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REMINDER: My scott@scottlay.com email address is still in DNS hell. scottlay@gmail.com (where that other email usually goes anyway) is working just fine.



Here are the current tallies of the picks of contest participants. These are all percentages of participants who predict the candidate will win, of course not how much candidates will win by. The page is updated live as participants join and make or update picks.

With 481 participants as of this morning, here are a some of the closest (<60%) projected wins:

IC Steve Poizner (N) 55.09%
IC Ricardo Lara (D) 44.91%


CD39 Gil Cisneros (D) 59.86%
CD39 Young Kim (R) 40.14%


SD14 Andy Vidak (R) 58.13%
SD14 Melissa Hurtado (D) 41.87%


SD22 Susan Rubio (D) 57.42%
SD22 Michael Eng (D) 42.58%


AD38 Dante Acosta (R) 52.83%
AD38 Christy Smith (D) 47.17%


AD72 Josh Lowenthal (D) 58.81%
AD72 Tyler Diep (R) 41.19%

I previously announced the awards:

  • First: $100 Amazon card or charitable contribution of your choice (pot in case of tie)
  • Second: $50 Amazon card or charitable contribution of your choice (pot in case of tie)
  • Third: $25 Amazon card or charitable contribution of your choice (pot in case of tie)

In addition, any Nooner Premium subscriber will have a $25 bonus applied to their prize in thanks for their support.

Here is your unique link. If you forward this message, remove the link since it belongs to you. New Nooner email subscribers (paid or unpaid) will be get their own link between now and the contest close.


You can come back to change your picks any time up to 12pm on Election Day--November 6.

Only the top 25 participants will be shown, and the individual race answers will not be listed. 



We Stand With Seniors

reserve this space





  • CA congressional delegation:
    • Current: 39 Democrats, 14 Republicans
    • My current projection for 116th Congress: 43 Democrats, 8 Republicans, 2 hell, I don't knows
      - Dems hold 39; Reps hold 9
      - Dems pick up 5 leaners/likelies -- Denham (CA10), Knight (CA25) Walters (CA45) and Open/Issa (CA49)
      - Toss-ups of Open/Royce (CA39) and Rohrabacher (CA48)
  • Senate:
    • Current: 26 Democrats, 14 Republicans
    • My current projection for 2019-20 session: 27 Democrats, 13 Republicans
      - Dems pick up Open/Cannella (SD12)
  • Assembly:
    • Current: 55 Democrats, 25 Republicans
    • My current projection for 2019-20 session: 57-59 Democrats
      - Dems hold 55, with guaranteed pick-up AD76 Chávez/Open seat
      likely pick-up in Open/Steinorth (AD40)
      - tough holds for Dems in Salas (AD32) and Cervantes (AD60)
      - tough holds for Reps in Acosta (AD38) and Open/Allen (AD72), and Harper AD74. Reps holding in Baker (AD16).



Upward Mobility at Cal State LA


GENERIC CONGRESSIONAL BALLOT: The current Real Clear Politics generic congressional ballot average of polls from 10/1-10/16/2018 has Democrats+7.6. (change from yesterday: no change) 

For comparison purposes only: In the same period in 2014, Republicans had an edge of +2.4. 


  • US Senate control: 21.9% D, 78.1% R (Change from yesterday: R-0.9)
  • Senate seats: 49 D, 51 R (Change from yesterday: R-1)
  • CA US Senate projected vote: Feinstein: 59.5%, de León 40.5% (Change from yesterday: no change)
  • House control: 84.4%% D, 15.6% R (Change from yesterday: no change)
  • House seats: 234 D, 201 R (Change from yesterday: no change)
  • Popular vote margin: D+8.9% (Change from yesterday: D+0.1)
  • California delegation: 46 Democrats, 6 Republicans, 1 toss-up-CA39 (Royce/Open)



  • mailed: 5,442,671 Dem (44%), 3,125,664 Rep (25%), 3,927,593 Other (31%)
  • returned: 218,801 Dem (42%), 181,850 Rep (35%), 123,424 Other (24%

Full data:  statewide and local government | federal and state legislative districts


EAR TICKLER: On the Gimme Shelter Podcast, CALmatters's Matt Levin and the LAT's Liam Dillon discuss the recovery of the Wine Country following the devastating fires of 2017 with Santa Rosa mayor Chris Coursey

SPORTS PAGE: Ugh. Nothing to say more than that game 7 of the NCLS is at 5:09 in Milwaukee, with Buehler on the mound for the Dodgers. The corny announcers are all giddy to use the Ferris Bue Meanwhile, the news isn't that the SacTown Kings lost by 20 points, but that they allowed 149 points. Cal is at Oregon State (1:00), USC is at Utah (5pm), and UCLA hosts Arizona at 7:30. Of course, the PAC-12 game du jour is Oregon at Washington State at 4:30 on FOX. Go Ducks! Davis is at Cal Poly for the annual Bight for the Golden Horseshoe, while you can catch North Dakota at Sac State in Hornet Stadium at 6.


Happy Saturday dear Noonerite! While there are threats of people from Honduras and Guatemala trying to enter the United States via Mexíco, my dad has the right idea--he's escaping TO Mexíco for his annual fishing trip (if not for the damn election, I would be on that boat). While the former are seeking refuge from drug violence and corruption to find safety and economic opportunity, my dad is escaping the brutality of the seemingly inescapable CA39 (Fullerton) race to find tuna and dorado for a week on a boat with no television.  He was actually on the same trip on 9/11. Imagine the conversation on the boat 

I am so jealous but he did call me last night to assure me that he cast his absentee ballot before leaving. While he asked me for ballot measure thoughts last week, I'm guessing he only took my advice on the bond for children's hospitals.

Last night, Gavin Newsom got face time on HBO during the Real Time with Bill Maher 15th anniversary special. I'm guessing John Cox doesn't usually have HBO on at that hour.

The nonpartisan Politicon, the Unconventional Political Convention, is taking place today and tomorrow at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Today includes Chris Christie, Ann Coulter, Lawrence O'Donnell with cast members of The West Wing (Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitford, Joshua Malina) and more. Tomorrow has James Carville, Kevin de León and more.  

Seventeen days before the election, call it for what it is--Politico is a political fetal position for hacks, geeks, and wonks of all stripes.

POLL POSITION: The drip-drip-drip of the LAT/USC Dornsife poll takes a Saturday breather. We're still waiting on the split roll 2020 number, which will likely get the Sunday treatment.

OCTOBER SURPRISE: Yesterday, surrounded by five California GOP members of Congress, President Trump signed an order directing federal agencies to expedite environmental review and propose environmental regulation changes affecting water storage and delivery projects in the West. The president said: 

We are honored to be joined by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Where is Kevin? Come here, Kevin. He traveled a long way to be here. And Representatives Devin Nunes, Jeff Denham, David Valadao, and Tom McClintock. These are tremendous people. They love this country. They love the state. And I appreciate you all being here. Thank you, fellas. This is very important. 

It's water and threatened species. That means that not everyone is happy. Dale Kasler writes for The Bee: 

Trump’s memo drew quick reaction from California officials, who have fought the Trump administration on multiple fronts and said water supply can co-exist with environmental goals. “We can and must do both, without sacrificing one for the other,” said spokeswoman Lisa Lien-Mager of the Natural Resources Agency. “We hope we can continue working with the federal government to achieve these shared goals.”

The order represents Trump’s latest effort to make good on a campaign promise to bring more water to Valley farmers, who have chafed for years under environmental restrictions that prioritize water for salmon, Delta smelt and other endangered species. In August, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke sent a blunt memo to his aides demanding an action plan to push more water south through the Delta and onto Valley farms.

“What’s happened there is disgraceful,” Trump said of California’s water situation. “They’ve taken it away. There’s so much water, they don’t know what to do with it, they send it out to sea .... They don’t let the water come down into the Valley and into the areas where they need the water.”

It is red meat in October--expect the photo and the President's "Thank you, fellas." comment in television ads this week on both sides in CA10. The GOP ads will talk about water and the Dem ads will be about the closeness of Denham, Nunes, and Valadao to the President. Net approval for POTUS is -14 in CA10.

Among the others, I only have CA22, where POTUS is +12, so Andrew Janz can't hit Nunes.  In Valadao's CA21, the approval is likely right in between with net about neutral. It can help both sides (Valadao and Cox) turn out voters, but likely won't help with persuasion of undecided voters. Here's the image again of the polling we do have and statewide numbers.

I learned more about California water policy in undergrad. I'll just leave it at that and know that many of you likely quickly are into pre-defined camps. Let's just say that it is very complicated and has been going on longer than any of us have been alive, demonstrated in policy since William Mulholland's aqueduct from the Owens Valley to Los Angeles was planned and constructed.

As soon as regulation changes are proposed, expect Attorney General Xavier Becerra to file suit.

SPEAKING OF CONGRESSIONALS AND POTUS: In the Los Angeles Times, Michael Finnegan reports about the differing campaigns about the relationship between Congressmembers Steve Knight and Mimi Walters and President Trump in tough re-election bids. Finnegan writes:

Some Democrats see attacking Trump as essential in an election that will show whether Americans want Congress to put a check on the president. Others avoid Trump and focus on contrasts with specific GOP candidates. Which path they choose depends on a high-risk calculation of whether mentioning the president might backfire with even a sliver of voters in a close contest.

ANSWERING YOUR BALLOT MEASURE QUESTIONS: The good students of UOP's McGeorge School of Law are holding an initiative review session on Wednesday as part of a seminar course on the initiative process. Here is the link with more information: http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/r.html?s=n&l=http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/r.html?s=n&l=https://www.mcgeorge.edu/publications/california-initiative-review/november-2018-initiatives  

Date: Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018
Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Location: Lecture Hall at McGeorge School of Law 3200 Fifth Ave., Sacramento, CA 95817

Great job folks!  


More after the jump...


Classifieds below:

  • Education: Pepperdine Masters of Public Policy (GRE waived for legislative staffers)
  • Education: UOP/McGeorge School of Law: MPP/MPA (full-time or part-time, 3 miles from the Capitol)
  • Job: California School Boards Association: legislative advocate
  • Job: California School Boards Association: regional representatives
  • Job: Climate Resolve: Communications Director (Los Angeles)
  • Job: Climate Resolve: Outreach Program Coordinator (Los Angeles)
  • Lighthouse Public Affairs: Legislative Assistant (Sacramento)
  • Job: Local Health Plans of California seeks a Program Manager
  • Job: OPR Communications Account Executive
  • Job: Southern California Association of Governments: Legislation Analyst (Los Angeles)
  • Training: Lobbying Seminars with veteran Ray LeBov: Next dates: December 13-14, February 7-8
  • Training: PDI (Political Data Inc.): weekly online trainings of various skill levels 



The Political Centrist in the Time of Trump Trailer

THE POLITICAL CENTRIST IN THE TIME OF TRUMP documentary asks, why are our politics so angry, polarized, partisan, biased, petty, perturbed, sexist, uncompromising and fraught with financial paybacks?
View for free on Amazon Prime.


THE 420: The state Bureau of Cannibis Control moved forward on a proposed regulation allowing home delivery of legal marijuana purchases, despite the opposition of the League of California Cities and the California Police Chiefs Association, writes Patrick McGreevy in the Times.

“Our regulations put forth this morning do not change what was proposed on July 13,” bureau spokesman Alex Traverso said. “Statewide delivery is legal and jurisdictions cannot ban it.”

Law enforcement leaders had voiced concern that deliveries may lead to spikes in crime, including robbery of delivery vans carrying cash and marijuana.

“The police chiefs and our coalition continue to remain opposed to the loss of local control,” said Morgan Hill Police Chief David Swing, president of the California Police Chiefs Assn. after the bureau’s announcement Friday. “I continue to believe that statewide delivery of recreational cannabis poses a risk to public safety.”

Swing said if the proposed rule is enacted, cities would still be able to adopt standards regulating how deliveries are made.

So, that explains all those people on Jump bikes with delivery baskets affixed to the front happily riding around downtown Sac and singing. In all seriousness, I took Jump bike last night to dinner and the weather was perfect. That had me singing, even though my basket was empty.


Probolsky Research


#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Senator Kamala HarrisCathy McBride, Max Mikalonis, and Victoria Stewart!



Add your classified of up to 100 words by emailing scottlay@gmail.com for $40/week.

  • Administrative Assistant for Lobby Firm
    Qualifications: Experience working in a governmental affairs office, outstanding communications skills, working knowledge of the legislative process, calendaring and arranging travel, proficient in Microsoft Outlook, Excel and Word. Salary based on experience.

    Send resume to jmccoy@aaronread.com For questions, call Joelle at (916) 448-3444.

  • Lighthouse Public Affairs, Sacramento seeks FT Legislative Assistant to provide scheduling, technical and legislative support in fast-paced, collaborative environment. Salary range $40-50k w/benefits. Open until filled. Send resume and cover letter to sosan@lh-pa.com.

    Link to full job description: lh-pa.com/saclegasst.pdf

  • POSITION YOURSELF FOR LOBBYING SUCCESS IN JUST TWO DAYS. Conducted by 43-year Capitol veteran Ray LeBov, Capitol Seminars' Lobbying 101 & 201 courses offer you cost-effective, comprehensive coverage of California's Legislative, Budget and Regulatory processes, Lobbying the Administration, and Media Strategies, along with an inside perspective on best practices for navigating these processes. You’ll refer repeatedly to our valuable curriculum materials long after the seminars are over. Next dates: December 13-14, February 7-8. More info / registration: www.capitolseminars.net or 916-442-5009.
  • Job Openings – Account Executive
    OPR Communications is seeking account executives for its media relations and public affairs teams. As the leading public relations firm in the Inland Empire, the award-winning OPR team specializes in developing and executing public affairs, media relations, public education and community outreach programs on behalf of a wide range of land-use, transportation, healthcare, energy and government agency clients. Salary DOE. Detailed info here
    Apply at aherrera@oprusa.com.
  • Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) is seeking an experienced Legislation Analyst with excellent writing and communication skills to assist the Legislation Department with advancing SCAG's policy interests and planning priorities through regional, statewide, and national engagement and advocacy. Under general direction of the Manager of Legislation, the Legislation Analyst III will navigate high-level policy discussions and communicate emerging issues to SCAG's staff and Regional Council. This role will assess the impact of proposed legislation and work with the Manager to coordinate a response to all applicable legislative proposals. This role requires a legislative expert who can navigate complex political environments to increase the visibility of SCAG's legislative efforts. This role requires an understanding of transportation, housing, and air quality legislation and policy and an ability to communicate how those issues will affect the SCAG region. To apply please visit scag.ca.gov/opportunities/Pages/CareerOpportunities.aspx.
  • Communications Director - Climate Resolve (Los Angeles)
    Reporting directly to the Senior Operations Director while working closely with the Executive Director, the Communications Director will lead the communications and media activities for the organization. This position will develop a vision and strategy to support policy, project-based, and funding/development initiatives, as well as maintain day-to-day communications for social media. The Communications Director will generate a workplan that elevates Climate Resolve’s brand in the public sphere and grow the organization’s audience. 4+ years experience desired; Knowledge of environmental and CA policy landscape preferred. 401K, medical benefits, dental/vision stipend. $69-78K DOE. Candidates with sense of humor, please apply here: www.linkedin.com/jobs/view/796664542
  • Outreach Program Coordinator - Climate Resolve (Los Angeles)
    Reporting to the Senior Operations Director, the Outreach Program Coordinator will assist the programmatic staff to uphold the mission of the organization via public-facing projects. The Outreach Program Coordinator will perform assignments promoting climate solutions related primarily to energy efficiency and water conservation, including online and in-person outreach, public speaking engagements, and media and communications generation while contributing to additional policy work and projects as needed. Willingness to drive for outreach work throughout both LA County and adjacent counties up to [3] days per week + automobile required (Reimbursement provided). 401K, medical benefits, dental/vision stipend. $48-52 DOE. www.linkedin.com/jobs/view/796648751
  • CA School Boards Assn- Legislative Advocate (West Sacramento) Under supervision of the Assistant Executive Director for Governmental Relations, researches, analyzes, and evaluates proposed and current state and federal legislation, legislative issues, statutes, regulations, and policies; communicates and advocates for the Association’s position to influence opinion in favor of public education; develops, summarizes, and maintains reports and records; fosters cooperative working relationships among Association staff and acts as liaison with various legislative, educational, community, public, and government agencies; and performs related work as required.
    Details here: onepoint.employernet.net/ta/CSBA.jobs?ShowJob=134407117  
  • CA School Boards Assn- Public Affairs and Community Engagement Representative (Bay Area)
    This position serves as CSBA’s liaison to local school and county boards of education, key decision-makers and the community-at-large, and is responsible for implementing CSBA’s grassroots program, establishing relationships, and facilitating local and regional outreach and activation efforts. Communicates about issues in education that require familiarity with educational laws, regulations and trends.  Executes grassroots strategies designed to build relationships with, train, support and mobilize local school board members and communities to advance CSBA’s legislative and statewide ballot measure advocacy priorities. Coordinates and executes fundraising events. BOE. Details:
  • CA School Boards Assn- Public Affairs and Community Engagement Representative (Orange County)
    This position serves as CSBA’s liaison to local school and county boards of education, key decision-makers and the community-at-large, and is responsible for implementing CSBA’s grassroots program, establishing relationships, and facilitating local and regional outreach and activation efforts. Communicates about issues in education that require familiarity with educational laws, regulations and trends. Executes grassroots strategies designed to build relationships with, train, support and mobilize local school board members and communities to advance CSBA’s legislative and statewide ballot measure advocacy priorities. Coordinates and executes fundraising events. BOE. Details:
  • CA School Boards Assn- Public Affairs and Community Engagement Representative (San Joaquin North)
    This position serves as CSBA’s liaison to local school and county boards of education, key decision-makers and the community-at-large, and is responsible for implementing CSBA’s grassroots program, establishing relationships, and facilitating local and regional outreach and activation efforts. Communicates about issues in education that require familiarity with educational laws, regulations and trends.  Executes grassroots strategies designed to build relationships with, train, support and mobilize local school board members and communities to advance CSBA’s legislative and statewide ballot measure advocacy priorities. Coordinates and executes fundraising events. BOE. Details: onepoint.employernet.net/ta/CSBA.jobs?ShowJob=134407122
  • 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 go.mcgeorge.edu/publicpolicy or contact us at publicpolicy@pacific.edu.
  • GRE waived for qualifying government & legislative staffers to apply to the Pepperdine School of Public Policy’s Master of Public Policy program, considered the most unique policy graduate program in the country. Specialization tracks, including State & Local Policy, allow students to personalize their policy studies. Current State & Local Policy courses include, “Advanced Topics in Politics and Budgeting,” “Public Policy for Criminal Justice, Cannabis, and other Drugs,” “Permissions Development and the Environment,” and “Leadership through Public Engagement.” Find out more about this Top 10 in the West/Top 5 in California MPP program located in Malibu: publicpolicy.pepperdine.edu/masters-6