Around The Capitol

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THE NOONER for January 10, 2016

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Happy Sunday morning for another football day. Be glad you're indoors and not watching Seattle at Minnesota, where the temperature is currently -3 degrees. 



CA17 (Milpitas): How Mike Honda's campaign distorts Ro Khanna's record [Scott Herald @ MercNews] - "[T]here is something unfolding in the background of this campaign that matters more than [Ro} Khanna's ability to turn a construction union. That is this: There are signs of desperation in the [Mike] Honda camp, or at least the kind of thoughtlessness that urgency can foster."

CA30 (Coachella): Jeff Stone set to challenge Raul Ruiz [Jeff Horseman @ PE] - "Republican state Sen. Jeff Stone announced his candidacy for Congress on Saturday, Jan. 9, setting up a heavyweight contest between a veteran Inland lawmaker and a well-financed Democratic incumbent."

It is a free ride for Stone, since his Senate district is not up this year. 

Bay Bridge bike path questions could bring further delays [Jaxon Van Derbeken @ SFGate] - "The bicycle and pedestrian path on the Bay Bridge’s new eastern span — for nearly two years a bridge to nowhere, its completion held up in part by a belated design change — could miss its latest scheduled opening date of this summer because of questions about whether support components will be strong enough to do the job." 

CASH CROP: Mayor’s aide looks to become pot business player [Peter Hecht @ SacBee] - Daniel "Conway is the new managing partner of a startup marijuana industry investment and holding company – a firm unabashedly named Truth. The company is looking for opportunities to invest in – and potentially operate – pot-related businesses as California, which recently set new rules for medical marijuana, eyes recreational use through a 2016 ballot initiative."

"GRASS ROOTS": A lobbying rule to catch up with the times [Laurel Rosenhall @ CALmatters[ - "Now the state’s political watchdog agency is poised to vote on a rule that would catch up with the times. It would require groups that lobby state government to publicly report who they’re paying – and how much – for publicity blitzes, consultants and other efforts to influence decisions that go beyond the narrow definition of lobbying."

CH-CH-CH-CHANGES: Long ago, gun control was hard to do in California [Dan Morain @ SacBee] - "Sacramento politics were very different when [Antonio] Villaraigosa arrived in the Assembly from Los Angeles in 1995. Republicans controlled it and blocked most gun bills. Democrats took back control in the 1996 election, but remained hesitant to tangle with pro-gun forces. I was there and paying attention to gun control legislation. Villaraigosa was in the middle of it."

SHRIMP BOY: Final points on the ‘Shrimp Boy Chow’ case [Debra J. Saunders @ SFChron] - "From the start, this case has smacked of abuse on the part of the FBI and prosecutors. (This is the first column on case which I wrote in March 2014.) It was a high profile case in part because of the case against Democratic state Sen. Leland Yee. There were two parts to the case against Yee: One part (the corruption part) seemed to easy to establish; the other part, the international firearms trafficking, which was completely bogus."

I LOVE LA: Goodell: San Diego, St. Louis & Oakland failed [Kevin Acee @ SDUT] - "You knew it was coming, but still it knocks you back a step. Such was the report sent Saturday by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to the league’s teams saying that San Diego, St. Louis and Oakland had not provided adequate stadium solutions to keep the Chargers, Rams and Raiders in their respective home markets."

SKEWED VISION: Punditry grounded in myths [Dan Walters @ SacBee] - "One of the more entertaining aspects of covering California’s politics is monitoring the clumsy attempts of out-of-state pundits to explain its proclivities."


#CAKEDAY: Light those candles for IFPTE LOCAL 21's Rachel Richman! and Senate Republican Caucus consultant Doug Yoakam!



  • Subscribe to the Capitol Morning Report and closely follow who’s doing what each day in California government and politics. We list news conferences, legislative hearings, state board meetings and other events. Plus we add in community news and announcements from political campaigns. More info at

  • Planned Parenthood Affiliates of CA seeks two experienced Senior Campaign Organizers to work with the seven California Planned Parenthood affiliates through November 2016. Salary (DOE) and reimbursement of healthcare up to a cap. Details here.
  • THERE'S MUCH MORE TO EFFECTIVE LOBBYING THAN LEGISLATIVE ADVOCACY. Get the total picture of lobbying in California with Capitol veteran Ray LeBov's introductory Lobbying 101 and advanced Lobbying 201 seminars January 28-29. $250 each. Lobbying 101 covers the Legislative process and Legislative advocacy; Lobbying 201 explores time-tested principles / best practices in the equally critical areas of Budget, Regulatory Agency and Executive Branch advocacy plus Media Relations. Essential for lobbying firm principals / staff, organizations / agencies that employ lobbyists, newcomers to the profession. Information / registration: or 916 442 5009.
  • SEIU United Healthcare Workers-West Regional Political Organizers (Los Angeles and Bay Area). 85,000 member California healthcare union seeks strategic, progressive, motivated political organizers, 3-5 yrs political/union experience. Competitive salary and benefits package. Resume, letter, 3 references:

  • Planned Parenthood Affiliates of CA seeks two experienced Senior Campaign Organizers to work with the seven California Planned Parenthood affiliates  on campus  and electoral organizing through the November 2016. Three to five years and two election cycles experience as full time campaign staff required. Prior management experience preferred. Excellent salary (DOE) and cellphone/laptop stipend and reimbursement of healthcare up to a cap. Positions located in the south and north. Details here.


Asking Voters To OK Homeless Funding Would Take L.A. Into Uncharted Waters
A report released by city analysts this week set the cost of confronting Los Angeles' surging homelessness over the next decade at nearly $2 billion, a stark acknowledgment of the money and work required to help the nation's largest unsheltered population.

Same-sex benefits suit against FedEx can proceed, judge rules
[...] Schuett has gained a legal victory that may be significant to other same-sex couples: A federal judge has ruled that she can sue FedEx for the benefits. The company’s website promotes its “inclusive culture” and support of gay rights, and describes diversity as both “a smart business practice” and “simply the right thing to do.” The two women met at college, worked together at a local feminist publication called Women’s Voices, and found that they shared the same birthday, Oct. 9 — a good sign for a relationship, Schuette said. [...] she said, FedEx had treated us well. [...] the company said its pension benefits did not cover a survivor whose marriage to an employee was not legal when it was performed. In its historic decision one week after the couple’s wedding, the Supreme Court struck down that law and granted federal benefits to same-sex couples. On the same day, the court dismissed an appeal by Prop. 8’s sponsors challenging lower-court rulings that declared the 2008 measure unconstitutional, Since FedEx’s federally regulated pension plan was based on that law, Hamilton said, Schuett can sue the company for allegedly violating her rights under the law. Attorney Amy Whelan of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, one of Schuett’s lawyers, said because the facts of the case are not in dispute, the next step will be to ask Hamilton to find Schuett eligible for a pension without the need for a trial.

Punk Rock And Plato Are Touchstones For Incoming Assembly Speaker
Anthony Rendon was elected to the Assembly in 2012 and quickly learned the ways of the Capitol.

First Lady's State Of The Union Guests Are Nod To Obama's Campaigns - Politico
Edith Childs and Earl Smith both made an impact on the trail during President Obama's 2008 campaign.

Something Wrong In The Wild: Sea Lion Pups Washing Ashore Because Ocean Can't Support Them - The Orange County Register
• Weight: 700 pounds for males; 240 pounds for females

Roger Goodell Says NFL Stadium Proposals Are Not Viable In Oakland, St. Louis And San Diego
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, addressing the media on Dec. 2, has cleared the way for a vote on possible relocation to Los Angeles.

Punditry Grounded In Myths | The Sacramento Bee
Dan Walters @
Canards abound among out-of-state observers

At Motion Picture & Television Fund Retirement Home, An Unlikely Love Story Blooms
Anthony "Tony" Lawrence tried online dating and met someone, but nothing sparked.

Belongings of missing UC graduate student found on cliff near Point Reyes
Belongings of missing UC graduate student found on cliff near Point Reyes Search crews continued Sunday to look for a missing UC Berkeley graduate student after finding her car near Point Reyes Lighthouse in Marin County and later discovering some of her belongings on a cliff above the ocean, police said. U.S. park rangers found her white Mercedes-Benz near the lighthouse at Point Reyes at 9 a.m. Saturday, said Berkeley police Officer Jennifer Coats. Officials closed the last section of the road leading to Point Reyes Lighthouse to give searchers as much access as possible, said Point Reyes National Seashore spokesman John A. Dell’Osso. “The search is continuing today and I assume, depending on weather, we will have similar resources like yesterday, which included people on the ground from the Point Reyes National Seashore, Marin County Sheriff Search & Rescue​, Berkeley PD, (United State Coast Guard) helicopter support, possibly also CHP helicopter and water resources as well,” Dell’Osso said Sunday.

Air Regulator Law Panel Hears Proposal To Halt Porter Ranch Gas Leak
Today's high

Sinaloa Case Shows The Business Of Drugs |
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El Chapo Speaks | Rolling Stone
Rolling Stone @
"The laws of conscience, which we pretend to be derived from nature, proceed from custom." —Montaigne

Clinton Campaign Ad Targets Trump, Cruz On Foreign Policy - Politico
The ad paints Republican candidates' stances on foreign policy as 'backward' and 'dangerous.'

An American And A Muslim, But First Of All, A Journalist - San Francisco Chronicle
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Powerball Jackpot Climbs To Record $900 Million. How High Will It Go?
The Powerball jackpot grows to $900 million.

O.C. Watchdog: You Can Get Online Loans Within Minutes – At A Cost - The Orange County Register
Jason Berry and Stuart Hecker are well-versed in the promise – and the pitfalls – of online lending.

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Gun Control: Chris Christie Details 'evolution' On Guns - Politico
New Jersey's governor says he has learned from traveling around the country.

Bay Bridge bike path questions could bring further delays
The bicycle and pedestrian path on the Bay Bridge’s new eastern span — for nearly two years a bridge to nowhere, its completion held up in part by a belated design change — could miss its latest scheduled opening date of this summer because of questions about whether support components will be strong enough to do the job. Caltrans officials said Friday that the agency is looking into whether there is sufficient underpinning for a planned observation platform that would be built near the path’s terminus at Yerba Buena Island. The platform is the centerpiece of a project that bicyclist-advocate groups campaigned hard for when the state decided to replace the old eastern span after a section failed in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Since the bike path opened in March 2014, it has stopped 1,200 feet short of Yerba Buena. The three officials who form the panel overseeing the project — the heads of Caltrans and the California and Metropolitan transportation commissions — voted in May 2014 to scrap a design that incorporated a pair of angled steel braces rising from underneath the bridge to support the observation platform, which will extend about 35 feet from the span. Clive Endress, who at the time was the Caltrans architect working on the bridge, said the angled braces looked nothing like the rest of the bridge supports. The solution was to replace the two angled braces with three horizontal beams that look similar to other supports underneath the bridge. [...] Caltrans officials said last week that the eastern span project’s chief engineer, Brian Maroney, had raised questions about the cantilever support system. Before the latest delay, the bike path project already had its share of problems — incorrectly installed bolts used to hold down the railings snapped and had to be replaced, and many of its hollow steel deck sections were left out in the rain before construction. Caltrans officials were not able to say how much the agency had spent on the scrapped support structure for the observation platform. The agency ordered the South Korean company that fabricated the arms, Hansteel, to straighten out the steel supports, leading to a three-month delay in shipping the components to the U.S. Once the winter rains stop, the agency intends to resume construction — if the engineering review it has ordered because of project manager Maroney’s concerns finds that everything is OK. The final price for the bike path extension is $8 million, which will probably include the costs of reworking the support for the platform and any installation issues.