez, Rothman, Saucedo, and Soto--will probably split a combined 80% of the vote, meaning that the top two will be in the 3,000 vote range. If anyone tries to spin you that their candidate is in the clear lead, don't believe them. This will very likely be a nail biter.
ALL ABOUT THE G-MEN THING: Actually, we have little additional information on the FBI's interest in the State Capitol. The search warrant is sealed and all we know is that it's part of a broader Los Angeles-centered corruption investigation. Yes, there were rumors abound yesterday that the FBI wanted to talk to between four and twelve other people (possibly legislators), but that is unconfirmed. It's also possible that some of those were simply names included in the warrant, given that staff members belongings were likely searched when the warrant was executed.
From the Latino Legislative Caucus:
"Yesterday, the Sergeant at Arms informed us that the FBI had served warrants in the Capitol. However, despite media reports to the contrary, those warrants DID NOT include searches of the offices of the Latino Legislative Caucus (Room 511) . . . The nature of the warrants is under seal, and thus far no information on the affidavit in support of the warrants has been disclosed . . . In any event, the Latino Legislative Caucus stands ready to assist the Justice Department in whatever way it can to bring this matter to a speedy resolution."
Senate Sergeant At Arms Tony Beard had originally said the caucus office was searched, but confirmed yesterday that it was instead a Calderon satellite office.
Lots of people are speculating on what and who are the subjects. One thing is pretty clear at this point--this is no Shrimpscam, and is likely contained to Los Angeles. If it turns out to be the ongoing water district fights in Los Angeles, Anthony York gives us this link to a 2012 story that's a good explainer.
Meanwhile, the topic has distracted everyone from the fact that we're now 9 days from the "no budget-no pay" deadline. We're still hearing that it will be wrapped by next Thursday or Friday, although lots of work (at least in public) remains to be done. Conference committee is taking today off, and then will be meeting tomorrow and Saturday.
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
John Garamendi Defends Defense In His District
Carolyn Lochhead @ blog.sfgate.com
Wednesdayâs Wall Street Journal singled out Rep. John Garamendi, a Walnut Grove Democrat known for opposing excessive military spending, for fighting to preserve high-altitude drones because the pilots who operate them work at Beale Air Force base in his district.
Debate Over California's Prop. 13 Still Hot 35 Years Later
Dan Walters @ blogs.sacbee.com
Proposition 13, Howard Jarvis' iconic property tax limit measure, was passed by California voters 35 years ago this week - but the debate over its provisions is just as heated now as it was then.
Bill Lockyer Had The Right Stuff To Be Governor
George Skelton @ latimes.com
Lockyer, California's treasurer, never lost an election in 46 years and he knew how to get things done. But the timing never worked out for him.
Viewpoints: Should state close 'loophole' in health care law? Yes
The federal health care reform law, the Affordable Care Act, holds the promise of bringing potentially lifesaving coverage to millions of Californians if we all live up to our shared responsibility – individuals, government and businesses.
State workers do 'SEIU Shake' for raises
The union members, after intense campaigning for Proposition 30 tax hikes, want raises.
FBI's Ron Calderon Probe Has Lawmakers Feeling Somber
Patrick McGreevy @ latimes.com
Normally talkative lawmakers were somber and declined to comment on the investigation, while others worried about its effect on public confidence in state government.
For Assemblyman Luis Alejo, Session Involving Immigration Means A Full Circle
Local @ santacruzsentinel.com
Twenty years ago, Assemblyman Luis Alejo became aware of all the things that could happen to him.
Sen. Ron Calderon No Stranger To Political Fire
Laurel Rosenhall @ sacbee.com
Now a state senator who represents the Los Angeles community of Montebello, Calderon again finds himself under fire. His Capitol offices were raided Tuesday by FBI agents who carried out several boxes of material but would not discuss the nature of their investigation.
Lessons From The Gold Rush And Ceqa Reform :: Fox&hounds
As quoted in the San Jose Mercury News, Governor Brown said, “By the way, the Gold Rush was the best stimulus program ever invented; 300,000 people came from every country in the world, got a shovel and pick and started picking. They got billions into the economy. Federal Reserve didn’t even exist. The federal government wasn’t even heard from, so far away. They dug and they got gold, they spent it and more and more people came and they haven’t stopped.”
Viewpoints: Should state close 'loophole' in health care law? No
While sponsors of Assembly Bill 880 suggest it would affect only a few large and profitable companies, the facts are quite different. This legislation would have a broad and devastating impact on organizations in nearly every industry in this state, including nonprofits such as the Community College Foundation.
FBI looking at Calif. lawmaker's water legislation
The FBI investigation of state Sen. Ron Calderon involves legislation he introduced for a Los Angeles-area water district that uses his brother as a consultant, according to two people questioned by federal agents.
Costa Mesa Votes To Outsource Its Jail
Bradley Zint @ latimes.com
Costa Mesa has voted to outsource its 32-bed jail, a move that will save the city $3 million over five years.
Column Extra: California State Unions Veer Around 'jerry Brown' - Capitol And California - The Sacramento Bee
Read The State Worker blog.
State workers want cut of tax hike
State labor groups are insisting that Gov. Jerry Brown return their robust support of his successful tax-hike initiative in November by rewarding them with pay increases.
California's First Lady Shies From The Title, Embraces Role As Adviser
Timm Herdt @ vcstar.com
The most influential woman in California government keeps a very low profile and, she says, is noticed in public only when she walks her much more recognizable dog.
Asian Leader Charges Latest Obama Ca Trip Evidence That Potus Taking Asians “for Granted” Here
Wyatt Buchanan, Michael Collier, Richard Dunham, Bob Egelko, Joe Garofoli, Marisa Lagos, Carolyn Lochhead, Carla Marinucci, @ blog.sfgate.com
Asian leader charges latest Obama CA trip evidence that POTUS taking Asians “for granted” here
Anne Gust Brown Discusses Life With Jerry, Role In Running State
Amy Chance @ blogs.sacbee.com
Anne Gust Brown, first lady and special counsel to Gov. Jerry Brown, was the focus Wednesday of a She Shares luncheon at Sacramento's Sutter Club. In an interview with Karen Breslau of the Dewey Square Group, she discussed her own career and life with the Democratic governor. Here are the highlights:
Senior Senate Republican Proposes Tougher Plan For Border Security
Lisa Mascaro @ latimes.com
A senior Senate Republican has proposed a new $6-billion border security amendment for the Senate immigration bill.
Same-sex marriage 'inevitable' most Americans say
David Lauter @ latimes.com
Even as they await rulings from the Supreme Court this month on the legal rights of gay and lesbian couples, supporters and opponents of same-sex marriage agree on one point –legal recognition has become inevitable.
Reform Prohibits New Supplemental Pensions | Calpensions
A little-known private firm that has sold customized supplemental pensions to dozens of California cities, including bankrupt Stockton and San Bernardino, is prohibited from selling more by a pension reform bill that took effect this year.
Sd Lawmakers Push Border, Labeling, Museum Bills Page 1 Of 2 | Utsandiego.com
Be relevant, respectful, honest, discreet and responsible. View terms
New grand jury report questions rationale of some Sequoia Healthcare District expenses
Bonnie Eslinger @ mercurynews.com
A new San Mateo County Civil Grand Jury report questions whether the Sequoia Healthcare District reaches too far in doling out some of the millions of dollars it annually collects from taxpayers.
Al Gore Calls Obama Administration's Collection Of Phone Records 'Obscenely Outrageous'
Aaron Blake @ washingtonpost.com
Former Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore on Wednesday night leveled some rare and harsh criticism at the Obama administration, attacking its reported collection of phone records for millions of Americans.