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THE NOONER for October 28, 2013

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  • AD26 (Tulare): added activist Ruben Macaraeno (D)

NOONER SUPPORTERS can download a spreadsheet of all candidates,
with district geography, analysis, and outlook.


RECALL: On Friday, I wrote about the effort of gun rights supporters to recall a sampling of legislators who voted for legislation regulating access to guns and ammunition. I further wrote that the proponents erred in selecting five Democrat legislators who are all Latino, providing ample, uh, ammunition, against the effort. None of the targets were authors of the bills cited as the most infringing.

Three of the five were elected in low-turnout special elections this year, meaning the quantity of signatures necessary to qualify a recall are far lower than for legislators elected in the November 2012 election. The fourth, Sharon Quirk-Silva, is the number two target of Republicans next year, and the fifth is Speaker John Perez, who proponents said they were targeting just to annoy him. I don't believe the impetus of the recall efforts was racist, although if I am a Republican strategist, I would go out of my way to appear not racist. After all, Darrell Steinberg carried the most sweeping of the gun bills, but is not a target.

Let's talk about the money. There are no contribution limits for either the proponents of the recall nor the officeholder who is subject of a recall effort. However, candidates running to replace the officeholder, if recalled, are subject to the $4,100 limit applicable to Senate and Assembly races between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2014. As with all state races, there are no limits to the amounts political parties may contribute to candidates.

Here's what makes this interesting. The "freedom from limits" to those subject to recall applies during both the qualification and, if qualified, the actual recall election. Thus, as soon as Sharon Quirk-Silva receives the formal notice of intent to recall, she may accept unlimited funds from those interested in keeping her in office.

While ABC union would be limited to giving her $8,200 next year ($4,100 each for top-two primary and general), the same union can give her $1 million this year. And, Quirk-Silva could spend all of that money up until the recall petitition fails to qualify or, if it does, until the recall election date. At that point, any amount left up to $8,200 can be transferred to the campaign for next year (even if the recall was successful).

Going into next year, Democrats have 55 seats, one above the two-thirds majority. To keep two thirds, they need to hold one of two vulnerable (AD65 or AD36), or pick up one of the challenging but possible Lean Republicans--AD40, AD44 or AD60

Lorena Gonzalez will not be recalled in AD80. Remember, no Republican even ran in the special earlier this year.

If I was a strategist that cared most about taking away the Democrats' two-thirds majority, the last thing I would want to do is buoy Sharon Quirk-Silva this year and load her guns for next year any earlier. After all the hard work and success in his short term as CAGOP chair, Jim Brulte can not be a happy camper about this strategy.

CD10: Jeff Denham open to House Democratic immigration bill - "In an interview on Univision's "Al Punto" set to air Sunday, Denham called the Democratic legislation unveiled earlier this month a "good solution" and said he was encouraging – and expecting – other like-minded House Republicans to come on board with the bill."

Of course, House leadership is not planning a vote this year.

CD17: 49ers heroes raise money for Ro Khanna [Josh Richman @ MercNews]:

"Keeping up with the news in Washington lately has made me deeply frustrated," Lott wrote. "Entrenched special interests have gummed up the works of Congress and nothing is getting done on behalf of the American people. I think it's time for new leadership, and just like there came a time to pass the torch from Joe to Steve, and from Alex to Colin, now is the time to pass the torch from Mike to Ro. We need new energy and bold ideas to confront the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century."

RETAIL: BART lobbying goes door-to-door [Matier and Ross @ SFChron] - "A host of local politicos lobbied behind the scenes for the unions during the recent BART strikes, but none came close to state Assemblyman Robert Wieckowski and Alameda County Supervisor Richard Valle - who went thumping on BART board member Tom Blalock's door one night, scaring his wife half out of her wits."

BIG BIRD: "Twitter tax break" could cost SF tens of millions more after IPO [James Temple @ SFChron]

AURAL PLEASURE: John Myers and Anthony York talk through the "mysterious" money path that the FPPC unraveled last week on the Capitol Connection podcast.

Friday's trivia answer and today's question are after the jump.



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  • Pacific McGeorge's Capital Speaker Series presents “Dark Money – The 11 Million Dollar Problem Defined” with Chip Nielsen and Lance Olson, Wednesday Nov. 13, Noon, $15 lunch, Sutter Club, 1220 9th Street. MCLE. Register at:
  • The fastest, most cost-effective way to learn the legislative process and effective advocacy. Veteran lobbyist Ray LeBov presents his introductory " Lobbying 101" and advanced "Lobbying 201" seminars October 31-November 1. $250 each. Valuable for principals / support staff at lobbying firms, organizations that employ lobbyists, public agencies. Info / or 916 442 5009.
  • CapitolTrack is hiring a full-time employee to work in our West Sacramento office. This position will provide technical support to current subscribers, conduct product demonstrations to potential clients, and manage data accuracy. Candidates must have strong presentation skills, be highly adaptable to working with new technology, and be very comfortable working in databases. More information at
  • Senior Director of Communications for UC Davis transportation and energy research programs -- Lead communications programs for the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies and its partners. Great job in a green community. Requires extensive experience in public communications and good supervisory skills. Prefer university work experience. Salary: $53K-$95.5K


FRIDAY'S TRIVIA: Which Supreme Court case likely would invalidate California Military and Veterans Code sec. 614 if challenged today?

FRIDAY'S ANSWER: Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397 (1989), in which the Court ruled 5-4 that Texas could not prosecute an activist under a state statute for burning an American flag at the 1984 Republican National Convention in Dallas.

TODAY'S QUESTION: Last week, CNET reported that Google was constructing a floating data warehouse at a former World's Fair site in whose Assembly district?

#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Senator Bill Emmerson and Assemblymember Richard Pan.


Latino Donors Set Sights On GOP Lawmakers Who Oppose Immigration Overhaul
A network of Latino donors that played a pivotal role in raising money for President Obama’s reelection is now focused on a new campaign: an effort to oust lawmakers who stand in the way of overhauling immigration laws.

Initiative Reform Needed In California
George Skelton @
Former Assembly speaker Brown finds himself up against voters' desire to alter California's direct democracy initiative process.

Pending Lawsuit, If Successful, Could Precipitate Monumental Changes
Seth Rosenblatt @
With all of the discussion around the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), the Common Core State Standards, and Smarter Balanced Assessments, we may be missing the biggest potential change to sweep California public education since Serrano v. Priest. This change could come from a small organization called Students Matter, which is targeting some very specific structural changes in California’s K-12 public education system. Founded by a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and inspired by the gross inequities that currently exist among public schools just in the San Francisco Bay Area, their first major initiative has resulted in the lawsuit Vergara v. California.

Tax on soda to be floated in San Francisco
[...] Wiener said a mounting body of research has documented the link between sugary beverages and obesity and diabetes - and that voters are willing to tax the sweet drinks if they know that the money will help keep kids healthy. Wiener's proposal would add a tax of 2 cents per ounce on all sugar-sweetened beverages, defined as drinks with 25 or more calories that have added sugary sweeteners and are less than 50 percent fruit or vegetable juice. The money would go toward health and exercise programs at city schools, recreation centers and nonprofit organizations that contract with the city. The funds would be earmarked specifically for "active" recreation programs at the city's Recreation and Park Department; lunch, nutrition, physical education and after-school activities at the San Francisco Unified School District; and food access and activity programs funded by the city's Public Health Department and the Department of Children, Youth and their Families.

Immigration: California Republican Rep. Denham Backs Overhaul Bill
Richard Simon @
California Rep. Jeff Denham is the first House Republican to join Democrats in co-sponsoring a broad immigration overhaul bill that would provide a path to citizenship for millions of immigrants in the country illegally.

Sacramento Binational Gay Couple's Marriage Among First To Be Federally Recognized
Stephen Magagnini @
Sacramento State professor emeritus Tom Knutson and his husband Phan Datthuyawat have told their “how we met” story hundreds of times, but it took on new importance when they recounted it to a federal immigration official during a 45-minute interview Oct.15.

Will Transit Challenge Derail Pension Reform?
Ed Mendel @
Bay Area Rapid Transit workers may begin making annual payments toward their pensions under a tentative deal that ended a strike last week. But they are still exempt from cost-cutting pension reforms, unless the state wins a lawsuit filed this month.

Republicans Press Advantage Over Healthcare Website
Joseph Tanfani @
Promising to press investigations into what went wrong, congressional Republicans on Sunday said that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius should leave over the website problems that have crippled the rollout of the Affordable Care Act.

Civic Leaders Mobilizing To Support La Schools Chief | Edsource Today
A University of California regent is gathering support from civic, business and philanthropic leaders to pressure the seven member Board of Education of the Los Angeles Unified School District to “make every effort” to retain the services of John Deasy, its embattled school superintendent.

Silicon Valley Advocacy Group Teams Up With Evangelicals, Business To Push Immigration Reform - Politics Blog
In an effort to refocus Congress on a high stakes issue that still hasn't been tackled, a coalition of conservatives, evangelicals and high tech will hit Washington tomorrow to underscore what they...

Fracking Activists To Protest Jerry Brown In Sf
By Josh Richman Monday, October 28th, 2013 at 10:33 am in energy, Environment, Global warming, Gov. Jerry Brown, Jerry Brown.

Migrant Education Programs Make Saturday School A Family Affair | Edsource Today
School on Saturday? Most students would protest such an intrusion on their free time, but for children of migrant workers, Saturday school is a family affair.

L.A. County Assessor Noguez Hit With More Charges In Bribery Scheme
Richard Winton @
Los Angeles County Assessor John Noguez and tax consultant Ramin Salari were each hit Monday with six additional charges stemming from their corruption case, Los Angeles County district attorney officials said.

State Of Jefferson Sees Renewed Interest -
At Yreka’s Greenhorn Reservoir, Brian Peterson and his young daughter take a stroll in the frosty morning air. Peterson runs, a pro-secession website. He moved to the area when he was 18 and got a job in the timber industry. He said the industry, and the town, aren’t what they used to be. And Peterson blames “activist environmentalists” colluding with the government.

Valley Republican Sen. Anthony Cannella Is A Longtime Supporter Of Immigrant Rights | Local News |
John Ellis @
Sen. Anthony Cannella

Wolverton: Paging Maynard Webb To Fix
Troy Wolverton @
To fix the site, the leader brought in a prominent technologist who rolled out new servers, changed the web host and installed a new backup system -- all while the site was still running. Within months, it was stable.

Gov. Brown Lays His Cards On The Table At Event For Bicycle Club Hotel
Marc Lifsher @
Brown says he attended the ceremony marking the construction of the Bell Gardens project because he comes from 'a long line of poker players.'

West Coast Climate Agreement Coming Monday | Siliconbeat
Dana Hull covers clean technology and energy policy for the San Jose Mercury News. She often writes about electric vehicles, the smart grid, the solar industry and California energy policy, from RPS goals to Gov. Jerry Brown's big dreams for distributed generation.

Near Lax, A Once Thriving Community Now Stuck In Economic Limbo
Dan Weikel @
Those still living in the once thriving community of Manchester Square near LAX find themselves now stuck in economic limbo.

Castro Valley Senior Care Facility Had License Suspended
Rick Hurd, Denis Cuff and Mike Rosenberg @
Authorities were aghast this weekend when they found 14 assisted-living home patients virtually abandoned, with bedridden seniors -- including amputees and elderly residents with dementia -- all but left to fend for themselves for two days.

Healthcare workers gather for prayer, blessings at White Mass in L.A.
Samantha Schaefer @
Named for the white lab coats worn by many in the medical profession, the event at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angeles has outgrown several churches that once hosted the mass.

Science Has Lost Its Way, At A Big Cost To Humanity
Michael Hiltzik @
Researchers are rewarded for splashy findings, not for checking accuracy. So lots of medical research has built on false ideas.

Covered California's Executive Director Faces Fiery Test
Tracy Seipel @
Now, Peter V. Lee, as executive director of Covered California, the state's new health exchange, has the daunting task of executing a key part of the new federal health care law in the nation's most populous state. And if the law succeeds here, many health care experts agree, it will likely succeed in other states.

Dozens Of La Unified Administrators Involved In Ipad Selection | Pass / Fail | 89.3 Kpcc
Annie Gilbertson @
Join Alex Cohen and A Martínez for a conversational and witty look at the issues people are buzzing about.