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The Nooner for Tuesday, February 11, 2020, presented by SYASL Partners

  • Poll position
  • Texas v. California
  • Party power
  • SD07 (Tri-Valley): important correction
  • AD57 (Whittier) - lots today
  • Coulter + Boxer = ?!?
  • La-La Land
  • Cakeday and classifieds


  • Ballots mailed: 15,778,792
  • Ballots returned: 32,325

POLL POSITION: Paul Mitchell shares more data (n=843 weighted) from the February CA120/Capitol Weekly poll and John Howard writes it up:

 CA120/Capitol Weekly
KQED/Change Research
CA120/Capitol Weekly
Bernie Sanders 29% 30% 26% 27% 24%
Elizabeth Warren 16% 16% 20% 23% 21%
Joe Biden 11% 15% 15% 24% 20%
Pete Buttigieg 14% 8% 7% 6% 11%
Michael Bloomberg 13% 4% 6% 1% (VOL.) 6%
Amy Klobuchar 5% 3%   4% 5%
Andrew Yang 4% 5%   3% (VOL.) 7%
Tulsi Gabbard 3% 4%     2%
Tom Steyer 3% 2%     2%
Others (total)     6% 5%  
Undecided   13% 12% 7%  

Howard writes:

Months ago we noticed when Buttigieg was the first candidate to get a second bump in the polls.  Now, with his victory in the Iowa, he comes in for his third uptick in our polling, something no other candidate has enjoyed.


The New Hampshire primary is on Tuesday, and the results there may give both Sanders and Buttigieg an opportunity to frame this race as the leaders of each of their ideological lanes – Sanders taking the mantle on the left as a Democratic Socialist, and Buttigieg tacking to the middle with a moderating rhetoric that cuts into the Biden base.

New Hampshire is also an opportunity for Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar to catch a wave, building off several strong debate performances. And as the senator from the neighboring state of Massachusetts, Warren could benefit from a surprise showing in New Hampshire.

The biggest change in our tracking poll comes at the expense of Biden, who is not poised to perform well in New Hampshire. He may not have a shot at a win until South Carolina’s primary on Feb. 29, with its significant African American population.

For many Super Tuesday states, those with elections on March 3, a win in South Carolina could prove pivotal.

Coming the Saturday before Super Tuesday, a big victory in that state could have an outsized impact on several states. However, with California’s early vote, and the expectation that 40-to-45% of California’s votes will already have come in, the impact will be muted.

My take is that Bernie's number is pretty solid and he's likely to walk away with at least half of California's delegates. The next four (Biden, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Warren) are highly volatile and will likely move around and it's unclear who will share the state's delegates with Bernie. Remember that there are 54 elections for delegates on March 3--90 at-large delegates statewide and 4-7 delegates in each of the 53 congressional districts.

I've written it a few times before, but it bears repeating. Only candidates receiving 15%+ will receive delegates in both the at-large statewide and congressional district level. So, let's take CA06 here in Sacramento, which has been allocated 5 delegates (based on voter registration and performance in 2012 and 2016 presidentials).

Let's split the vote among five hypothetical candidates:

  • Divac: 20%
  • Webber: 16%
  • Pollard: 15%
  • Bibby: 14%
  • Artest: 9%

The vote is final (somewhere around April 2). So, we drop Bibby and Artest and divide the delegates among those reaching viability.

  • Divac: 20% of the vote / 51% of the vote for candidates reaching viability = 39.21%
  • Webber: 16%/51% = 31.37%
  • Pollard: 15%/51% = 29.41%

Delegate allocation:

  • Divac = 39.21% x 5 = 1.96
  • Webber = 31.37% x 5 = 1.56
  • Pollard = 29.41% x 5 = 1.47

This would result in Divac and Webber having 2 delegates, while Pollard would get 1. Again, that's just one congressional district and we're going to be glued to county updates in every congressional district. A candidate need not achieve viability at the state level to win delegates at the congressional level. It is possible, albeit not likely, that Bernie could be the only candidate who reaches viability statewide while several others win delegates at the district level.

Given the trajectory/momentum, right now I expect Sanders and Bloomberg to achieve viability statewide in California. Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Warren are big questions. I don't expect all three to be over 15% by March 3. Bernie's supporters are mostly cemented. The others have fewer devotees and draw support from the "whoever can beat Trump" crowd. The Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Warren camps fear that Bloomberg is going to be the attention by his massive spending as the Bernie alternative who can beat Trump.

It's anybody's game in California and while election day is now exactly three weeks away, we likely won't know who "won" California for six weeks or so.

Yesterday was the Sacramento Press Club luncheon with state directors from four campaigns making their case (Buttigieg's campaign was invited but canceled).

The Bee's Bryan Anderson tweets:

Office and staff counts:
Bloomberg: 17 offices, 300 staff
Sanders: 20, 90
Warren: 3, 48+
Biden: 1, 20+

Three hundred staff! Is that the most staffed campaign in California history?

TEXAS V. CALIFORNIA: The State of Texas has filed a complaint with the Supreme Court of the United States alleging that California's "travel ban" violates several provisions of the United States Constitution affecting Texas citizens. The ban that currently restricts state-funded travel to eleven states was created in AB 1887 (Low) in 2016 and applies to: travel to a state that, after June 26, 2015, has enacted a law that (1) has the effect of voiding or repealing existing state or local protections against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression; (2) authorizes or requires discrimination against same-sex couples or their families or on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression; or (3) creates an exemption to antidiscrimination laws in order to permit discrimination against same-sex couples or their families or on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

The Supreme Court of the United States has original jurisdiction to arbitrate disputes between states, which is why Texas can file directly rather than the normal appellate procedure you're familiar with.

Texas contends "California’s sanctions against Texas and Texans are born of religious animus and violate the Constitution’s Privileges and Immunities Clause, U.S. Const. art. IV, § 2, cl. 1; Interstate Commerce Clause, id. art. I, § 8, cl. 3; and guarantee of Equal Protection, id. amend. XIV, § 1."

I guess now is as good as anytime to get a ConLaw refresh:

Art. IV, §2, cl. 1: Privileges and Immunities: "The citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the several states."

Art. I, §8, cl. 3: Interstate Commerce Clause: Congress shall have power "To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes"

Art. XIV, §1: Equal Protection: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

Let's just say that Texas has a good case before this Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, this year Low wants to ban taxpayer-funded travel to Trump properties. The Bee's Wes Venteicher reports that only one such incident has occurred, with a CalPERS employee staying at Trump National Doral Miami. Low cites the Constitution's Emoluments Clause (Article I, §9, cl. 8) as the basis for the proposed California law. The Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit held last week that members of Congress do not have standing to challenge the President's regular usage of his properties for business and pleasure.

It might surprise my Trump-supporting readers who think I'm a knee-jerk liberal (I'm not), but I believe the DC circuit is correct in its holding on standing. The Constitution doesn't have a private attorney general provision for enforcing it, so citizens really can only seek recourse if a state actor (government) is abridging their rights. The only recourse against the President from private citizens (which Members of Congress are) is impeachment and removal and we know how well that works.

PARTY POWER: Both parties yesterday reported spending in the targeted races. Watching this spending gives you an idea (as if it wasn't clear) where the games are being played. While most will be general election fights, propping up candidates in March is key strategically. (*=incumbent)

  • California Democratic Party
    • SD21: Kipp Mueller: $5,907
    • SD28: Joy Silver: $7,268
    • SD29: Josh Newman: $50,734
    • AD55: Andrew Rodriguez: $1,960
    • AD60: *Sabrina Cervantes: $924
    • AD65: *Sharon Quirk-Silva: $1,386
    • AD71: Elizabeth Lavertu: $1,386
    • AD72: Diedre Nguyen: $28,912
    • AD74: *Cottie Petrie-Norris: $924
    • AD76: *Tasha Boerner Horvath: $2,079

SD07 (Tri-Valley): The other day I reported that the independent expenditure Keep California Golden that is supporting the reelection of Steve Glazer (D) received money from the State Building Trades. That was wrong and I offer my apologies. It was the Building Industry Association. The trades, along with most of labor, is supporting challenger from the left Marisol Rubio (D) in the race.

If you spend hours daily reading independent expenditure reports, you can understand how I could screw that up. Again, my apologies.

Meanwhile, EdVoice reports putting $80,000 into its IE committee supporting Glazer's reelection.

AD57 (Whittier): A Fair Political Practices Commission investigation has been opened against Sylvia Rubio (D) alleging that she has failed to disclose income of $12,250 in year 2019 on her Form 700. This followed a complaint filed by Whittier resident Peter Ohanesian identifying payments from sister Susan Rubio's State Senate committee for consulting. Sylvia at the time was working for the city of Carson.

The FPPC will next update the case upon the completion of the investigation.

AD57 (Whittier): The California Credit Union League has jumped into the fray in the hot race to succeed Assembly Majority Leader Ian Calderon in the district southeast of Los Angeles. The League reports an independent expenditure of $44,785 for a mailer supporting Sylvia Rubio (D) in the battle with Ian's stepmother, Lisa Calderon.

COULTER + BOXER = ?!?: The Building Industry Association of Southern California has it's invite out for its April 14 gala at the Richard Nixon Library and Birthplace. The guests are polar opposites--former United States Senator Barbara Boxer and the vile Ann Coulter. Why they picked Coulter I have no idea. There are plenty of outstanding conservative pundits that don't turn to racism and anti-Semitism to sell their wares. One has to wonder if Boxer, who is Jewish, knew that she'd be sharing her speaking time with Coulter.

More after the jump...

LA-LA LAND: For the Times, Matt Stiles reports on the changes in voting in California's largest county.

As next month’s presidential primary election approaches, officials are putting the finishing touches on a $300-million overhaul of a system that hasn’t had major upgrades in decades. Scrutiny and expectations will be high in the wake of the botched vote counting in the Iowa caucuses.

While the changes run the gamut, from expanded voting schedules to modernized balloting devices, the most significant change will be apparent as soon as many residents go to vote.

That’s because the number of polling places has been dramatically reduced from the last presidential primary, from more than 4,500 to about 960.

But while many voters will discover that their traditional polling place has closed, they will also have more voting options.

Under the new system, voters who live in L.A. County are no longer limited to one polling place. They are able to cast their ballot at any voting center from Long Beach to Lancaster, regardless of where they live in the county. The new center addresses were recently made public.

LA-LA LAND: This amazing LAT article reminds me of the Los Angeles riots. It was 1992. I was working with Paul Mitchell and Dustin Corcoran to elect Bill Clinton and we had an event with Clinton and Gore and maintain Gore's signed books in validation. Meanwhile, 40 miles to our north, the city was aflame. My sister lived near USC in the middle of it all. Two years later, she was living in Northridge above the earthquake epicenter. To this day, she is coined as the disaster-drawer, as she was studying in Europe after the Chernobyl nuclear accident that many of us relived this year with the HBO series and now lives in Simi Valley. Simi draws wildfires, but the basin of the valley rarely is affected.

Cakeday and classifieds after the jump...

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Lucy Dunn!



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