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THE NOONER for November 26, 2013

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  • CD09 (San Joaquin): added retired marshall Tony Amador (R)
  • CD09 (San Joaquin): added businessman Steve Colangelo (R)
  • CD26 (Ventura): moved from Likely Democrat to Leans Democrat
  • SD28 (Coachella Valley): added attorney Phillip Drucker (D)
  • CORR: AD33 (Apple Valley): added Apple Valley councilmember Art Bishop (R)
  • AD44 (Ventura): removed Assemblymember Jeff Gorell (R)
  • AD44 (Ventura): added chamber executive Sean Paroski (R)

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Yesterday, Assemblymember Jeff Gorell (R) sent out an e-mail announcing he was shifting his 2014 target from Assembly to CD26, taking on frosh congresswoman Julia Brownley (D). Included on his endorsement list is neighboring congressman Buck McKeon (R), who is expected to retire and support Tony Strickland (R) to succeed him in CD25. 

Now that the CD26 race is set, eyes shift over to CD25, where McKeon has not announced his retirement and where Strickland is being quiet. With Strickland in, it is very likely another strong Republican will emerge for the race, notably George Runner, Cameron Smyth, or Scott Wilk. I've had Smyth as a likely candidate for awhile, and believe he is the most likely among the three.

In AD44, the shift means that both parties need to re-examine their game, and without Gorell the seat inches toward being a toss-up. And, in the scramble to keep a two-thirds supermajority, having a playing field of three (AD36, AD44, AD65) is better than two.

Obama won this seat with 52.4% in 2012 and, with the right candidate, it can be competitive for Democrats, although Gorell may be doing the party a favor by leaving it open in an off-cycle

For Democrats, in addition to 2012 congressional candidate David Cruz Thayne (who has already announced), some of the names being mentioned include 2012 senate candidate and Oxnard port commissioner Jason Hodge, Thousand Oaks councilmember Jacqui Irwin, and Ventura supervisor John Zaragosa.

On the Republican side, Camarillo chamber governmental relations exec Sean Paroski jumped in yesterday. Paroski is a former field rep for Tony Strickland. Gorell's district director and former Fillmore councilmember Ernie Villegas had been seen as a successor to the seat, although now he could stay with Gorell and hope to earn a trip to Washington with a young GOP congressman.

SD28 (Coachella Valley): Harkey Drops Legislator vs. Legislator Lawsuit [John Hrabe @ CalNewsroom] = "A Republican state lawmaker that filed a $10 million defamation lawsuit against another Republican lawmaker has asked the court to dismiss the case. Assemblywoman Diane Harkey, R-Dana Point, requested on November 12 that the Orange County Superior Court dismiss her lawsuit against State Senator Mark Wyland, R- San Diego, without prejudice, according to court records obtained by" 

Conservative Leads Effort to Raise Minimum Wage in California [Jennifer Medina @ NYT] - "[A]fter decades in the conservative movement, Mr. [Ron] Unz is pursuing a goal that has stymied liberals: raising the minimum wage. He plans to pour his own money into a ballot measure to increase the minimum wage in California to $10 an hour in 2015 and $12 in 2016, which would make it by far the highest in the nation. Currently, it is $8 — 75 cents higher than the federal minimum.

Fixing DC: California's innovations can help [Lenny Mendonca and Thomas V. McKernan @ CAFWD] - "In California in 2003, passing these reforms looked as unlikely as passing them in Washington, DC looks now. But with strong citizen engagement, civic leadership and belief in the possibility of change, these reforms can shift partisan politics throughout the nation as well. Good governance matters, citizens deserve and should demand it."

#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Dustin Call, Pete Conaty, and Jason Murphy!



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  • Pacific McGeorge's Mike Belote Annual Endowed Capital Center Lecture Series presents "Protecting Individual Privacy in the Internet Age" Thursday Dec. 5 at 5 p.m. Sutter Club, 1220 9th Street. Free, Register at:
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Barack Obama Presses For Immigration Changes
David Siders @
President Barack Obama pressed House Republicans to make changes to the nation's immigration laws Monday, seeking to refocus attention away from a federal healthcare overhaul whose bungled rollout has damaged him politically.

Projected State Budget Surpluses Could Disrupt Tax Initiatives :: Fox&hounds
The budget projections offered by the Legislative Analyst last week could throw a monkey wrench into the plans of those who are seeking tax increases on the 2014 ballot.

Dismissed! Harkey Drops Legislator vs. Legislator Lawsuit
John Hrabe @
Assemblywoman Diane Harkey has dropped her $10 million defamation lawsuit against State Senator Mark Wyland

Top Legislators Join Critics Of Proposed Regs For New Funding Formula
John Fensterwald @
In a letter on Monday, leaders of the state Senate and Assembly criticized proposed regulations on state funding for the state’s neediest students as inconsistent with the intent of the new school finance law.

California Health Insurance Decision Has Political Fallout
Dan Walters @
The implementation of the federal health care program popularly known as Obamacare will obviously affect the lives and finances of tens of millions of Americans.

Supreme Court will take up new health law dispute
Mark Sherman @
The Supreme Court has agreed to referee another dispute over President Barack Obama's health care law, whether businesses can use religious objections to escape a requirement to cover birth control for employees.

Gorell Says He'll Challenge Brownley In 26th Congressional District
Timm Herdt @
Republican Assemblyman Jeff Gorell announced Monday that he intends to run for Congress next year, challenging freshman Democratic Rep. Julia Brownley in the 26th Congressional District.

ID Verification Lagging on Health Care Website
s licenses, Social Security cards and voter registration cards to

S.F. in-law proposal would make units legal
Board of Supervisors President David Chiu wants to bring these units, often home to low-income immigrant families, out of the "shadow economy" with a proposal to legalize all of San Francisco's existing in-laws, for a nominal fee. Rent control would apply to units in buildings that are subject to it, and tenants would receive existing city protections, such as relocation assistance if they are forced to move. "The purpose of the legislation is really threefold: to respond to the housing crisis, ensure building safety and tenant safety, and to provide clarity and transparency to property owners on their obligations," Chiu said. The legislation, he said, will protect tenants and, he hopes, add vacant units to the city's tight housing market. Supervisor Scott Wiener earlier this year introduced legislation to allow construction of in-law units in the Castro, a step he framed as a pilot project that could help build support for a citywide law.

GOP Assemblyman Jeff Gorell To Challenge Rep. Julia Brownley
Jean Merl @
GOP Assemblyman Jeff Gorell announces plans to challenge Rep. Julia Brownley in her eastern Ventura County district.

With public approval at an all-time low, Barack Obama looks to rally support in California
David Siders @
Beset by criticism of the federal healthcare overhaul and with his public approval rating at an all-time low, President Barack Obama arrived in California on Monday seeking to shift attention to immigration and the economy, issues around which he has traditionally managed to rally fellow Democrats

SF seeks injunction to stop CCSF closure
City Attorney Dennis Herrera asked a judge Monday to block a commission from shutting down City College of San Francisco by revoking its accreditation next summer, saying the commission's review was marred by conflicts of interest and driven by a political agenda to limit access to community colleges. The private, nonprofit commission, based in Novato, is one of six regional agencies, overseen by the U.S. Department of Education, that provide accreditation for two-year community colleges. State college officials have replaced the school's elected trustees with a special trustee, Robert Agrella, who has appealed the commission's decision but opposes Herrera's lawsuit and another suit filed in September by the faculty union, the California Federation of Teachers. In Monday's request for an injunction, Eisenberg, the city's lawyer, claimed the panel was motivated by its opposition to the "open access mission of community colleges - to provide educational opportunities for anyone, regardless of income or ability."

Report: Calif. losing its edge in higher education
More attention must be paid to the California State University system and to the state's community colleges if California is going to produce the educated workers its economy needs, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom says in a report set to be issued Tuesday.

Report: California losing its edge in higher education
SAN FRANCISCO -- More attention must be paid to the California State University system and to the state's community colleges if California is going to produce the educated workers its economy needs, Lt.

New Pitch for Health Initiative: Mind Your Mom. Get Insured.
To encourage enrollment by the young Americans who are crucial to the success of the Affordable Care Act, insurers are appealing to their primary health care advisers: their mothers.

Fisker Automotive Failure Could Hit U.S. Taxpayers For Years To Come
Tom Hals @
The bankruptcy of Fisker Automotive could end up costing the U.S. government much more than the $168 million it loaned to the maker of the Karma plug-in hybrid sports car. According to its bankruptcy filing on Friday, Fisker owns tax breaks worth $320 million.

Judge's rulings halt California's high speed rail plans
(11-25) 15:30 PST Sacramento -- SACRAMENTO - A Sacramento judge put the brakes on California's plans to build a bullet train following duel rulings Monday that blocked the sale of $8 billion in bonds and ordered the rail authority to rewrite its funding plans for the massive project. Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Michael Kenny ruled that there was "no evidence in the record" to support the California High-Speed Rail Authority's request last March to sell the bonds from Prop. 1A, a $10 billion measure approved by voters in 2008 that green-lighted the bullet train project. In a separate but related case, the judge sided with the Kings County Board of Supervisors and two homeowners, who sued the rail agency for failing to meet legal requirements in its 2011 funding plans prior to seeking bond money to begin construction.

Obama Uses Heckler To Make Point On Immigration
Christi Parsons and Kate Linthicum @
President Obama, on a California fundraising swing, uses a heckler's taunts to make a point about his goal of an immigration overhaul.

Egypt Police Fire Water Cannons On Protesters Testing New Law
Laura King @
Egypt's new anti-protest law got its first test as dozens of demonstrators gathered in the capital to protest police tactics.

Federal Agency Opens Door For Regional Grants Foster Job, Economic Growth
Mark Glover @
A regional job creation plan devised by Next Economy, a business-led effort to foster economic growth in the greater Sacramento area, has been approved as a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, or CEDS, by a federal agency.