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THE NOONER for November 25, 2014




Happy Turkey Tuesday, again from The Nooner's Portland office. The most difficult thing here is remembering that you have a god-given right here not to pump your own gas. Oregonians love it, and gas is actually cheaper here, even with the fueling assistance. Although, it used to be that the law kept you from leaving your car. Now they generally tell you to get out of your car and pay inside before they are required to pump for you. Quirky.

Today's forecast: "Not Unworthy-Umbrella Worthy." I am serious that was the language used on the news.

SCOCAL: Leondra R. Kruger appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown to state Supreme Court [Maura Dolan @ LAT] - "In choosing Kruger, Gov. Jerry Brown once again picked an unconventional candidate without judicial experience. Kruger, 38, grew up in Los Angeles County but spent most of her adult life outside the state. She will be the one of the youngest justices in modern times to serve on the court, and some legal analysts say she may one day end up on the U.S. Supreme Court."

Jerry Brown, whose 1.0 term had the blemish of a three-justice removal by the voters (after he had left office), has now redefined the court again, although in a much different way. He has appointed an Asian-American, a Latino, and an African-American. While I don't have time this morning to survey all the states' highest courts, I'd bet we have the most diverse supreme court in the nation, and the smartest.

The appointment settles the criticism aimed at the governor's office when he appointed Goodwin Liu to fill the position vacated by Carlos Moreno. Both Latino and African-American communities were disappointed at Liu's appointment as neither had seats on the state's highest court, while Asian-Americans gained a majority of the 7 seats. Reportedly, the administration essentially said "wait, we'll have more."

And, Governor Brown delivered. With the next appointment Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, legal scholars are astonished about the team that has been assembled. This is a Super Bowl/World Series/Stanley Cup team on our state's highest court, from various political perspectives.

Assuming Kruger is confirmed as expected by the three-member committee, we have a court with a continued female majority, a Filipino-American chief justice, 3 Asian-Americans, 2 whites, 1 Latino and 1 African-American. Beyond their demographics, I would argue that this is by far the smartest state highest court in the nation.

Goodwin Liu (a Democratic appointee), who had been caught up in the black hole of U.S. Senate confirmation for a Ninth Circuit appointment is known as the workhorse of the court, while chief justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye (a Republican appointee) carries the political fight for court funding and tries to unify judiciary divided over statewide versus local determination. 

Frankly, from whatever political or legal stripe, we should look to McAllister with great respect and hope. That's a brilliant bench, built by three governors from two parties, brilliantly educated, and responsive and respective to their role.


AD39 (East San Fernando):

  • Patty Lopez (D) - 22,750
  • Raul Bocanegra (D-inc.) - 22,283

AD66 (Torrance):

  • David Hadley (R) - 54,401
  • Al Muratsuchi (D-inc.) - 53,695

#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Jimmy Gomez and Joel Olsson!




  • Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez is seeking a legislative aide. The position requires strong analytical and writing skills, attention to detail, excellent organization, multi-tasking ability and English language proficiency. Capitol experience is preferred. Candidates should be strategic thinkers who can work cooperatively and enthusiastically in a team environment. Please send cover letter and resume to

  • You are invited to join Capitol Network for our Annual Holiday Luncheon and Elections on Tuesday December 9, 2014 from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm.  The luncheon is FREE for Capitol Network members with a donation of diapers (size 4 - 6) and/or feminine hygiene products, $30 for Capitol Network members without a donation, and $35 for Non-Members with a donation of diapers (Size 4-6) and/or feminine hygiene products.

    Please register at no later than TUESDAY DECEMBER 2.  Advance registration is required for all attendees. Please contact Amanda Levy at or 915-595-8755 with any questions.

  • California Voices for Progress is seeking a State Director to work with influential people to fight for policies that combat climate change, promote economic and educational opportunity for low-income and middle class Americans, and strengthen democracy. The Director will lead the state office and work with members to take action on policy priorities at the federal and state level.
  • The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network is seeking an experienced well-qualified advocate to direct its state legislative program. The State Legislative Director will serve as ACS CAN’s primary lobbyist at the State Capitol responsible for developing and executing its legislative agenda. Requires expertise in health policy, especially the Affordable Care Act, Medi-Cal and other access to care issues, and substantial experience working at State Capitol as legislative staff and/or lobbyist. Minimum salary: $85,000. For further details and to apply please visit:



How To Blow Nine Congressional Districts :: Fox&hounds
Three structural reasons also contributed to the Republican losses in several of these districts.

Ballot Order Scrutinized In 39th Assembly District Race | The Sacramento Bee
Jeremy B. White @
Did ballot order cost an incumbent assemblyman his seat?

Big Elections With Little Journalism - Sfgate
David Sirota @
On a warm October night toward the end of the 2014 campaign, almost every politician running for a major office in the swing state of Colorado appeared at a candidate forum in southeast Denver. The topics discussed were pressing: a potential war with ISIS, voting rights, a still-struggling economy. But one key element was in conspicuously short supply: the media.

Neophyte Patty Lopez Takes Raul Bocanegra's California Assembly Seat
After weeks of vote tallying, political neophyte Patty Lopez has unseated incumbent Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, a fellow Democrat, in an upset that has sent shock waves beyond their San Fernando Valley district.

Gov. Jerry Brown Names Obama Administration Lawyer To California Supreme Court | The Sacramento Bee
David Siders @
Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday nominated a deputy assistant attorney general in the Obama administration to the California Supreme Court, continuing to recast the high court with Democratic appointees from outside the judiciary.

Election Turnout In State Was Far Worse Than Previous Low - Sfgate
John Wildermuth @
Blame part of it on a boring election, DiCamillo said.

Governor Brown nominates Leondra Kruger to California Supreme Court
Governor Jerry Brown announced today his nomination of Leondra R. Kruger for a spot on the California Supreme Court. If confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments, Kruger would fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Associate Justice Joyce Kennard.

Survey: A Divide Over Immigration Plan :: Fox&hounds
Of course, Fresno may not be a model test market for political ideas, especially on the immigration issue. California leads the country in the number of immigrants who have entered the country illegally and therefor the issue of immigration has a different context here than in other states in the union.

Opinion: Plastic Bag Referendum Is No-lose Situation | The Sacramento Bee
Dan Walters @
After all, dozens of cities have already imposed plastic bag bans of their own, and a recent poll by the University of Southern California and the Los Angeles Times found that voters support a statewide ban by a nearly 2-1 margin.

The GOP's shameful lawsuit against Obamacare
The lawsuit the House GOP filed against President Obama on Friday opened a new front in the attack on the 2010 healthcare law, this time targeting the subsidies that reduce deductibles, co-pays and other out-of-pocket expenses faced by lower-income Americans. According to the complaint, the...

Governor Names Top Obama Administration Lawyer To California Supreme Court
Howard Mintz @
The governor on Monday nominated Leondra Kruger, a 38-year-old deputy attorney general who would be the state Supreme Court's first African-American justice since former Justice Janice Rogers Brown moved to a federal appeals court in 2005.

Obama's Immigration Action Creates An Opening For Scam Artists Too
President Obama's executive action on immigration last week created a pathway for millions of people in the country illegally to win work permits and live without fear of deportation.

California Pension Fund Bonus Payouts Climb 14% From Prior Year - Bloomberg
Michael B. Marois @
The fund, known as Calpers, paid $8.7 million in bonuses to investment staff in the year ended June 30, and almost $300,000 to four non-investment executives, according to data provided by the system. The rewards are based on three-year performance verses a benchmark, as well as the earnings of each asset class and individual portfolios, said spokesman Brad Pacheco.

President Sets Immigration Enforcement Priorities, Still Gives Discretion To Border Agents | 89.3 Kpcc
Southern California Public Radio @
A US Border Patrol agent stands near a crossing to Mexico at the San Ysidro port of entry along the US-Mexico border near San Diego. FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

Rep. Mike Honda Schools Sen. Rand Paul
By Josh Richman Monday, November 24th, 2014 at 9:39 am in Barack Obama, Immigration, Mike Honda, Obama presidency, Rand Paul, U.S. House, U.S. Senate.

Neophyte Patty Lopez takes Raul Bocanegra's California Assembly seat
After weeks of vote tallying, political neophyte Patty Lopez has unseated incumbent Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, a fellow Democrat, in an upset that has sent shock waves beyond their San Fernando Valley district.

Santa Clara On The Hook For $2 Million In Super Bowl Events Despite Huge San Francisco-based Fundraising Haul
Mike Rosenberg @
Santa Clara officials on Monday unveiled a $2 million package of about a dozen events leading up to the February 2016 game at the new Levi's Stadium, headlined by a parade and fireworks extravaganza. But the city will have to start from scratch to raise private money for the showcase -- and if that campaign falls short, taxpayers will be on the hook.

Wall Street Chides Top California Insurers For Obamacare Network Errors
Two leading health insurers drew new fire from Wall Street for overstating their Obamacare doctor networks and trying to deflect the blame.

Bocanegra, Muratsuchi Lose California Assembly Races | The Sacramento Bee
Jeremy B. White @
The final tally has the two incumbents losing by fewer than 1,000 votes apiece. Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, D-Torrance, lost by 706 votes to Republican challenger David Hadley. And in a widely dissected upset, newcomer Patty Lopez held on to defeat Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, D-Los Angeles. A Democrat, Lopez edged out Bocanegra by 467 votes.

Ferguson Decision: Sadness And Anger In L.A.
As details of the grand jury decision in Ferguson, Mo., trickled out Monday night, many in Los Angeles braced for a painfully familiar outcome.

Thousands Of UC Students Walk Out To Protest Tuition Hikes - Sfgate
Carolyn Jones @
Thousands of

Lawsuits Accuse Costa Mesa Of Trying To Drive Out Sober-living Homes
Two lawsuits filed in federal court last week allege Costa Mesa discriminated against recovering drug and alcohol addicts by crafting regulations meant to drive them out of town.

Slideshow: East La Legend Ed Roybal Receives Nation's Highest Civilian Honor | 89.3 Kpcc
Southern California Public Radio @
President Obama awarded the nation’s highest civilian honor to the late East L.A. congressman Edward Roybal on Monday, calling him a hero not just for Latinos but for all Americans.

Would Ethanol Help The Environment? Obama Administration Can't Decide
As President Obama looks to take legacy-defining actions while facing a hostile Congress , one of his more challenging decisions involves what goes into the fuel tanks of America’s cars.

DCCC responds to Limbaugh lawsuit threat
Hadas Gold @
Limbaugh is threatening the DCCC with a lawsuit over a blast email they sent supporters.