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Happy 2019!

Me: "Alexa, write The Nooner." 

Alexa: "Nooner is spelled N-O-O-N-E-R"

Damn, that didn't work.

Here are a few of the key dates in January:

  • January 3 - Congress sworn in; Nancy Pelosi expected to be elected Speaker of the House.
  • January 7 - California constitutional officers, Legislature sworn in.
  • January 10 - The Governor's Proposed Budget for 2019-20 is expected to be released. 

Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?

Or, as sung in the second stanza at the Buddhist Church of Sacramento to the reverand strumming a uke, "Hotaru no kikiri, mado no yuki?" (I don't vouch for the accuracy of the ukelele backed version as neither I nor likely a majority of attendees speak Japanese. 

Nevertheless, John Myers reports the answer to the question this morning from outgoing governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr.--"Hell no!"

Myers, who traveled up to the governor's new 2,600 square foot one-bedroom ranch house on the family Colusa County ranch over the holiday, reports in the Times that, while the governor is coy about his future efforts, there are some clues...

"One safe bet for Brown’s near future is a full-throated defense of his criminal justice legacy. The governor has his sights set on squashing a 2020 ballot initiative that would undo some of his efforts to overhaul state prisons by providing new parole opportunities for some convicted of lower-level felonies. Last month, he filed a lawsuit challenging the initiative’s place on the ballot, insisting that the measure — which aims to rewrite his parole overhaul, Proposition 57 — was improperly drafted.

Brown took issue not only with the process used by the crime victims group that drafted the measure, but also what he believes is its intent.

And, on the non-legacy legacy:

"No one may ever again see politics from as many vantage points — local government, three different statewide elected offices, three campaigns for the presidency. Brown, who said there are no plans for a vacation in the coming months, seems at ease with whatever California’s historians might someday write about him.

"I’ve been able to leave on fairly good terms,” he said. “I think I was skillful and we got a lot done."

Myers includes his interview with Brown in the California Politics Podcast.

HIGH BAR: While there are ardent detractors of any Democrat, many of whom are readers and who I respect, I think that most would say that Jerry Brown exceeded hopes for entering office. Gray got clobbered by a wobbly budget and the dot-com bust, with a little help from Enron. Arnold rode in on star power and found that balancing his goal of being an agent of change did not fit his desire of being adored by as many people as possible. 

I personally like both of them. For both in their own ways, timing really sucked.

Jerry came along for his second stint with a goal of fixing the state's budget problem and really didn't care about his overall image. He restrained spending and obtained increased high-income personal income, sales, and vehicle taxes--all eventually approved (or not repealed) by the voters. He upset people on both ends of the political spectrum, but has held that elusive 60%, which is what counts.

As Jerry acknowledges to John Myers, much of his success was luck. The surging state revenues and cooperation of the voters allowed him to not only balance the budget but set aside a boatload of cash. More importantly, it allowed him to champion his causes of criminal justice reform and climate change.

Now, Gavin comes in with a challenge of maintaining that 55-60%, albeit without the same "last act" attribute that Jerry had. Already, activists are going back to his early support of single-payer health care and expecting a bill this year.

That's not going to happen without federal cooperation. First, we would need waivers for repurposing existing federal subsidies to California's coverage programs and provisions of the Affordable Care Act. More importantly, we would need major tax changes to allow the private sector to yield the same benefit of providing employee coverage if done through either increased state or individual taxes.

I believe in single-payer, but I also recognize that I could sprint to the first water station in a marathon, but there's no way I'm finishing one.

I know, before you start emailing me, there are studies about how it can be done. I'm just saying that there is a reason SB 562 stopped where it did "at Rendon's desk," and it was out of these practical issues. Gavin can't spend his political capital on something like this without assertions from a lot of other parties, from key private sector players to the feds that they will play ball. The chess board isn't even set yet.

Legislative leaders owe a lot to Gavin, who spent a lot of time of the last month on the campaign at rallies to drum up local supporters for down-ticket races, and it yielded 7 more congressional, 5 more Assembly, and 3 more State Senate seats for the Democrats. He has both offensive and defensive coordinators up in the booth, as they'll be saying today. 

In no way am I saying that either Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins or Speaker Anthony Rendon are lap dogs to Newsom. They just know that collectively they are a team. From this "high bar" that Gavin is being handed by Jerry Brown and with 60 Assembly Democrats (75%) and 29 State Senate Democrats (72.5%), they are like Alabama going in to next Monday's game--they can control the field as long as there are no fumbles or interceptions.

Scott Shafer looks at the governor-elect's ambitious proposals and whether or not he can deliver on them.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, Gavin is no empty suit. He'll face budget challenges, but he has a heckuva lot of breathing room. During that time, he can check items off his to-do list.

DREAM THE VOTE: In the Los Angeles Times, Jazmine Ulloa looks at the efforts of the DREAM Acters made during the election, even though they couldn't vote themselves.

"In California, Dreamers [...] phoned voters, walked precincts and protested outside Republican lawmakers’ offices, reaching people who had not been called or visited by either party. Their efforts helped boost turnout among Latinos in this year’s midterm election — 29 million nationwide were eligible to vote, according to the Pew Research Center — which is projected to surpass levels higher than in past presidential election years, political analysts said.

An analysis of data from eight states by the Latino Policy and Politics Initiative at UCLA found the Latino vote grew by an estimated 96% from 2014 to 2018, compared with 37% among non-Latinos. The surge, researchers said, helped move 20 House districts held by Republicans to Democratic control in California, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, New Mexico, Florida, New Jersey and New York.

In another study, the political research firm Latino Decisions found that an increase in Latino voter turnout contributed to flipping six GOP-held congressional seats in California — four in the once conservative bastion of Orange County and two in the Central Valley that have long eluded Democrats."

More and #CAKEDAY 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: Aaron Reed and Associates: Administrative Assistant
  • Job: Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation: full-time program manager (Los Angeles)
  • Job: California Hospital Association: legislative advocate
  • Job: Equality California: legislative manager
  • Job: NorCal Cannabis: Legislative and Regulatory Strategist to Public Policy Strategist
  • Job: Pruitt Consulting LLC: fundraising associate
  • Job: SEIU-UHW: Regional Political Organizer (Fresno)
  • Job: SEIU-UHW: Regional Political Organizer (Phoenix, AZ)
  • Job: The University of California Office of the President: Associate Director of Strategy, Planning & Operations (Sacramento). 
  • Office Space: Class A Office Space Available on L Street, across from Capitol
  • Training: Lobbying Seminars with veteran Ray LeBov: Next dates: February 7-8, April 4-5
  • Training: PDI (Political Data Inc.): weekly online trainings of various skill levels 


ON THE JOB: As the calendar changes, so do the state's minimum wage and many workplace laws. In the Times, Margot Roosevelt reports that, not surprisingly, not everyone is happy about the changes

SANCTUARY: For the Times, Brittny Mejia reports that the killing of Newman police officer Ronil Singh by an allegedly undocumented immigrant has brought new attention to the state's "sanctuary" laws, particularly in the state's red counties. 

PG&E: Nothing better than to drop a federal court filing on New Year's Eve, but that's what PG&E did yesterday in response to a request from a federal judge. The Chron's Roland Li reports "Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said in a federal filing on Monday that numerous employees spotted and reported flames shortly after the Camp Fire started on Nov. 8. The company also provided new details on equipment inspections and damage in response to a federal judge’s request for information."

The filing was in response to a request by U.S. District Judge William Alsup, who is overseeing the five-year probation of the utility that followed the San Bruno natural gas explosion. 

Probolsky Research


#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to RL Miller and Fabrizio Sasso!


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

  • Aaron Reed and Associates: Administrative Assistant
    Experience working in governmental affairs office, working knowledge of the legislative process, calendaring, arranging travel, proficient in Microsoft Outlook, Excel and Word, outstanding communication skills. Salary BOE. Please send your resume to Joelle (1/15)a

  • Voices for Progress (V4P) -- Advocacy Assistant (Santa Monica, CA)
    V4P is looking for a passionate individual with an interest in progressive advocacy and public policy to join the V4P team in Santa Monica. V4P is a community of hundreds of business owners, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and other prominent leaders who are dedicated to advocating to protect our climate; ensure equality and expand opportunity; and strengthen representative democracy. This full time position will work to engage V4P members in advocacy with CA state and federal elected officials and assist in enlisting new members and raising needed funds. More details/can apply here.

  • Disability Rights California
    We are seeking a Senior or Experienced Legislative Advocate for an aggressive disability rights organization. Join a lobbying team to advocate on issues that impact Californians with disabilities. Experience in special education and housing accessibility issues a plus. Salary based on experience. Apply here. Deadline is 12/31/2018.

  • SEIU-UHW – Regional Political Organizer (Fresno, CA)
    The Political/Community Regional Organizer is responsible for a broad range of program objectives to build and strengthen our infrastructure and engage our members to be a powerful force at their worksites, in the legislative process, in the community and at the ballot box. Proven track record is a must. Competitive salary and excellent benefits. For more information on the position and to apply please visit our candidate portal at
  • SEIU-UHW – Regional Political Organizer (Phoenix, AZ)
    This position is a 6-month assignment to start and is responsible for a broad range of program objectives to build and strengthen our infrastructure, engage our members and workers to be a powerful force at their worksites while participating in the legislative process, in the community and at the ballot box. Proven track record and experience with Arizona politics/legislation is a must. Competitive salary and excellent benefits. For more information on the position and to apply please visit our candidate portal at
  • Class A Office Space Available on L Street, across from Capitol.  One well-furnished executive office & assistant station.  Great views of Capitol.  Use of in-suite 10-person conference room, kitchen, closet, & color printer/copier.  $1,250/mo.  Contact Michael Daft @ 916.448.3075 or
  • Pruitt Consulting LLC, seeks a part-time Fundraising Associate in Sacramento.
    Pruitt Consulting is a consulting firm that specializes in fundraising for Democratic members of the California State Legislature, Constitutional officers, nonprofits, and political action committees.The Political Fundraising Associate assists the Political Fundraising Director and Chief Executive Officers in identifying donors, planning and attending fundraising events, and other business operations. This position requires analyzing political contributions, improving fundraising database, and assisting in various office duties.
    Email your resume to Gabriel Castellanos Jr, or call at 916-400-4044.
  • Equality California, California's statewide LGBTQ civil rights organization, is seeking a full-time Legislative Manager. The Legislative Manager will have the opportunity to spearhead Equality California’s legislative advocacy both substantively and administratively, as well as participate in electoral work for pro-LGBTQ candidates and community engagement throughout California. For more information and to apply, visit
  • Looking to make a real difference?  The California Hospital Association is seeking a full-time Legislative Advocate.  This position will be responsible for representing and advocating the interests, policies and issues of CHA on state legislation, including high priority and complex state legislation. For more information and to apply, visit
  • Learn how you can earn the top ranked Wharton MBA right here on the West Coast, without putting your career on hold. Join Admissions Director Barbara Craft for an Information Reception on Thursday, December 6and learn what it takes to earn the Wharton MBA while continuing to live and work in Sacramento. Barbara will be joined by local students and alumni who will share their perspectives on why Wharton is worth the commute. This event will provide an overview of the admissions process and discuss what makes the Wharton program unique, followed by time to network and ask additional questions while enjoying light refreshments. Register for the event here.

    NorCal Cannabis has been developing and shaping the legal cannabis industry since 2016. We are looking for spirited and motivated individual who will ensure NorCal Cannabis Company is engaged and strategic in its current regulations and future legislative changes affecting the company at the state and local level.


    • Legislative and regulatory tracking and strategy for California cannabis opportunities on a local and state level.
    • Support government relations and public affairs at the local and state level.
    • Follow and examine the legislation and regulations and provide detailed reports about how the legislation will influence the organization's activities.

      Please go to our website for the complete posting at or email with your resume and cover letter. 
  • WHY DOES CAPITOL SEMINARS DRAW PARTICIPANTS FROM ALL OVER CALIFORNIA? Because we offer comprehensive, cost-effective advocacy training you can put to immediate use. Our moderator, 43-year Capitol veteran Ray LeBov, and guest faculty are current practitioners in governmental advocacy or state government, and provide unique inside insights you won't find anywhere else. We're the No.1 advocacy training resource for nonprofits and private sector organizations, lobbying firms, government entities and trade associations. Professionals in government relations, public affairs, public policy, public administration and allied fields know that our training helps advocates, support staff, and execs who hire and manage lobbyists work together more effectively. Book now for February 7-8 or April 4-5 dates (December 13-14 are sold out). Learn more / register at or 916-442-5009.
  • 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
  • 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)

  • 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:
Federal Employee Union Sues Trump Administration Over Government Shutdown - Politico

AFGE represents roughly 700,000 federal employees and has challenged the Trump administration over a number of issues, including major restructuring at the Education Department.

On Politics: Elizabeth Warren Is Running for President

The Massachusetts senator is forming a presidential exploratory committee, making her the first major candidate in what is likely to be a crowded Democratic primary.

Trump’s Pick For Ag Once Questioned Value Of Border Wall - Politico

Barr was attorney general under President George H.W. Bush when he was asked in a Feb. 24, 1992, interview whether he supported a proposal from Republican presidential challenger Pat Buchanan to erect a barrier of ditches and fences along the border to stop illegal immigration.

2020 Democratic Presidential Candidates Are Lining Up. Who Matches the Moment?

Democrats are in a moment of transition, grappling with what they stand for and what their voters expect. Hardly any of their likely candidates for 2020 qualifies as an instant front-runner.

Trump's 2019 Message: 'calm Down And Enjoy The Ride' - Politico

President Donald Trump's new year's message arrived on the 11th day of a partial government shutdown that has no end in sight. | Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

House Democrats To Push For More Diversity In Top Corporate Ranks - Politico

Rep. Maxine Waters has proposed creating a subcommittee focused on diversity and inclusion. | Zach Gibson/Getty Images

POLITICO Playbook: Welcome to 2019. â

And Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) announced her 2020 presidential campaign on Monday -- the first major Democratic contender to do so.

Trump Lashes Out At Retired General Who Called Him Immoral - Politico

President Donald Trump lashed out Tuesday at a retired army general who had been critical of him and his decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

Chief Justice Praises Progress On Sexual Harassment Policies For Judiciary - Politico

Chief Justice John Roberts last year called for a working group to study workplace misconduct in the government's judicial branch. | Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


A policy digest for one the first major candidates in the 2020 Democratic presidential primaries.

With a Fresh Swipe at Trump, Cuomo Pardons 22 Immigrants

Most of the clemency requests granted by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo related to immigration and what he called President Trump’s “obsession with keeping immigrants out.”

Trump: Ask Warren's Psychiatrist If She Thinks She Can Win In 2020 - Politico

Warren sought to settle the question of her ancestry last fall by releasing the results of a DNA test that suggested that she has Native American heritage that dates back somewhere between six and 10 generations. But the DNA test results were met with significant criticism, including that her Native American ancestry is too diluted and too far in the past for her to claim it.

Kim Ready To Talk More With Trump But Says Not To Test North Korea - Politico

Washington and Pyongyang are trying to arrange a second summit between Trump and Kim, who met in Singapore on June 12.

U.S. Military Apologizes For New Year’s Eve Bomb Tweet - Politico

It included video of B-2 Stealth Bomber dropping large payloads. The original tweet was deleted, but some Twitter observers captured it for posterity.

Trump tells America to chill out and â

The president’s new year began in isolation at the White House, awaiting a showdown with Democrats.

As China Talks Begin, Trumpâ

Robert Lighthizer, the United States trade representative and a China skeptic, wants to prevent an anxious president from making a quick, empty deal in a rush to calm the markets.

Trump invites congressional leaders to White House to discuss wall fight

The meeting would be the first time the president has sat down with Democrats since the shutdown started.


In an interview, the president predicts prosperity in 2019 and does not mention signs of an economic slowdown

Trump to Allow Months for Troop Withdrawal in Syria, Officials Say

The president had ordered that the 2,000 American troops in the country leave within 30 days, but said on Monday that they would be “slowly” drawn down.

Warren Plans Four-city Iowa Visit This Weekend - Politico

Sen. Elizabeth Warren plans to make stops in Council Bluffs, Sioux City, Storm Lake and Des Moines, Iowa. | Scott Eisen/Getty Images

Videos Show Staff Dragging, Shoving Immigrant Kids - Politico

The videos first obtained by The Arizona Republic are blurry but show staffers dragging children on the ground and shoving a boy against a door. In one video, a staffer is seen sitting at a conference room table, fidgeting with her hair, while another staffer drags a child into the room. The treatment continued even after the child falls to the ground.

'Wow': NASA startles with invitation to sanctioned Russian

Dmitry Rogozin is no typical rocket-science technocrat. He is an ultranationalist politician with a record of stark racism and homophobia who is under American sanctions.

Top Pentagon spokeswoman resigns amid internal investigation

It was unclear whether Dana W. White’s departure Monday night was related to the probe of whether she mistreated employees. Her move came within hours of Mattis’s resignation.

How Trump Got Bad at Twitter

Once he ruled the medium, but read his feed now and you can see something has gone very wrong.

Chief Justice Roberts notes progress in protecting judicial employees from misconduct

His year-end report does not address criticism that investigations end if a judge retires or joins the Supreme Court.