Around The Capitol

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  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Bebitch Jeffe): The media's challenge: Reporting the pandemic election. (2020-08-06)
  • The Axe Files (David Axelrod @ CNN/UChicago): Rep. Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) on her background and the veepstakes (2020-08-06)
  • Capitol Weekly Podcast (John Howard and Tim Foster): Dr. Barbara O’Connor, Professor Emeritus at CSU Sacramento (2020-08-02)
  • KQED's Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos): Joe Trippi on the Veepstakes, Pioneering Netroots and the Real Story of Doug Jones' Victory (2020-07-30)
  • Cap•Impact Podcast (Chris Micheli): How Proxy Voting Could Work in the California Assembly (2020-07-30)
  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Bebitch Jeffe): Asian Americans join Latinos as targets of Tump (2020-07-30)
  • California Nation (SacBee): Governor Gavin Newsom and COVID-19 with Elizabeth Ashford, former advisor to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Gov. Jerry Brown, Steven Maviglio, former press secretary to Gov. Gray Davis and Joe Rodota, former cabinet secretary to Gov. Pete Wilson (2020-07-25)

The Nooner for Wednesday, August 12, 2020, presented by SYASL Partners

  • College football
  • COVID-19
    • The numbers
  • Kamala!
  • Plastics!
  • AB 5 
  • Poll position: policing
  • State technology
  • PUC
  • LatinX
  • LA-LA Land
  • cakeday and classifieds


ATCpro SUBSCRIBER UPDATES[A full list of recent election analysis is on the subscribers home page. If you have forgotten or haven't set a password, use the forgot password tool]

  • CA39 (Diamond Bar-Fullerton-Yorba Linda): updated analysis (Leans Dem)
  • CA53 (SD Balboa Park-La Mesa-El Cajon): updated analysis (Safe Dem - Dem-Dem general)
  • SD29 (Diamond Bar-Fullerton): updated anaysis (Toss-up)
  • SD37 (Anaheim Hills-Irvine): updated anaysis (Leans Dem)
  • AD68 (Anaheim Hills-Orange-Tustin-Irvine): updated anaysis (Toss-up)
  • AD55 (Diamond Bar-Yorba Linda): updated analysis (Toss-up)
  • AD77 (North San Diego): updated analysis (Safe Democratic)
  • *SD15 (San José): updated analysis (Safe Democratic)

MONEY MATTERS (highlights from daily campaign finance reports):

I am generally only including main committees. There are some, like agriculture against Prop 15, but I don't include it as it may be a feeder committee that ends up in the main committee, which would lead to duplication.

  • Yes on 15 (split roll): Chan/Zuckerberg Initiative Advocacy Committee - Yes on 15: $4.5 million from Chan/Zuckerberg Initiative
  • No on 15 (split roll): $168,500 from 14 donors
  • No on 21 (rent control): $75,000 from Issues PAC of Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles
  • Yes on 25 (bail referendum - "yes" upholds SB 10): $5 million ($2.5 million each from Connie and Steve Ballmer)

Happy humpday! I hope you had delicious tacos last night. I made these Instant Pot Chicken Tacos to eat during the Capitol Weekly Virtual Top 100. With seven 100+ days in Sacramento beginning tomorrow, I'm looking at almost all Instant Pot and sous vide cooking. I haven't used my a/c in two months, but with those highs and lows above 70, I'm sure that I will have to give in.

Speaking of the Capitol Weekly Top 100, here is the list. As vice president of the board of Open California, which operates Capitol Weekly and many great programs, I want to congratulate and thank the staff -- executive director Tim Foster, editor-in-chief John Howard, and office manager Jyoti Alexander for a job very well done. Additionally, thanks go out to Susan Kennedy, Daniel Zingale, and former governor Gray Davis for unveiling the list!

Yesterday, the Big 10 and Pac-12 conferences postponed the fall football season. After those decisions were made, President Trump said during his presser:

As we safely restore our great economy and reopen our schools -- and hopefully we can watch colleges play football. We want to get football in colleges. These are young, strong people. They won't have a big problem with the China virus. So we want to see college football start, and, hopefully, a lot of great people are going to be out there. They're going to be out there, playing football, and they'll be able to fight it off. And hopefully, it won't bother them one bit. Most of them will never get it, statistically. But we know we'll see more cases at some point, and we will eventually develop sufficient immunity, in addition to everything else that we're doing.

Now, I want to watch college football. As I have written, I have fond holiday memories of watching bowl games with my mom and I'm a big UC Davis Aggies football fan.

However, to suggest that athletes are somehow safe is ignoring reality. The new evidence of cardiomyopathy among otherwise healthy athletes with COVID-19 is very scary once the number of athletes is increased by magnitudes. Beyond the health of individual athletes, the coaches who are clamoring to play are assuring the community that the team members will be safe and protected.

The St. Louis Cardinals have played 5 games because of a COVID outbreak and are postponed again today. In comparison, the Giants have played 19 games. Over the weekend, Cleveland Indians pitchers Mike Clevinger and Zach Plesac left the team's hotel and went to a club against team rules. If you can't get a Major League pitcher with a salary of $4.1 million (Clevinger) to follow the rules, good luck with college students who will be at home between games.

Additionally, while most California colleges and universities will be operating with distance learning, many of the schools in the conferences that plan to proceed with fall football (ACC, Big 12, SEC) are not. If you think that Florida and Georgia are in the clear, you're spending too much time listening to their emu-like governors. (That's not a partisan statement -- Mike DeWine in Ohio has done a great job in difficult circumstances.)

The correlation is far more closely tied to politics than to virus spread, morbidity, and mortality based on data from each state.

We'll see what happens with those conferences. In the end, it needs to be up to the institution leaders who are members of the associated conferences. They need to think about the health and safety of players, staff, and the community. Politicians should stay out of the debate.

Meanwhile, there are huge questions now, such as does the BCS move forward? The Rose Bowl is very unlikely to happen.

Let's get to it after the jump!


- Numbers: The state added 180 deaths yesterday for a total of 10,656. This "Tuesday spike" is not unexpected and reflects on the lower numbers over the weekend -- 99 on Saturday, 66 on Sunday, 99 on Monday. That demonstrates the importance of the 7-day moving average. As we look at it, deaths by day do appear to have leveled off, we want to see them trend downward, but it is also a lagging indicator.

COVID deaths by day
Source: Los Angeles Times

Meanwhile, perhaps the most important indicator is hospitalizations, and the trend looks good:

COVID hospitalizations
Source: Los Angeles Times with CDPH data

-Evictions: The AP's Adam Beam reports that California Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye warned yesterday that if the Legislature doesn't act soon on temporary halting eviction and mortgage foreclosure proceedings in California courts, they will resume September 1.

The Judicial Council of California, the court system’s rule-making authority, voted to halt eviction and foreclosure proceedings on April 6 because of the pandemic. The rules were never meant to be a permanent solution, instead buying time for lawmakers to come up with relief for landlords and tenants.

Five months later, state lawmakers still have not agreed on how to handle the looming eviction crisis once the temporary rules end. The Judicial Council had been preparing to rescind the rules on Friday. But state lawmakers on the council, including Democratic Assemblyman Richard Bloom of Santa Monica, lobbied hard for another extension.

California Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye announced Tuesday the council would vote Thursday on whether to end the eviction protections Sept. 1 — one day after state lawmakers conclude their work for the year.

“There is nothing like a deadline to get people going,” Bloom said.

-The defiant: In the VC Star, Kathleen Wilson reports that Ventura County Superior Court Judge Vincent O'Neill Jr. denied the county's request to direct the County Sheriff's Office to enforce a judge's order for Godspeak Calvary Church to cease offering indoor services. 

O'Neill did grant the county's request for a hearing on contempt of court after Godspeak Calvary Chapel and Pastor Rob McCoy held three indoor services Sunday in defiance of a restraining order issued by Judge Matthew Guasco last week.

Guasco ordered the church and McCoy to stop holding indoor services forbidden by public health orders meant to curb the spread of COVID-19. The church may hold services outdoors, but McCoy says that's impractical and that the ban infringes on religious liberty.

The contempt hearing was set for Aug. 21.

-Hair! In the Bee, Molly Burke reports on the rally by around 250 hairstylists and supporters at the Capitol yesterday calling for the ability to reopen indoors.

Beauty industry members emphasized that working outdoors was unsanitary and impractical, as much of their revenue comes from coloring and other services that cannot be provided outside.

Hairstylists argued that with their sanitation training during beauty school, they can ensure a clean environment indoors. When outdoors, they find it hard to clean.

Many compared the closure to stores and casinos that continue to operate, arguing that a salon is much safer than other businesses due to masks on the entire time and cleaning practices the technicians are trained for.

Of course, casinos are open because they are on sovereign land.

KAMALA! While there was a lot of drama leading up to the pick, Senator Kamala Harris was tapped yesterday by Joe Biden to by his running mate. I'm not going to start linking to all the stories out there because if you are like me, you've already had your fill.

I don't need to highlight for you the historic nature of her being the first Black woman and first Asian-American on the ticket of one of the two major parties. After the announcement and POTUS's presser, rather than listen the repetitive talk on cable news as I worked, I turned on the great "Game Change," the movie released on HBO based on the outstanding book by John Heileman and Mark Halperin. Woody Harrelson playing Steve Schmidt is one of my favorites.

Watching Game Change (free on HBO/$3.99 on many services), I was reminded that the late Gwen Ifill moderated the 2008 debate between veep candidates Joe Biden and Sarah Palin. She would be very happy with yesterday's pick.

Of course, the ticket has to be successful and getting to far ahead is like picking Hillary Clinton's cabinet in 2016.

I last played the parlor game just for fun on December 19, 2018. I have a lot of thoughts on (and changes to) that original list and I'll provide an updated one in the next few days. Folks need to be added and subtracted from the list and clearly it needs to be reordered. A lot has happened in 20 months.

PLASTICS! The campaign for the ballot measure to require that single-use plastics be reusable, recyclable, or compostable by 2030 and to ban polystyrene (Styrofoam) food containers reports turning in more than 870,000 signatures. The campaign needs 623,212 valid signatures to qualify for the November 2022 ballot.

While the campaign intended to get the measure on this November's ballot, it could not because of the stay-at-home order. On that note, we've probably gone through more polystyrene food containers over the last five months than in the last ten years combined.

AB 5:

  • The LAT's Michael Hitzik writes that the judge's opinion Monday in the lawsuit by Attorney General Xavier Becerra against Uber and Lyft shows that the judge is fed up with the legal arguments of the companies.

What’s especially notable about the order is the directness of Schulman’s language about the companies’ legal positions, which include the assertion that they’re not really in the transportation business — they just provide drivers and passengers with an app allowing them to hook up.

Schulman calls this argument “nonsense.” He says it “flies in the face of economic reality and common sense.” He notes “glaring inconsistencies” between the companies’ position and statements they’ve made in other courtrooms and other contexts. He accuses Uber and Lyft of a “prolonged and brazen refusal to comply with California law.”

He states, “It is high time that they face up to their responsibilities to their workers and to the public.”

  • Uber is threatening to shut down in California "for several months" if the trial court's preliminary injunction requiring the company to categorize drivers as employees rather than independent contractors, reports Kron4. The company states that it needs that time to reconfigure its systems for the change in employment status, but coincidentally would also lead up to the November ballot when it and other transportation network companies are seeking voter approval of an exemption to AB 5.
  • A bill is advancing to extend the exemption from AB 5 for newspaper carriers by two years to January 1, 2023. The bill passed Senate Labor, Public Employment and Retirement yesterday uananimously.

POLL POSITION: POLICING: In the Times, Kevin Rector reports on the new Berkeley IGS poll results on perspectives on policing among Californians.

After weeks of protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death, a new poll shows that a majority of Californians support sweeping reforms to law enforcement — including measures that would make it easier to prosecute and sue police officers, limit the negotiating power of police unions and shift police funding to social workers and mental health providers.

The backing for such measures comes amid growing concern about race relations in the state, the poll found, and despite the fact that a majority of respondents expressed some satisfaction with their local police force.

“The data suggest that there’s widespread public concern about police practices,” said Eric Schickler, co-director of UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies, which conducted the poll of likely voters at the end of July. “For many voters, that does not translate into a simple condemnation of police but a more nuanced position that reforms are needed.”

G. Cristina Mora, Schickler’s co-director, said the data show that people still trust their local cops, but it is “not a blind trust.”

STATE TECHNOLOGY: In the Bee, Sophia Bollag and Michael Wilner look at how the state's technology systems are impeding Governor Gavin Newsom's response to COVID-19.

[F]ive months into the biggest crisis of his governorship, technology problems have become major stumbling blocks to his coronavirus strategy.

The state’s unemployment system has been mired in delays, leaving thousands of people desperate for aid checks in limbo.

California’s health insurance program for low-income residents has dropped coverage for thousands of people due to computer errors.

And last week state officials announced they had vastly undercounted coronavirus case data due to a series of human mistakes and IT glitches.

None of the problems have easy fixes.

For CalMatters, Dan Walters writes that Governor Newsom literally wrote the book on how government needs to be revitalized through technology and now as governor has the state's troublesome systems in his lap.

There’s a long list of failed or partially functional new systems that have cost taxpayers billions of dollars, the most notorious being a statewide system for tracking financial data called FI$CAL.

“It just has not been an area of deep focus,” Newsom said Monday, adding that successful updates “require a stubborn, long-term effort” and declaring that despite lapses in previous administrations, “we are now accountable.”

Accountability is great. Improvement would be even greater.

PUC: Andrew Scheeler reports in the Bee that a State Personnel Board review of hiring at the California Public Utilities Commission reports that executive director Alice Stebbins exercised improper influence in hiring decisions, favoring associates from previous jobs. Stebbins is on paid administrative leave.

LATINX: In the Times, Daniel Hernandez reports on a new Pew poll which finds that three out of four Hispanic/Latino respondents haven't heard of the term "LatinX."

Among those who had heard of Latinx, 33% said it should be used to describe the Hispanic or Latino population, while 65% said it should not be used. Researchers also found that people in the United States still prefer to self-identify as “Hispanic” (61%) followed by “Latino” (29%) or their country of origin.

Pew interviewed 3,030 U.S. Hispanic or Latino adults, ages 18 to 65 and older, in December 2019. The survey was conducted bilingually and was “nationally representative,” Pew said.

And these are the things I wrestle with each day and the readers always write -- on all sides.

LA-LA LAND: Former Senate Pro Tem Kevin de León is expected to take over the Los Angeles City Council seat of Jose Huizar in October, reports Emily Alpert Reyes in the Times. Huizar is currently suspended after being indicted on corruption charges associated with developers and campaign cash.

De León won a March race to represent downtown-to-Eagle Rock District 14 but was not slated to be seated until December. Now the “anticipated appointment” of de León is slated for October 15, Martinez wrote in a letter to the city’s chief legislative analyst, Sharon Tso.

cakeday and classifieds after the jump...

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Adam Keigwin, Ryan Morimune, Lucas O'Connor, Art Pedroza, Senator Nancy SkinnerJonathan Yang, Richard Zeiger!


Add your classified now both in The Nooner and online for $50/week or $150/month by emailing, with a headline, a summary of up to 200 words, and what you'd like the end date to be. You can attach a PDF or provide a link for a bigger job description/info to apply. [Other advertising options]

Voices for Progress: Membership Associate

Voices for Progress (V4P) galvanizes the advocacy of business leaders, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and other prominent individuals who unite to protect our climate, strengthen our democracy, and ensure economic and social justice for all. The Membership Associate will support the Membership team with activation of members for participation in public policy advocacy and other programmatic activities; ongoing member maintenance; maintaining data integrity within the membership and activities database; and assisting with the smooth functioning of the team. This position reports directly to the Membership Engagement Manager. The Membership Associate is a Non-Exempt position. Non-exempt employees are paid an hourly rate for hours worked and are eligible for overtime pay.

Full description and application info

Research Analyst, Full-Time (remote)

Probolsky Research is a market and opinion research company based in Newport Beach, California. We are woman and Latina-owned. We are non-partisan, independent researchers passionate about accuracy, data security, and using storytelling to make data usable.

The Research Analyst is responsible for facilitating market and opinion research projects from instrument design to project fulfillment, final research deliverables and presentation to client.


  • Competitive salary commensurate with experience
  • Company-funded medical insurance
  • Paid vacation

Location: We are a virtual company – work from anywhere

California School Boards Association - Public Affairs & Community Engagement Representative (LA North/Ventura)
Serve as CSBA’s liaison to local schools and county boards of education, key decision makers, and the community-at-large. Execute grassroots strategies designed to build relationships with, train, and mobilize local school board members and communities to advance CSBA’s legislative and statewide ballot measure advocacy priorities. Coordinates and executes fundraising events. Remote position based in the following location: LA North/Ventura. Salary based on experience. Please apply at:
Between 1-3 unfurnished offices are available for sublease in the Wells Fargo office building, 400 Capital Mall Sacramento, CA 95814. The offices are approximately 12’X10’ each. Internet, gym. 24/7/365 key card access; professional offices. One year lease preferred. $1,500 per office. Contact Tricia Horan at or 415-919-7990 with questions.
Offices available for sublease: Meridian Plaza

Between 1-3 offices are available for sublease in the Meridian Plaza office building, 1415 L Street, two blocks from the Capitol. The offices are approximately 150 SF each. Internet, gym, partially furnished (desk, chair, bookcases) are included. 24/7/365 key card access; floor-ceiling windows facing Sierras; professional offices. One year lease preferred. $1,500 per office. Contact Jane at or (415) 577-9734 with questions.

Photos: 1 | 2 | 3

Political Data Inc.
For 30 Years PDI has been California’s premier data vendor. Now, you can get live online trainings on the newest PDI software every week: