Around The Capitol

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  • Vote-by-mail: 3,659,991
  • Provisional: 1,037,837
  • Conditional Voter Registration Provisional: 55,251
  • Other (i.e. damaged): 81,504
  • Total: 4,834,559

EAR TICKLER: On KQED's Political Breakdown Podcast, Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos are joined by SF Chronicle columnist Joe Garofoli to chat about elections.

It's Friday! You made it! The week seemed like it would never end.

We mourn the losses in the fires. Acting Governor Gavin Newsom issued an executive order yesterday afternoon for the Camp Fire and added LA and Ventura this morning. As I write, the LA Zoo is evacuating the animals.

It is literally Paradise lost. CALFIRE estimates the Camp Fire at 2,000 structures destroyed and 15,000 threatened Camp Fire is now the fourth most destructive in California history. The fire started at 6:33am yesterday. That is stunning.

Five deaths have been confirmed by Butte County Sheriff's Office, but conditions are too unstable to do a door-to-door search.

Ventura County had a horrible day, starting with the shootings and ending the day with two wildfires above Simi Valley and Santa Rosa Valley. The 101 freeway is closed this morning.

We now have 7 of the most destructive wildfires in CA history over the last 13 months. Only 2003 had more than one--two. 

Something very serious is going on here.

Yesterday, Pepperdine lost students in the shooting. Today, the campus is closed and residents are told to shelter-in-place in two campus facilities because of the Woolsey fire. Awful week for the Waves.

Rhys Williams, Newsom's chief of staff correctly pointed out that yesterday's Acting Governor actions were not the first by Newsom, but rather the first since he became Governor-Elect.

November is for elections, not wildfires. We shouldn't have to write about this or mass shootings for that matter.

BAIL: Proponents of the referendum to overturn SB 10 (Hertzberg), the bill eliminating money bail in favor of pretrial risk assessment turned in 600,000 signatures. They need 365,880 valid signatures to qualify for the 2020 ballot. Financial companies were the big donors to the signature gathering effort. They underwrite the surety bonds issued by bail bond companies. 

I'm sure county elections officials are just delighted to have signature validation while they are counting ballots. That said, the timeline is in the law. Counties have 30 working days to validate signatures. The last referendum to make the ballot was the ban on plastic bags. Voters approved the referendum, repealing the law. Of course, local governments have largely passed local bans.  

UPDATES: CA45 (Irvine): Mimi Walters's (R) lead shrank to 2 points over Katie Porter, and Harley Rouda's (D) margin over Dana Rohrabacher (R) increased in CA48...Assemblyman Matthew Harper (R) appears to have lost to Cottie Petrie Norris (D) in AD74 (Irvine), while Tyler Diep (R) appears to have beaten Josh Lowenthal (D) in AD72 (Seal Beach). 

No real updates for CA10. Garth Stapley and Kevin Valine report for the ModBee that around 100,000 outstanding ballots are from CA10. For perspective, 112,115 ballots have been counted.

Orange County expects to average 40,000 ballots per day, meaning it could be 11 days or more. Los Angeles County has an estimated 984,000 ballots to count, and the first update is expected this afternoon. 

Alameda and Contra Costa have a combined 331,860 unprocessed ballots. AD16 is separated by 3,000 votes. Thus, that seat might still be in play for Democrats, depending on the ballot distribution.

In other words, don't expect any big swings in the county updates tonight. County elections offices aren't the highest county budget priority. 

The Bee's Bryan Anderson writes that the 4.488 million uncounted ballots could become a big problem for the state GOP.

CA15 (Livermore-Pleasanton-Hayward): Three-term congressman Eric Swalwell (D-Livermore) has decided that he will make a presidential bid in 2020. That opens up a Democratic district that will likey draw a big field for the top-two primary.

Locals include Assemblymember Catharine Baker (R-Dublin), Assemblymember Bill Quirk (D-Hayward), and Senator Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont). Wieckowski represents the western half, as does Quirk. Baker represents the eastern side. Baker is quite popular as a political moderate, although there was a significant campaign for her opponent this week. She currently leads Rebecca Bauer-Kahan by around 3,000 votes (2.4%). Hillary Clinton won the seat in 2016 by 35.3 points, and Kamala Harris won by 43.4%.

Other possible candidates are Dublin City Councilmember Melissa Hernandez, who is on Swalwell's community advisory board, or Hayward councilmember Sara Lamnin. While a solidly Dem region, local governments have lots of Republican and NPP electeds in the nonpartisan offices.

Of course, as we saw this year, the bench isn't just electeds. CA25, CA48, and CA49 will likely have new congressmembers who have never held elected office. CA10 will likely join the club. Look for wealthy business leaders to be recruited by the DCCC or candidates who can ramp up huge national small-dollar fundraising, as Katie Hill did. 

The district is quite diverse, according to 2010 census numbers, and is likely more diverse today. 

  • 37.5% White
  • 6.9% Black
  • 30.1% Asian
  • 23.4% Hispanic
  • 2.1% other

That said, those are citizen voting-age population numbers, not registered voters. Registered Asian voters are 17.4% and Latino are 16.5%.

This is not Bill Baker's district any more.

The seat is safe Democrat, even though Baker is an attractive candidate to put forth. However, she can likely continue winning AD16 to serve eight more years, and the Assembly Republican Caucus will want her to stay put with every seat being precious. Also, state legislative offices are a lot easier to overcome partisan disadvantage than congressional districts. We're talking 2020 with President Trump up for elections. The national issues are a lot more partisan than state-level issues. State is about schools and roads; national is health care, taxes (who could imagine Democrats won on the issue this week), and social issues.

CA38 (Whittier): Well, it didn't take long for Linda Sanchez's personal family issues to come out. She dropped her bid to be chair of the House Democratic Caucus and now it's out that her husband has been indicted. The AP reports "U.S. Rep. Linda Sanchez, now the caucus vice chair, is married to James Sullivan, one of five people indicted on theft and conspiracy charges this week in connection with a public electricity cooperative and $800,000 worth of trips to the Kentucky Derby and other locations."

GOV: In the Times, Melanie Mason looks at the job ahead for Gavin Newsom to fill jobs in his administration. As Ben Christopher writes for CALmatters, Newsom is going to have his hands with this week's fires and shootings. Meanwhile, Alexei Koseff reports in The Bee that Newsom plans to go further on gun control than Jerry Brown has been willing. “There are a number of things he vetoed that I would not have vetoed, and there are a number of things that I want that haven’t been done,” Newsom said in an interview with The Sacramento Bee. He declined to discuss specific policies."

SISTER ACT: With the election of Susan Rubio in SD22 (San Gabriel Valley), we have the first sister act in the Legislature. Susan joins her older sister Blanca Rubio (AD48). h/t Alex Vassar

THE OC: The LAT's Gustavo Arellano writes the obit for the Orange County GOP establishment as only Gustavo can. 

SACTOWN: The Bee's Marcos Bretón writes that now that Sacramento voters have approved the one-cent sales tax in Measure U, Mayor Darrell Steinberg needs to prove that it's worth it.


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: Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation: full-time program manager (Los Angeles)
  • Job: California Medical Association: Director of Communications & Public Affairs (Sacramento)
  • 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)
  • Job: The Council of State Governments: Policy Committees and Programs Coordinator (Sacramento)
  • Job: Local Health Plans of California seeks a Program Manager
  • Job: OPR Communications Account Executive
  • Job: Reed and Davidson: Associate Attorney (Los Angeles)
  • Job: Southern California Association of Governments: Legislation Analyst (Los Angeles)
  • Job: The University of California Office of the President: Associate Director of Strategy, Planning & Operations in its (Sacramento). 
  • Job: University of California Office of the President: Administrative Services Manager (Sacramento)
  • 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 





Probolsky Research


#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Patrick Harbison and Stephanie McGann-Jantzen!



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

  • The University of California Office of the President is looking for an Associate Director of Strategy, Planning & Operations in its Sacramento Office. The position serves as a key member of the office’s management team, facilitates issue management across legislative, budgetary and advocacy portfolios, produces briefings, memos, reports and presentations on a variety of matters affecting the University, and directs special projects. Job requires strong knowledge of UC, the executive and legislative branches of California government and higher education policy. Bachelor’s or advanced degree in public policy-related fields and 7 years of related experience is preferred. Salary commensurate with experience.
    To apply, visit:
  • Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation seeks a full-time program manager in Los Angeles. The program manager will reach out to, educate, and involve key constituencies, including state and local elected officials, leaders of community groups, and their respective constituencies. A full job description can be found at Email cover letter and resume to
  • Small, downtown Los Angeles boutique law firm is looking for an associate attorney with a demonstrated interest and/or experience in political, election, and nonprofit organization law, as well as a broader interest and/or experience in business law and civil litigation. [full job description]
    Email resumes to Ana Simeonova, Office Manager, 
  • The University of California Office of the President is looking for an Administrative Services Manager for its Sacramento Office. The position manages the office’s human resource administration, budget development and tracking, account, fiscal and inventory controls, space planning and technical support services, among other administrative duties. Bachelor's degree in related area or equivalent experience is required, plus five years of experience performing a range of administrative functions. Salary commensurate with experience. To apply, visit and search for requisition 20180461. 
  • Director of Communications & Public Affairs – California Medical Association (Sacramento)
    Reporting directly to the VP of Strategic Communications, this position will develop/execute earned media and public affairs strategies in support of physician-focused health care advocacy. Seeking an assertive and tactful self-starter with the ability to effectively generate and shape media coverage. Must be driven with the ability to adapt to evolving priorities and deadlines. On-the-record experience required; health care or political experience strongly desired. Great culture and amazing benefits with 401k match. $85-100k DOE. View the full description and apply at:

  • The Council of State Governments is seeking a Policy Committees and Programs Coordinator in Sacramento, CA.
    Position contributes to the organization's policy objectives and engagement with regional policy-makers and other stakeholders. This includes coordinating and providing policy committee and program support.

    • Provides administrative, logistical and communications support to policy committees and programs staff.
    • Conducts entry-level policy research, follow-up activities, and provides information to members.
    • Maintains communication, conducts outreach and establishes rapport with committee staff, legislators, representatives of the private sector, and with federal, state and local government officials.

    View full posting at CSG is an Equal Opportunity Employer (Minorities/Females/Veterans/Disabled)

  • 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 For questions, call Joelle at (916) 448-3444.

  • 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: 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. 
    Apply at
  • 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
  • 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:
  • 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.
  • 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:  
  • 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:
  • 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
  • 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:
Gavin Newsom Has To Staff Up His Administration Fast. Here Are The Key Jobs To Watch
Melanie Mason @
There won’t be much time to waste. Newsom, a Democrat who is finishing his second term as lieutenant governor, will be sworn in the first Monday in January, leaving him just two months to fill key posts.

Democratic candidates in Florida pull into recount range as the state once again becomes the epicenter of a post-election fight over ballots

Republicans maintain a narrowing lead in the U.S. Senate and governor’s races as votes continue to be counted.

GOP Reps. Rohrabacher And Walters Lose Ground In California House Races In Latest Ballot Count
Michael Finnegan, Maya Sweedler @
Update on the vote count in House races in Orange County that remain too close to call.

Trump Heads to France, Embracing a Post-Election Presidential Tradition

President Trump will join world leaders marking the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, and escaping the capital after some election losses and the firing of his attorney general.

Fda Expected To Impose Severe Restrictions On E-cigarettes
Laurie McGinley @
As soon as next week, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb is expected to announce a ban on the sale of flavored e-cigarettes — the majority of vaping products sold — in tens of thousands of convenience stores and gas stations across the country, according to senior agency officials. According to its officials, the agency will also impose such rules as age-verification requirements for online sales.

In Arizona Senate race, Democrat takes narrow lead over Republican as vote count continues

Officials are tallying mail-in ballots in the race between Kyrsten Sinema and Martha McSally.