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THE Nooner for December 4, 2017


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NAMING NAMES: Lobbyist Pamela Lopez came forward this morning to name her alleged sexual abuser--Assemblymen Matt Dababneh (D-AD45). LA Weekly's Hillel Aron tweets her letter to Assembly Rules Committee chair Ken Cooley

Naming names is a personal choice, but I think the entire Capitol community, well, minus at least one, appreciate Lopez's courage.

Thank you, Pamela. #IStandWithPamela

Hello, folks. I hope you had a great weekend. Yesterday was glorious in SacTown. I overloaded (in a good way) on grub at Sunday farmers' market--ignore the calendar, as there is still a huge array of produce there.

Anyway, can we have a quieter week? Last week was a bit much between the two capitals. 

EAR CANDY FOR THE LEFT: On Saturday night, Pod Save America, one of the top 10 podcasts on iTunes that is hosted by a group of former Obama speechwriters, had a live show at the Crest Theatre on K Street. Joining the "cast" was Attorney General Xavier Becerra, and they announced that they were launching a fund to take on the seven California GOP congressmembers by supporting eventual Democratic nominees in districts won by Hillary Clinton (CA10, CA21, CA25, CA39, CA45, CA48, and CA49). 

The audio of the sold-out show was posted this morning

AD51 (E. Los Angeles): Tomorrow is the special election general in the East Los Angeles district formerly represented by now-congressman Jimmy Gomez, reports Javier Panzar in the Times. "Residents of Echo Park, Silver Lake, Chinatown, Lincoln Heights and City Terrace will have a new Assemblymember after Tuesday’s special election: Wendy Carrillo or Luis López."

Labor is split among the two, with López garnering the support of United Teachers Los Angeles and Carrillo with the support of SEIU, which has spent generously on her behalf. With the independent expenditure and endorsement by Gomez, the Labor Fed, and California Democratic Party, Carrillo has to be seen as the favorite going in to what's likely to be a very low turnout runoff tomorrow.

The UTLA endorsement for López came over the weekend, after 8,659 voters have already sent in their ballots, per Paul Mitchell of Political Data Inc. That's 38% of the votes cast in the special primary, and certainly turnout for the general will be lower as disappointed supporters of other candidates skip the general. Not sure about the teachers' union late play.

While I expect next year to be very favorable for women candidates, I wouldn't read much in to results tomorrow on that front. It's a hyper-local campaign driven by endorsements and special interest money. 

GOV: Perhaps just for gits and shiggles, Willie L. Brown, Jr.  floated in his column yesterday that former California first lady Maria Shriver might be eyeing a run for governor. Shriver's divorce from Arnold Schwarzenegger was finalized earlier this year. Previously registered as a Democrat, she is now Decline to State (NPP), likely because she has returned to media roles.

It was nothing said by Shriver at an event hosted by Charlotte and George Shultz, but rather a suggestion by WLB that he wasn't sure all candidates had jumped in yet. 

US SENATE: In the Chron, Melody Gutierrez and John Wildermuth look at the impact of the Capitol sexual harassment scandal on Kevin de León's challenge to Senator Dianne Feinstein.

CA49 (Carlsbad): In the Register, Martin Wisckol writes that Democrat Doug Applegate is not finding the support of national Democratic organizations' and members of Congress in his rematch against Congressman Darrell Issa, who he came surprisingly close to in 2016.

While the San Clemente resident can boast backing from a variety of labor groups and local and state officials, the five current Democratic Congress members to endorse anybody have, so far, picked other candidates. So has the National Organization of Women.

But despite the money and endorsements of his fellow Democrats, Applegate is dismissive of their qualifications and chances.

“They don’t know the (49th) district,” the 63-year-old said in a phone interview. “They’re all fine people but I think they’re mismatched for beating Darrell Issa in this district.”

That characterization would be disputed by those candidates — environmental attorney Mike Levin of San Juan Capistrano, real estate investor Paul Kerr of Rancho Santa Fe and former State Department contract employee Sara Jacobs of Encinitas.

LAW AND DISORDER: A panel appointed by the State Senate will begin interviewing law firms today to recommend the hiring of a firm to investigate claims of sexual harassment, reports the Bee's Taryn Luna. 

The Press-Enterprise's Jeff Horseman reports that the repeated attempts by Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez (R-Lake Elsinore) to provide legislative staff with whistleblower protection may finally gain traction amidst the harassment scandals.



TAXING MATTERS: For Fox & Hounds, Joel Fox looks at the impact of the tax "reform" vote on the 2018 elections. "Congressional Republicans fighting for re-election in 2018 will have to hope for the promised economic boost to come quickly. Balancing the tax arguments on both the federal plan and the state gas tax could prove tricky."

LABOR FAVOR: For CALmatters, Dan Walters asks how far Democrats are willing to go legislatively to help their labor allies, citing language requiring companies selling zero-emission cars (like Tesla) to consumers receiving rebates to be certified “as being fair and responsible in the treatment of their workers.”

DAY TRIP FOR A GOOD CAUSE: Picturesque Valley of the Moon, scarred by wildfire, begins to find its way back [Meg McConahey @ Press Democrat]


Probolsky Research


#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Jon Fleischman, Justin Hyer, and Bob Mulholland!



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  • Hepatitis A: Expert Briefing hosted and moderated by the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST), Thursday, December 7th, 11:45am-1:15pm, Capitol Room 2040. Please join us for a conversation with experts in infectious disease, vaccination, and local public health efforts to learn how hepatitis A is spread, how at-risk populations are identified for vaccination, what local actions are being taken and can be taken to address or prevent outbreaks, and what policymakers can do to help. Organized in partnership with Senate Health Committee, Assemblymember Gloria, Assemblymember Maienschein, Assemblymember Wood, and the Health Officers Association of California. Please come with any questions you have. For a lunch box, reserve by Noon on December 6th by emailing
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Feinstein Says An Obstruction Of Justice Case Against Trump Is Building | The Sacramento Bee
"What we're beginning to see is the putting together of a case of obstruction of justice," Feinstein, D-Calif., the ranking minority member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said about the committee's investigation.

Where's Your Money Really Going When You Donate To Charity? Do Your Research
George Skelton @
Essential Politics

Company Partially Owned By Two Governments Expected To Build Trump-branded Resort In Indonesia | The Sacramento Bee
Anita Kumar @
By Anita Kumar

Rich Residents Who Got Sf Street Back Will Pay 12 Cents A Year In Taxes - San Francisco Chronicle
Not only did the residents of San Francisco’s exclusive Presidio Terrace win back their gated street — they also get to keep their bargain-basement tax rate of $4.28 a year for the private roadway and sidewalks.

On Washington: For McConnell, Health Care Failure Was a Map to Tax Success
Carl Hulse @

The Senate majority leader explained how Republicans secured the votes they needed, and said the economy would show whether they were right about the bill.

Sacramento State Sees Growing Number Of Homeless Students | The Sacramento Bee
Diana Lambert @
By Diana Lambert

Agriculture Department Lawyers Balk At General Counsel Nominee - Politico

At the Department of Agriculture, Stephen Vaden also has come under scrutiny for his past work defending state voter ID laws that critics say are discriminatory. | John Shinkle/POLITICO

Gun Rights Returning To The Republican House Agenda | The Sacramento Bee
Emma Dumain @
By Emma Dumain

The Health 202: Will CHIP crumble? States are getting really nervous.

chip, chip renewal congress, childrens health insurance program, block grants medicaid, chip states, government shutdown, aca, obamacare, tax reform, individual mandate

Hazardous Lead Levels Found In Mangan Park Outside Shuttered Sacramento Gun Range | The Sacramento Bee
Ryan Lillis @
By Ryan Lillis

Group Says Rep. Duncan Hunter Is Too Close To The Vaping Industry, Seeks Ethics Review - The San Diego Union-tribune
Joshua Stewart, Morgan Cook @
The committee concluded that Polis had not crossed any legal or ethical lines.

If your neighborhood is full of pickup trucks, you might be a Trump voter, says Stanford algorithm
That trite stereotype that Trump voters drive pickups and Hillary supporters sedans might hold some truth, according to an artificial intelligence algorithm developed at Stanford University.

Trump lawyer says president knew Flynn had given FBI the same account he gave to vice president

The president was aware of the issue a couple of weeks before he asked the FBI director to consider letting the issue with Flynn go.

Linda Vista Park Named After Vietnam Medal Of Honor Recipient Who Grew Up Down The Street - The San Diego Union-tribune
Jeanette Steele @
The utility rolls out new, flame-resistant uniforms for its employees in the field.

Colin Kaepernick Honored At Aclu Bill Of Rights Dinner In Beverly Hills
Alene Tchekmedyian @
Colin Kaepernick honored at ACLU Awards in Beverly Hills

End-of-semester Course Evaluations Can Impact Instructor Pay
Celeste Langan, English professor and board member of the Berkeley Faculty Association, or BFA, said professors are given clear instructions on how to conduct the evaluations. She added that, although the procedure is not uniform across all departments, students are ordinarily granted 15 minutes to complete evaluations in class or asked to answer questions online. According to Langan, the instructors do not see the results until the following semester.

Republicans Sought to Undercut an Unfavorable Analysis of the Tax Plan

When the Joint Committee on Taxation found the Republican tax bill would balloon the budget deficit, Republicans tried to discredit it.