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THE Nooner for December 8, 2017


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  • CA05 (Napa): added Jason Kishineff (G)
  • CA11 (Contra Costa): added Alva Dennis Lytton (D)
  • AD39 (East San Fernando Valley): added labor representative Antonio Sanchez (D)


Happy Friday! You made it!

As I begin writing this morning, CNN is having a discussion on whether public funds should be used to settle harassment claims in Congress. Obviously, the same conversations are happening right now in Sacramento.

Widely expected, the Senate Democratic Caucus agreed that Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) will take over as Senate President Pro Tempore after the new year, as Kevin de León faces term limits and focuses on his bid for U.S. Senate. I'll leave it to Alex Vassar as I don't have time this morning, but have we had anyone serve in the roles of both Speaker and Pro Tem? 

DESIGNEES: Democracy for America, the advocacy group spun off of Howard Dean's presidential campaign, has endorsed candidates in several competitive California congressional races, reports Sarah D. Wire for the Times:

  • CA25 (Knight): Brian Caforio
  • CA39 (Royce): Sam Jammal
  • CA48 (Rohrabacher): Laura Oatman
  • CA49 (Issa): Mike Levin

Wire also writes that these (and other) members are warily watching the tax bill as the final version is negotiated, while a conservative PAC is targeting Denham, Knight, Valadao, and Walters to keep then as "ayes" on the final bill.

It has to be a tough vote for Steve Knight, whose district is literally on fire. The bill coming out of the House eliminates the tax deduction for losses of property to disasters such as wildfires and earthquakes. In the Senate's version, only federally declared disasters would be eligible for a deduction, which is rare in wildfires.




Probolsky Research


GONZALEZ FLETCHER: Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher posted this to Facebook yesterday. I enjoyed the piece and I'm sharing it here with her permission.

What’s in a name?

When I was married almost a year ago, I made the decision to add Fletcher to my name. It was a deeply personal decision. For 40+ years, my name was Lorena Gonzalez. I never previously changed my name. But... adding Fletcher to Gonzalez was important for a few reasons.

We have 4 kids. I love them all more than I thought possible. I can’t tell you the number of times at camps, school, activities - I’ve been asked if I was the nanny. I understand people’s confusion — our kids are unique — multi-racial, multi-ethnic and adopted.

Having a shared last name of each of our kids no matter the situation is important to me. And to them. I’m the person that gets to pull every family member together... because names mean something.

Plus, when we got married... I was in public life and Nathan was not. What a better way to inform folks in the change in our lives than for me to add his name.

I’ve heard from women (many of whom I really respect) who take offense to me adding to my name. I’m a raging feminist... and I actually harassed both my best friends when they took their husbands names. Are you property? I asked them, as I would be later asked. I was wrong. We all have our own reasons for making these choices. The strongest argument for feminism includes the right of women to make these personal choices, given their own personal view.

That being said. My last name is Gonzalez Fletcher. Yup, it’s long. It’s a mouth full. Sometimes, I forget and say just Gonzalez. Sometimes others do as well..... that’s ok.

But calling me Assemblymember Fletcher or him Mr. Gonzalez seems like you are making a choice to try to be offensive.

I’m not sure your motivation... but you are. Names mean a lot. They’re personal.


From our political collector guru Adam Gottlieb:

If the current state of politics makes you queasy, consider looking to America's nostalgia for comfort.

The Political Collectibles Show & Sale this Sunday is an opportunity to look back at past campaigns and social causes of yesteryear.  New and veteran button collectors, political junkies, armchair historians, and curiosity seekers will be flocking to Sacramento for the political memorabilia and pop culture collectibles show hosted by the American Political Items Collectors (APIC).  The show will be held in Curtis Hall at the Sierra 2 Center (2791 24th Street) in Sacramento. 

Members of the public can buy, sell, and trade campaign buttons, political posters, advertising pinbacks, and other pop culture memorabilia.  Free appraisals of political items will tell you if you have a valuable treasure.

I really should open up my box of buttons I collected over the years. 

#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to



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Toni Atkins Is Next California Senate President Pro Tem | The Sacramento Bee
Alexei Koseff @
The go-to source for news on California policy and politics

Chiang's Delicate Dance On Single-payer Health Care -
Ben Adler @
Capital Public Radio, Inc.7055 Folsom BoulevardSacramento, CA 95826

California Democrats Sound Alarm Over GOP Tax Plan | The Sacramento Bee
Angela Hart @
The go-to source for news on California policy and politics

Toni Atkins poised to become state Senateâ
SACRAMENTO — Sen. Toni Atkins is poised to become the first woman to lead the state Senate, receiving support from the Democratic caucus to replace Sen. President Kevin de León, who said he will step down next year. Atkins, D-San Diego, is expected to be confirmed through a formal vote in the Senate next month. Termed-out de León, D-Los Angeles, is challenging fellow Democrat U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein in next year’s election. While the vote on Atkins is scheduled for early January, the actual transition of the leadership post would happen later in the year, de León said in a statement.

California's Vulnerable GOP Members Watch Closely As Final Tax Bill Is Negotiated
Sarah D. Wire @
Several California Republicans voted in favor of the tax bill with assurances it would become better for their constituents. Will it?

Collins Considers Changing Vote On Tax Bill Over Amendments | Thehill
Josh Delk @
"I would. I'm going to look at what comes out of the conference committee meeting to reconcile the differences between the Senate and House Bill. So I won't make a final decision until I see what that package is," Collins told CBS WABI 5 when asked if she would consider changing her vote.

Senator Collins Responds To GOP Tax Bill Protesters, May Change Vote
Taylor Kinzler @
Collins believes the amendments she added in the Senate version on property tax and medical expense deduction for retirement funding improved the bill and that in time, it will lower the debt.

Republican John Cox Takes Shots At Sacramento 'cronies' And Democratic Rivals In Governor's Race
Phil Willon @
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Newman's Own Faces Mammoth Tax Bill After Lawmakers Fail To Spare The Foundation - Politico

It had been seeking the provision for eight years, and appeared to be finally on the cusp of victory. Both House and Senate Republicans had included the exemption in their tax plan drafts, with little controversy or debate.

Senator Stone welcomes Senate Fellow to his Sacramento office
Senator Jeff Stone is proud to announce the addition of Nicolas Gauthier, a California Senate Fellow, to his staff for the coming year. Nicolas, who is from Grass Valley, served 10 years in the Unites States Army including tours of duty in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He is a...

Senator Vidak Welcomes Senate Fellow Jason Muehlhoff to Capitol Staff
s education in public policy and...

Elite Thoroughbred Race Horses Killed In California Wildfire | The Sacramento Bee
Hundreds of elite thoroughbred race horses sprinted away from flames Thursday as one of California's major wildfires tore through a training center in San Diego County.

Key California Environmental Law Not A Barrier To Development, New State Report Says
Liam Dillon @
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Zinke Booked Government Helicopters To Attend D.C. Events - Politico

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke used taxpayer-funded vehicles from the U.S. Park Police to help accommodate his political events schedule. | Andrew Harnik/AP Photo

California, 13 Other States Sue Epa Over Smog Levels - San Francisco Chronicle
California and 13 other states sued the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday for ignoring an Oct. 1 deadline to update the nation’s map of areas with unhealthy smog levels, saying the delay is endangering children and people who suffer from lung disease.

Statement by Senate GOP Leader Patricia Bates on Senate Leadership Transition
Senate Republican Leader Patricia Bates, of Laguna Niguel, released the following statement after Senate Democrats chose Senator Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) to serve as their next leader, and thus the next Senate President pro Tempore: