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THE NOONER for May 5, 2014
Tomorrow is the #BIGDAYOFGIVING in Sacramento, and we're going to fill up the chest for local charities. As participants in a very costly industry where money is raised for bleh reasons, helping those engaged in a higher endeavor is essential.
In addition to awesome local charities, Open California, which publishes Capitol Weekly and hosts public policy discussions in Sacramento, is taking part. Check out the participating charities here, and do your part between midnight tonight and midnight tomorrow. In addition to Open California, I've selected about a dozen to give to, spreading among charities serving the arts, homeless, domestic violence victims, and the environment.
Two more areas have had a series of women that I wrote about on Friday. One is in the district in which I wake up this morning, which has had Susan Davis, Christine Kehoe, Lori Saldana, and Toni Atkins. In Berkeley, we've had Dion Aroner, Loni Hancock, and Nancy Skinner. Elizabeth Echols has a legit chance to continue the chain in AD17. After conferring with guru Alex Vassar, we don't think there have been five in a row.
Anyway, down here in Sandy Eggo, the only big race is CA52, and we'll have lots of time this summer to talk about the November face off between Carl DeMaio (R) and incumbent Scott Peters (D). That race is as toss-up as you get. This is the region of the uncontested. Area incumbents facing no challengers include Melissa Melendez (R) in AD67, Marie Waldron (R) in AD74, Rocky Chavez (R) in AD76, Shirley Weber (D) in AD79, and Lorena Gonzalez (D) in AD80.
It's worth stating again that we need to close the write-in loophole. Write-in candidates can bypass the $952.91 filing fee (or 3,000 signatures) and get a place on the November ballot with only 40 signatures and 1 write-in vote, should only one candidate traditionally file for June. They should at least be required to get 40 votes to match the number of signatures required. As I wrote previously, a candidate "earned" a spot on the November ballot with only 3 votes in 2012.
Yesterday, I tried using my debit card at Fashion Island and was rejected. Union Bank tells me that my shopping at "Fascist Island" was very suspicious and that my card was flagged for extra scrutiny because it was in the DMV database breach made public last month. Chop chop, and I'll be getting a new card.
SOS: Pete Peterson for Secretary of State [LAT Endorsement] - "But both Cressman and Schnur are too focused on making the office a bully pulpit for political reform rather than addressing the more mundane tasks of the job. State Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) has immersed himself in the details of the job, meeting with most county election officials and introducing bills to ban campaign contributions in the final 100 days of the legislative session and to increase the frequency of campaign finance disclosures. Yet we are concerned that Padilla sees the job merely as a steppingstone to higher office, at a moment when California needs a secretary of state who is 100% committed to modernizing the office, creating more transparent political campaigns and helping increase the number of educated, engaged and voting citizens. We believe Peterson has the skills and passion to be the next secretary of state."
SPI: Marshall Tuck for Superintendent of Public Instruction [LAT Endorsement] - "Really, this editorial shouldn't exist. There should be no race for state superintendent of public instruction because it shouldn't be an elected position. The state Department of Education should be led by an appointee of the governor, just as the U.S. secretary of Education is appointed by the president to carry out the executive role of overseeing schools."
CA17 (Milpitas): Ro Khanna Offers Upgrade to Silicon Valley [SFChron Endorsement] - "Our endorsement of Ro Khanna is not so much a repudiation of Honda as a recognition of the opportunity for an upgrade for a congressional district defined by innovation, resourcefulness and a commitment to meritocracy. Khanna will help promote those values in a U.S. Capitol that desperately needs them." [Behind the scenes with Carla Marinucci]
From the editorial: "Has Honda reached out to those high-tech titans (Eric Schmidt of Google, Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook, Marissa Mayer of Yahoo among them) to find out why they were supporting Ro Khanna? Didn't Honda want and need to know where he was coming up short, or at least how he could be a more effective advocate for Silicon Valley concerns?"
Well, of those companies, only Yahoo (Sunnyvale) is located in CA17. Google HQ is in Mountain View, Facebook HQ is in Menlo Park, Marissa Mayer and Mark Zuckerberg live in Palo Alto, Sheryl Sandberg lives in Menlo Park, and Eric Schmidt lives in Atherton. All are in CA18, which is Anna Eshoo's district. Apple is located in the district (Cupertino), although CEO Tim Cook also lives in Palo Alto. There's a reason CA18's median family income is 17% higher than CA17's. Of course, CA17 is still #3 in the state behind CA18 and CA33 (Coastal LA).
The tension between the many working class residents of CA17 and the companies headquartered there is perfectly reflected in the race between Honda and Khanna.
AD10 (Marin-Sonoma): Race for Marin-Sonoma Assembly seat hotly contested [Derek Moore @ SRPD]
LEADERSHIP MATTERS: Pérez, Steinberg: A tense relationship — but productive [Anthony York @ CW]
BECAUSE PUTIN IS COMING? Five reasons you will want to vote on June 3 [Martin Wisckol @ OCR]
DOUBLE X FACTOR: Women lawmakers on decline in Sacramento [Samantha Gallegos @ SRPD]
Close the Gap California hopes to something about the decline in 2016.
#CAKEDAY: Light the candles for Larry Levine!
The June 2014 NOONER Contest is now open!
Once again, The NOONER is providing an opportunity for you to prove your chops as a forecaster of California elections or, like I do with March Madness, show how little most of us really know.
Your personalized NOONER contest link is:
Once again, it is designed so you can either be anonymous or have your name in lights. Last year, we had about 500 participants and I will once again only show the top 25 scores, but you'll be able to see your score and rank. You will be able to make your picks and change your answers (via same link) through Sunday, June 1 at 5pm PDT.
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
CalPERS Report: Pay Hike To Offset Pension Cuts? | Calpensions
Gov. Brown pushed a cost-cutting pension reform through the Legislature two years ago, arguing voters needed assurance that a tax increase on the November 2012 ballot would not be eaten up by soaring retirement costs.
Election 2014: GOP candidates talk immigration, Boehner, gun laws
The Editorial Board @ sacbee.com
The Bee’s editorial board met with the three Republican candidates challenging Democratic incumbent Ami Bera for California’s 7th Congressional District seat. They talked about how John Boehner has done as speaker of the House, about immigration reform and whether California should have to recognize gun laws from other states.
Janet Napolitano Talks Deportations, UC Diversity On News Conference
University of California President Janet Napolitano said she has been unfairly criticized for the number of immigration deportations that took place while she was secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. Napolitano said Sunday that critics have not looked at the "whole picture" regarding the numbers of deported immigrants under the Obama administration.
Elections 2014: Mcclintock Challenger Infuses Drama Into Contest For Safe GOP Seat
Christopher Cadelago @ sacbee.com
On the campaign trail, Republican Art Mooreâs candidacy has also intrigued many Democrats, who comprise 29 percent of the 4th Districtâs registered voters.
Broaden The Tax Base To Ease Disproportionate Dependence On The Rich
George Skelton @ latimes.com
Gov. Brown is banking on surplus funds for a rainy day, but leaders would be better off easing off on the wealthy to attract investment and jobs.
Panama Vice President — An Opposition Candidate — Is Elected President
Cesar Cardenas, Tracy Wilkinson @ latimes.com
Opposition candidate Juan Carlos Varela heads to victory in Panama's presidential election after an unusually tight race.
Neel Kashkari pumps $500,000 into campaign, releases TV ad
David Siders @ blogs.sacbee.com
Republican Neel Kashkari, lagging behind GOP rival Tim Donnelly in the race for governor, released his first TV ad Monday and announced he has donated $500,000 to his own campaign.
California To Schools: Students Dont Have To Pay For Graduation Attire, Other Items integral To Education
Loretta Kalb @ sacbee.com
Ricardo Placensia, at near left with red and gold lei, holds hands with his brother Roberto during prayers at their June 2013 graduation from Verbum Dei High School in Los Angeles.
Liberal Donors Eye New Long-term Investments In States And New Voters To Boost Democrats
A group of wealthy liberal donors who helped bankroll the Center for American Progress and other major advocacy groups on the left is developing a new big-money strategy that could boost state-level Democratic candidates and mobilize core party voters.
As California property values rise, owners see big tax bill hikes
Dan Walters @ blogs.sacbee.com
The revival of California's economy and a rising housing market mean some hefty property tax increases for homeowners, the Legislature's budget analyst believes.
The Buzz: For Calderon campaigns, it’s all in the family
Jeremy B. White and Alexei Koseff @ sacbee.com
Former lawmaker Charles Calderon has gotten $60,000 in loans for his campaign to become a Los Angeles Superior Court judge from a single source: his son Ian Calderon, a first-term assemblyman who is the fourth Calderon in the last decade to hold a seat in the Legislature.
Common Core Is Latest Front In Decades-long Education Wars | Edsource Today
In the decades before and right after World War II, the battles centered largely on progressive education, which in the eyes of some on the right during the Cold War was a communist plot.
California City Looks To Sea For Water In Drought
ALICIA CHANG @ sacbee.com
In this April 25, 2014 photo, Joshua Haggmark, interim resources manager for Santa Barbara, Calif., stands next to a desalination plant, which removes salt from ocean water, that has been in storage for more than two decades in Santa Barbara, Calif. The city is considering restarting the plant as California withers in a drought.
FBI reportedly eyed Joe Montana, then dropped probe
Montana, the Hall of Fame quarterback who has dabbled in development deals since retiring from football after the 1994 season, was contacted by an undercover FBI operative about an unspecified business proposition during the Yee-Chow investigation, according to one source familiar with the case. Fear that Montana's name would bubble up as part of the FBI's corruption probe is among the reasons U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer plans to issue a protective order barring prosecutors and defense attorneys involved in the corruption case from disclosing certain evidence to the public, including wiretaps and recordings, according to sources. The protective order was foremost on the minds of defense lawyers in the Yee-Chow case when, after hearing from Breyer, they huddled in the attorneys' lounge on the second floor of the federal courthouse on Golden Gate Avenue to discuss legal strategy. Attorneys' chatIt was there that James Brosnahan, attorney for one of the defendants, former San Francisco school board President Keith Jackson, told his colleagues that Montana was among those the government was looking to shield from unfair scrutiny, multiple sources say. Wittek was convicted of bank fraud by a federal jury in 1992 after he helped a business associate secure an illegal loan to buy a North Carolina savings and loan.
For President Obama, A Renewed Focus On Climate
Alex Wong/Getty Images - President Obama wipes sweat off his face as he unveils a plan on climate change last June at Georgetown University. His aides say he sees the issue as part of his legacy.
Political Blotter: Jerry Brown is Mexico-bound
Josh Richman @ mercurynews.com
Gov. Jerry Brown plans a trade mission to Mexico this July; also, controversial Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio will speak in Silicon Valley.
CalPERS recovers $12.75 million in lawsuit over collapse of Lehman Brothers
Dale Kasler @ sacbee.com
CalPERS said today it has recovered $12.75 million in a settlement with accounting firm Ernst & Young over claims stemming from the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008.
Ballots Arriving By Mail Signal Start Of California Primary Season
Jean Merl @ latimes.com
California's primary season shifts into high gear Monday when county registrars start sending mail ballots to voters who want to mark their choices before election day.
Up In The Air: The Future Of Drones In San Diego | Voice Of San Diego
San Diego’s been dubbed the “hub of the U.S. drone industry.”
Liability For Quake Losses A Big Concern For L.A. Property Owners
The question of whether property owners can be held liable for earthquake losses bears heavily on Los Angeles.
Amgen: Lots Of Twists, And A Wrong Turn, In Sacramentos Cycling History
James Raia @ sacbee.com
Lance Armstrong’s crash in the 2010 Tour of California forced him to withdraw from the race, something he had not done before until the accident near Visalia.
Dan Walters Daily
Alexei Koseff @ blogs.sacbee.com
What happens if they held an election and nobody came?, Dan wonders.
Bryan Singer And Gary Goddard Targeted In New Sex Abuse Lawsuit
Ryan Faughnder @ latimes.com
"X-Men" director Bryan Singer and producer Gary Goddard have been hit with another lawsuit that claims they sexually assaulted a teenager.