Around The Capitol

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THE Nooner for May 19, 2017

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Happy Friday folks! You made it!

Here at the Nooner Global Headquarters, our mild spring gives way to Sacramento heat this weekend to welcome the out-of-town attendeees at the Democratic Convention.

As I watch the convention, here are some of the questions for which I'll look for answers or hints thereof:

  • Regardless of whether the "establishment" or the "Berniecrats" win the state chair's race, will the party unify, or will the 2016 divide continue into 2018?
  • Outgoing chair John Burton has lots of speaking roles this weekend and is being honored for his service. Can he get through them without uttering the F word?
  • Will environmental activist and billionaire Tom Steyer run for governor? His organization NextGen is conducting a workshop today and is hosting a breakfast station tomorrow morning.
  • Are there any other yet-to-be announced candidates for governor? I have heard rumors, but nothing confirmed. There are several people to watch this weekend including people sitting on enough money to become instant contenders. Don't bother asking me for names...I am not saying anything.
  • Any signs whether Feinstein will follow through on a run for reelection next year at age 85? Feinstein is not attending convention.
  • If Feinstein doesn't run, will high-profile Adam Schiff do so?  Schiff has been all over the media in his role of ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee and is generally well liked in Washington although may not have the name ID that some other possible candidates. Schiff is keynoting the big Saturday night dinner.
  • How do the four announced candidates for governor (Chiang, Eastin, Newsom, and Villaraigosa) use their Saturday stage time? Is it more about the mess in Washington, DC or ideas for California?
  • Will Assemblymember Raul Bocanegra go Insane in the Brain at his hospitality event with the band Cypress Hill?

Controller Betty Yee made her pick in the chair's race--progressive Kimberly Ellis.

Overlapping with the convention is the convention of the California Young Democrats. Tonight, along with co-hosts the Sacramento County Young Democrats, CYD is hosting a welcome reception at Beacon at 930 K Street. The event is sponsored by the State Building and Construction Trades and runs from 9pm-12am.

THE GREAT DIVIDE? THe Merc News's Katy Murphy looks at the divide facing the party.

“We’re a huge success story despite the national problem,” said Bob Mulholland, a longtime adviser to the California Democrats, who said he expects the convention will be a celebration of the state party’s strength and dominance. “The fact that the voters have put Democrats in charge of everything — that’s a gold medal at the Olympics.”

But the annual convention also is sure to showcase divisions and drama from within — from the self-promotion of candidates for governor, declared and rumored, to an unusually contentious election for the state party chairmanship.

It's truly a split that hasn't been seen in the state party for years, and from the email spins I get, it is very contentious. Some of the most ardent Berniecrats swear that they will build their own party should they not win the chair's race. That's about as likely to happen as the creation of the State of Jefferson. 

Tonight, the Berniecrats are having a dinner with a speech by Congresssman Ro Khanna, who defeated incumbent Mike Honda last year.

Anyway, it will be interesting to see the response as candidates for chair and for governor appear at the various caucuses today and tomorrow. 



GAS TAX: Dan Walters writes about the recall effort of freshman senator Josh Newman over his gas tax vote. Walters writes that it's not really about the gas tax, but rather an opportunity for the GOP to regain relevance in a deeply blue state by killing the Democrats supermajority in a low-turnout special election. However, if gathering signatures takes too long, the recall would be punted to the June 5, 2018 primary election.

Meanwhile, Joel Fox asks whether the opposition to the gas tax has staying power.

JUSTICE? CALmatters's Laurel Rosenhall looks at the environmental justice focus of Jerry Brown and legislators in the Capitol, while asking whether the effort will succeed.



UC: The UC Board of Regents defended President Janet Napolitano in light of the scathing state audit. State auditor Elaiine Howell appeared before the board: “This is not an audit of the president. This is an audit of a process,” Howle told the regents. “The Office of the President is not doing a good job.”

LET THERE BE FLIGHT: The UC Board of Regents approved a cap on out-of-state and international students amid continuing concerns that in-state students are being squeezed out in favor of more lucrative non-resident students.

ROLLER COASTER: In the East Bay Times, Daniel Borenstein cautions that Jerry Brown's proposal to borrow at low interest rates and put money into CalPERS to reduce the state's pension obligations could backfire.



SAVE THE DATE: On Wednesday, June 21, legislators are bringing their best soccer moves to Papa John's Stadium--the home of the Sac Republic Football Club in the first Capitol Cup. Like the annual legislative softball game, this event hosted by the four legislative leaders will have Democrats facing off against Republicans on the pitch in an event to benefit St. John's Program for Real Change.

The Legislative Cup starts at 5:30 and is followed at 8pm of Republic FC v. Rio Grande Valley FC Toros. A $25 ticket will admit you to both events. An online purchase page will be available soon.

About St. John's Program for Real Change: Dedicated to the eradication of homelessness, this 12-18 month-long program includes mental health therapy, alcohol and drug counseling, parenting education, budgeting classes, healthy relationship training and its proprietary Employment Training Program.

#CONGRATS: Congressman Eric Swalwell and wife Brittany, who welcomed their baby boy Nelson into the world last night.

#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Tim Kamermayer, Jena Price, Catherine Schneider, Sharokina Shams, Aaron Skaggs, and Don Wilcox!

DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS: Of course, Lou Correa replaced Loretta Sanchez. Also, three congressional members with majority non-OC districts do have portions of their districts in OC. These include Alan Lowenthal (Garden Grove, Westminster), Tony Mendoza (Buena Park), and Linda Sanchez (La Palma). 



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  • The McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, in Sacramento offers the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees to both full-time students and those earning a professional degree while working. Our focus on the interconnections of law, policy, management, and leadership provides unique competencies for your success. Students gain a deep understanding of statutory interpretation and regulatory processes critical to modern governance. Learn more at or contact us at

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Lawmakers Try Again To Sway Gov. Jerry Brown On More Jail Visits For Families
Jazmine Ulloa @
State lawmakers on Wednesday voted in favor of crafting a budget proposal that would require all but eight California county jails to p...

ICYMI: "Capitol Journal - Gov. Brown stiffed doctors, dentists and hospitals by not increasing provider fees with new tobacco tax money"
In November 2016 California voters approved Proposition 56, a $2-per-pack cigarette tax initiative. Supporters promised the extra revenues would go toward reimbursement rates for doctors and dentists who treat underprivileged patients on Medi-Cal.

UC Regents Defend Napolitano, Blame Media On State Audit | The Sacramento Bee
Alexei Koseff @
The go-to source for news on California policy and politics

L.A. Lawmakers Sign Off On $9.2-billion Budget
David Zahniser @
Council members struck a deal to address both crumbling roads and a growing number of traffic deaths

Audio: An Early Test For New La School Board Members Cost-saving Ideas: An Expiring Teachers Contract | 89.3 Kpcc
Southern California Public Radio @
United Teachers Los Angeles president Alex Caputo-Pearl, left, speaks during a teachers union event in support of charter school oversight legislation in March as union-endorsed L.A. school board candidate Imelda Padilla, center, and Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer, right, look in. Kyle Stokes/KPCC

Recalling Senator About Eroding Democratic Supermajority In California | The Sacramento Bee
Dan Walters @
Observations on California and its politics

Army Reserve Lawyer Plans Run Against Rep. Scott Peters - The San Diego Union-tribune
Joshua Stewart @

Health Insurers And State Officials Say Trump Is Undermining Obamacare, Pushing Up Rates
Noam N. Levey @
Health insurers and state regulators around the country have concluded they cannot rely on the Trump administration to effectively run Obamacare marketplaces

Election 2017: With Loss, Outgoing Lausd Board President Zimmer Sees A ‘tectonic Shift’
Today's high

Bay Area political events: GMO marches, Trump opposition
Bay Area political events: GMO marches, Trump opposition March to protest Monsanto’s use of genetically modified seeds, 10 a.m. at San Jose City Hall, 200 E. Santa Clara St. For information: Stop the Wars Before They Start, with a Korean scholar and journalist and a member of the Syria Solidarity Movement. Ben Stein, a 95-year-old Holocaust survivor and Berkeley resident, will discuss his documentary, “Near Normal Man,” and free speech versus hate speech. Trump opposition panel: A discussion on the first 100 days of President Trump’s administration and strategies for Trump opponents. Speakers include staffers from House Democratic leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s office and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation. The panel is from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the San Francisco LGBT Community Center, Rainbow Room, 1800 Market St. The event is free but has limited seating. North Korea talk: A conversation with Conn Hallinan, a foreign policy analyst, on North Korea, China and the U.S. Free, 7 to 9 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalists of San Mateo, 300 E. Santa Inez Ave. For information: Policing talk: A conversation on policing reform, led by Ronald Davis, former director of the U.S. Justice Department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. Fake news discussion: A conversation with Joaquin Alvarado, CEO of the Center for Investigative Reporting, on the obligation of the government and media to filter fake news. Peace vigil: A stand against confrontational actions that promote war, hosted by Fremont’s Tri-City Interfaith Council. The Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity will host a discussion on immigration, followed by postcard writing to support social justice. The event is from 10 a.m. to noon at the Northern Police Station Community Room, 1125 Fillmore St. in San Francisco. Elizabeth Warren event: A conversation with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and MSNBC host Joy-Ann Reid at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, 3301 Lyon St. in San Francisco.

Rosenstein Knew Comey Was Going To Be Fired Before Writing His Memo, Senators Say
Lisa Mascaro and Evan Halper @
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Undocumented Immigrants Held At Travis Air Force Base | The Sacramento Bee
Stephen Magagnini @
By Stephen Magagnini

Trump Meets With Lawyers At The White House - Politico
President Donald Trump attends a joint news conference with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos at the White House on May 18. | Getty

Audio: So Lausd Has A Charter-backed School Board Majority. What Now? | 89.3 Kpcc
Southern California Public Radio @
L.A. Unified School Board candidate Nick Melvoin campaigns in Mar Vista two days before the general election. Kyle Stokes/KPCC