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The Nooner for Thursday, October 15, 2020, presented by SYASL Partners

  • The vote
  • Ballot boxes
  • Money matters
  • COVID-19
  • Fires
  • PG&E power shutoffs
  • Police use of force
  • Gators and crocs
  • Cakeday and classifieds

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¡Buenos dias mis amigos y feliz jueves! As I expected, the episode of Netflix's new docuseries Song Exploder with Lin-Manuel Miranda and colleagues discussing how "Wait For It," the Aaron Burr song from Hamilton, came together was fantastic. I even slept 7 hours last night after averaging about three the last week!

The HBO Max The West Wing reunion episode was released this morning, but will have to wait for tonight! Meanwhile, I jumped forward and can see that Donna and Josh haven't changed at all.

The West Wing Special

Today, October 15, marks three significant dates. First, it is the third quarter FEC campaign reporting deadline. While lots of campaigns have pre-announced numbers, the deluge of actual reports will hit the FEC's server tonight. This will be a very popular page.

It is notable that the Biden campaign has announced astonishing figures -- $383 million in September with $432 million cash on hand, or enough to spend $22.7 million through Election Day. That's very good news for Democratic Senate challengers who will likely benefit from some of those riches, even in states where Biden is not competing himself (Georgia, Montana, and South Carolina) but have competitive Senate races (two in GA with a special and a regular). President Trump's campaign has not released fundraising figures and is instead talking about earned media from the rallies.

Tonight is the deadline established by the Census Bureau to halt collection of data for the 2020 Census following the Supreme Court stayed the preliminary injunction granted by Northern District of California judge Lucy Koh, allowing the Trump Administration to immediately halt the collection of data, notwithstanding a announcement by the Census Bureau of deadline extensions because of collection challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Capitol Weekly's John Howard reports on the last-minute scramble by California officials to get last-minute responses. It's not easy, as the known deficits are among the homeless population and persons dislocated by wildfires and living in hotels or other temporary housing. John writes:

The census is the critical yardstick for the distribution of federal funds and the constitutionally required redrawing of political districts. When the data ultimately is approved, it will serve as the basis for new legislative and congressional districts in the 2022 elections. Those include 120 legislative districts, potentially 53 congressional seats and four districts of the Board of Equalization.

A January 2020 report by the Brookings Institution’s William H. Frey said California may lose one of its 53 House seats, one of 10 states that face the loss of a seat.

California, the nation’s most populace state with nearly 40 million people, has long feared an undercount and believes a stymied count could cost the state billions of dollars over the decade. Early on, the state committed big money to ensure as accurate a count a possible, believing that whatever the state spent — about $187.4 million — it would pale in comparison with the potential loss of federal dollars.

Another significant matter of this date is that since there has been no federal action on additional state economic assistance by today, spending reductions in the state budget occur, particularly in state employee pay, higher education, and the judicial branch are triggered (technically, not automatically restored). Below is the chart of the effects of no federal action from the Legislative Analyst's Office summary of the Budget Act:

October 15 triggers

We're just getting started...

THE VOTE: Here is the latest from Political Data's ballot tracker. Topline is 21,508,716 ballots were mailed, with a breakdown of Dem: 43.4%, Rep: 24.2%, and NPP/other: 29.4%. Thus far, 1,788,028 have been returned (8%).

Partisan breakdown of returned ballots is:

  • Democratic: 1,029,672 (10% of mailed)
  • Republican: 364,753 (7% of mailed)
  • NPP/other: 393,603 (6% of mailed)

The PDI site has breakdowns by congressional and state legislative districts (click "Select for Filters") and a list of the top 25 districts searched.

I am not ready to make proclamations about record turnout. Earlier, yes. But everyone was sent a ballot and I'm guessing pretty much all of the 1,788,028 ballots returned are regular voters. That likely includes "always polling place" voters who have time-shifted and used their postage-paid (for the first time in most counties) mail-in ballot to avoid the in-person experience because of COVID-19. People are also "working" at home, which allows for an earlier completion of the ballot. I probably wouldn't have voted yet in a normal year despite being an always-voter.

BALLOT BOXES: The California Republican Party has responded to the cease-and-desist letters from Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Secretary of State Alex Padilla by arguing that its private ballot collection boxes are legal and similar to practices used by Democrats under the liberalized third-party ballot collection laws that have emerged from the Legislature over the last few years. In it, they cite a "neighborhood drop-off" program used by first-term Rep. Harley Rouda (D-CA48). You can read more about the Rouda's program that the CAGOP cites in this tweet thread by Ben Christopher of CalMatters.

The question now is if AG Becerra heads to Sacramento Superior Court today...


Independent expenditures

  • SD05 (San Joaquin): $50,230 for mail in SUPPORT of Susan Eggman (D) by Firefighters, Realtors, and Neighbors for a Stronger California
  • SD11 (San Francisco): $34,651 for mail in SUPPORT of Scott Wiener (D-D race) by the California Association of Realtors (Cumulative total: $187,628)
  • SD15 (San José): $19,118 for mail in SUPPORT of Ann Ravel (D-D race) by Silicon Valley JobsPAC, Sponsored by The California Chamber Of Commerce (Cumulative total: $1,104,354)
  • SD15 (San José): $149,207 for mail to OPPOSE Dave Cortese (D-D race) by Silicon Valley JobsPAC, Sponsored by The California Chamber Of Commerce (Cumulative total: $790,816)
  • SD15 (San José) $244,792 for mail, digital ads to OPPOSE Ann Ravel (D-D race) by Opportunity PAC (labor) (Cumulative total: $966,935)
  • SD21 (Santa Clarita-Antelope Valley): $45,168 for mail to SUPPORT Scott Wilk (R) by Building a Healthy Future for CA Facilitated by Agricultural Council of CA
  • SD21 (Santa Clarita-Antelope Valley): $44,361 for mail to OPPOSE Kipp Mueller (D) by California Alliance for Progress and Education, an alliance of business organizations (Cumulative total: $208,874)
  • SD23 (Rancho Cucamonga-Redlands-Hemet): $37,420 for mail in SUPPORT of Rosalicie Ochoa Bogh (R) by Coalition to Restore California's Middle Class, Including Energy Companies who Produce Gas, Oil, Jobs and Pay Taxes (Cumulative total: $271,450)
  • SD23 (Rancho Cucamonga-Redlands-Hemet): $37,420 for mail to OPPOSE Abigail Medina (D) by Coalition to Restore California's Middle Class, Including Energy Companies who Produce Gas, Oil, Jobs and Pay Taxes (Cumulative total: $591,023)
  • SD29 (Diamond Bar-Fullerton): $59,286 for mail to OPPOSE Josh Newman (D) by Coalition to Restore California's Middle Class, Including Energy Companies who Produce Gas, Oil, Jobs and Pay Taxes (Cumulative total: $1,727,886)
  • SD29 (Diamond Bar-Fullerton): $59,286 for mail in SUPPORT of Ling Ling Chang (R) by Coalition to Restore California's Middle Class, Including Energy Companies who Produce Gas, Oil, Jobs and Pay Taxes (Cumulative total: $596,304)
  • SD29 (Diamond Bar-Fullerton): $24,248 for mail to OPPOSE to Ling Ling Chang (R) by Opportunity PAC (labor) (Cumulative total: $475,477)
  • SD37 (Anaheim Hills-Irvine-OC beach cities): $72,684 for polling, calls, messages, and data in SUPPORT of John M.W. Moorlach by JobsPAC, a bipartisan coalition of California employers
  • SD37 (Anaheim Hills-Irvine-OC beach cities): $7,210 for mail to OPPOSE John M.W. Moorlach by Opportunity PAC (labor) (Cumulative total: $507,969)
  • AD13 (Stockton): $405,224 for TV, digital ads in SUPPORT of Carlos Villapudua (D-D race) by Coalition to Restore California's Middle Class, Including Energy Companies who Produce Gas, Oil, Jobs and Pay Taxes (Cumulative total: $1,421,477)
  • AD13 (Stockton): $34,989 for mail in SUPPORT of Carlos Villapudua (D-D race) by Affordable Housing Coalition
  • AD13 (Stockton): $405,224 for TV, digital ads to OPPOSE Kathy Miller (D-D race) by Coalition to Restore California's Middle Class, Including Energy Companies who Produce Gas, Oil, Jobs and Pay Taxes (Cumulative total: $594,560)
  • AD36 (Antelope Valley): $30,760 for mail to OPPOSE Steve Fox (D) by California Alliance for Progress and Education, an alliance of business organizations (Cumulative total: $104,916)
  • AD36 (Antelope Valley): $34,100 for polling, radio to OPPOSE Steve Fox (D) by the California Dental Association (Cumulative total: $48,418)
  • AD42 (Cathedral City, Twenty-Nine Palms, Yucaipa): $8,000 for phonebanking in SUPPORT of Chad Mayes (NPP) by Californians for High Quality and Affordable Health Care Political Action Committee, sponsored by California health plans
  • AD42 (Cathedral City, Twenty-Nine Palms, Yucaipa): $68,773 for mail in SUPPORT of Chad Mayes (NPP) by Keep California Golden (Cumulative total: $280,714)
  • AD42 (Cathedral City, Twenty-Nine Palms, Yucaipa): $7,641 for mail to OPPOSE Andrew Kotyuk (R) by Keep California Golden (Cumulative total: $17,443)
  • AD59 (South Los Angeles): $303,595 for digital, radio ads in SUPPORT of Reggie Jones-Sawyer (D-D race) by Nurses and Educators for Reggie Jones-Sawyer for Assembly 2020, sponsored by labor and consumer attorneys organizations
  • AD59 (South Los Angeles): $53,262 for mail to OPPOSE Reggie Jones-Sawyer (D-D race) by the California Correctional Peace Officers Association (Cumulative total: $253,985)
  • AD68 (Irvine): $10,426 for polling, mail in SUPPORT of Steven Choi (R) by California Association of Realtors (Cumulative total: $134,379)
  • AD68 (Irvine): $10,426 for polling, mail to OPPOSE Melissa Fox (D) by California Association of Realtors (Cumulative total: $23,133)
  • AD72 (Garden Grove-Westminster): $50,184 for calls, text messages, data to SUPPORT Janet Nguyen (R) by JobsPAC, a bipartisan coalition of California employers
  • AD72 (Garden Grove-Westminster): $32,490 for mail to OPPOSE Diedre Thu-Ha Nguyen (D) by Silicon Valley JobsPAC, Sponsored by The California Chamber Of Commerce
  • AD76 (N. San Diego Coast): $25,000 for mail to SUPPORT Tasha Boerner Horvath (D) by California Medical Association and California Academy of Family Physicians
  • AD77 (N. San Diego): $25,000 for mail to SUPPORT Brian Maienschein (D) by California Medical Association and California Academy of Family Physicians

Large ballot measure contributions - cash only excluding in-kind contributions

Doing the Laundry 
If you're new to this game, this is how special interests can far exceed the $4,700 contribution limit for the November general. I explained the process on 9/15. After passing max $38,800 contributions through party committees, those committees can pass the money along far in excess of the $4,700. It's "washed" as long as the original donor doesn't "direct" the money. Of course, we all know the competitive races. I list them for ATCpro subscribers.


  • Morongo Band of Mission Indians: $37,500 sent to Fresno County Democratic Central Committee
  • Morongo Band of Mission Indians: $37,500 sent to San Diego County Democratic Party
  • Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters: $38,800 sent to San Mateo Democratic Central Committee
  • California State Council of Service Employees Small Contributor Committee: $38,800 sent to Los Angeles County Democratic Party


These don't include state party money. It's just "fun" to watch the flow if you like reading hundreds of campaign finance reports each day. The Republican Party doesn't have much of this activity which would be a good panel discussion to explore why. I have my thoughts. Of course, California's GOP has far less money to go around these days, although there's lots of business-side money found in independent expenditures.

All in the game, yo'.

COVID-19: California added 101 deaths yesterday for a total of 16,758.

-Wrong Way: In the Times, Colleen Shelby reports that transmission of the virus is increasing in Los Angeles County and elsewhere as government allows reopening.

The uptick comes as Los Angeles and other counties have been reopening the economy over the last few weeks. Officials have been hoping to avoid a repeat of the COVID-19 surge that occurred over the summer, which forced officials to impose new restrictions on businesses and public spaces.

As more businesses have reopened in L.A. County over the last two weeks, Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said Wednesday that the increase in infections has been connected largely to worksite outbreaks, defined as a cluster of three or more cases.

There have been 39 reported worksite outbreaks in the county from Sept. 20 through Oct. 4 — a 70% jump from the 23 outbreaks reported in previous weeks.

Meanwhile, if you're excited about a large Thanksgiving or holiday gathering, look at Europe. The news is not good as temperatures cool and society tries to return back to normal. The NYT's David Landler writes:

From France to Russia, from Britain to the Czech Republic, European leaders are confronting a surge in coronavirus cases that is rapidly filling hospital beds, driving up death tolls and raising the grim prospect of further lockdowns in countries already traumatized by the pandemic.

The continent, which once compared favorably to the United States in its handling of the pandemic, is being engulfed by a second wave of infection. With an average of more than 100,000 new infections per day over the past week, Europe now accounts for about one-third of new cases reported worldwide.

In the most vivid sign of the deteriorating situation, President Emmanuel Macron of France on Wednesday imposed a curfew of 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. in the Paris region and eight other metropolitan areas, beginning on Saturday. “The virus is everywhere in France,” he told the French public, as he declared a state of emergency.

Closer to home, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, rarely on the same page, both said yesterday that it appeared New York was heading to a second spike in the coming weeks. After the horrific first spike, the greater NYC region dropped significantly to a low plateau for the last several months.

The hot, dry weather California is experiencing probably is helping with cases right now, although we have that whole wildfire tradeoff thing...

-Kamala: The California junior Senator and veep candidate has been sidelined after after her communications director and a flight team member who were on the campaign plane tested positive. Kamala is doing a precautionary isolation until at least Sunday and campaigning virtually. All were reportedly wearing N-95 masks and since she was never in close contact with the positive individuals, she doesn't need to quarantine for 14 days according to the campaign.

Equally about the visual contrast from the other campaign...

-Disneyland: Disney CEO Bob Chapek believes that California's reopening guidelines for theme parks are "arbitrary" and "without regard for actual fact," reports Brady MacDonald for the Register.

“It seems to me that the guidelines that are set up by the state of California are more stringent than any state across the country,” Chapek told CNBC. “If you look at the history of Disney and what we’ve been able to do during the reopening — rather than arbitrary standards set up without regard to actual fact — and what we’ve been able to do as a company, I think you’d come to a different decision about reopening Disneyland.”

Disneyland, Disney California Adventure and other California theme parks closed in mid-March amid the COVID-19 pandemic and remain shuttered while they await reopening guidelines from the state.

Initial draft guidelines from the state reportedly call for reopening individual California theme parks at 25% capacity once their county reaches the least-restrictive “minimal” risk level and limiting attendance to residents who live within 120 miles of each park.

“It’s not much of a negotiation,” Chapek told CNBC. “It’s pretty much a mandate that we stay closed.”

MacDonald also reports on the visits by state officials to Disneyland and Universal Studios this week to see the reopening plans of the parks.


  • August Fire (Mendocino, Humboldt, Trinity, Tehama, Glenn, Lake, Colusa counties) 1,029,605 acres, 77% contained as of 9:11am
    • 54 structures destroyed
  • Creek Fire (Fresno, Madera counties) 341,722 acres, 55% contained as of 9:11am
    • 856 structures destroyed
  • SQF Complex (Tulare County) 167,766 acres, 70% contained as of 8:21am
    • 228 structures destroyed
  • Glass Fire (Napa, Sonoma counties) 67,484 acres, 95% contained as of 10/12 9:16am
    • 1,555 structures destroyed

Meanwhile, the weather conditions that arrived in Northern California yesterday are expected to move in to Southern California with Santa Ana winds today through tomorrow, raising the fire risk.

PG&E SHUTOFF OUTLOOK: Yesterday I listed the forecasted power shutoff affecting 24 areas served by PG&E for electricity. Only two (Humboldt and Trinity) were projected for tonight, with the rest forecasted for last night. Here is the current map and it appears that the forecasted shutoffs have taken place -- from Shasta to Santa Cruz and Monterey. The inverted purple triangles are the public safety power shutoffs.

While I don't have time to click every one of them, if you do so, you'll see the status (click the plus sign in the window that comes up). It states that the weather has improved in the Monterey and Santa Cruz county areas and that power is expected to be restored today. Further north, from the Bay Area to the far north, there is no such message. After given an all clear by PG&E meteorologists, the switch isn't flipped back on. The lines in the affected areas must be inspected for damage first.

more after the jump...

POLICE USE OF FORCE: In the LA Times, Kevin Rector reports on incidents of the use of controversial force during the celebration by fans of the Los Angeles Lakers championship win on Sunday night.

When the hard-foam police projectile struck 22-year-old William Gonzalez in the right eye as he celebrated the Lakers’ NBA title in downtown Los Angeles on Sunday night, it shattered his eye socket, ripped apart his tear duct and “exploded” the eyeball itself, doctors said.

The Kobe Bryant jersey that his brother Michael used to stanch the bleeding was immediately soaked as Michael dragged Gonzalez through the streets, trying to find a way out of the chaos.

“My brother … grabbed me and said ‘Run!’ because they were still shooting,” Gonzalez said Tuesday, one day after extensive reconstructive surgery.

Others also were badly injured in the area around Staples Center, where the LAPD declared an unlawful gathering as storefronts were being damaged and officers targeted with thrown bottles and other items. One man lost eight teeth when a projectile struck him in the mouth.

The injuries Sunday add to a growing list of people hurt by LAPD hard-foam and other “less lethal” projectiles, as the LAPD calls them. Police say the weapons are an effective way to disperse crowds that have become violent.

But some of the claims made by police about the weapons — that the rounds don’t “penetrate the skin” and that officers don’t aim at the head or other sensitive body parts — are coming under growing scrutiny after a series of incidents over the last few months, some caught on video. The cases have brought calls from activists that the Los Angeles Police Department stop using such weapons for crowd control and have placed pressure on the department to explain the injuries.

Legislation to ban the use of some methods of "less-lethal force" that included the foam-tipped rounds was carried by Assembly member Lorena Gonzalez in AB 66, but it died at the end of session without a vote on the Senate Floor. It was strongly opposed by law enforcement.

CROCS AND GATORS: Eastern District of California judge Kimberly Mueller granted a preliminary injunction on Monday continuing to block the implementation of the ban on importation of crocodile and alligator products. Mueller issued a temporary restraining order in December 2019 blocking the end of a sunset of January 1, 2020 leading to the return of a ban. For Courthouse News, Maria Dinzeo reports:

Shopkeepers throughout the state joined forces with alligator farmers in a 2019 lawsuit, claiming the law will decimate the alligator skin trade and drive them out of business. U.S. District Judge Kimberly Mueller issued a temporary restraining order in December, preventing the ban from taking effect on its scheduled date of Jan. 1, 2020.

Mueller’s latest ruling issued Tuesday went a step further, finding the ban preempted by the federal Endangered Species Act.

“The question is not which policy better protects animals, but whether state or federal law controls. Although California has its own interest in protecting animals, the reach of that interest ends where the preemptive effect of federal law begins,” Mueller wrote.

Mueller’s ruling is not the first of its kind. In 1979, a federal judge in California blocked then-Gov. Jerry Brown from enforcing a prohibition on the American alligator trade in Fouke Co. v. Brown because of federal ESA preemption.

The California Legislature lifted the ban in 2006, but added a sunset provision that would reinstate it in 2010, once again making the importation and sale of alligator and crocodile parts illegal. Several amendments deferred the sunset provision until Jan. 1, 2020.

I wrote about the issue in on August 5, 2019. On a totally unrelated note, now-Judge Mueller taught my "Internet and the Law" class at King Hall and was a fantastic professor and brilliant legal mind. I continued to know her through the legal community until her appointment by Obama to the federal bench.

Google looked like this at the time and was called a "prototype" and was at Zuckerberg wasn't even a student at Harvard yet and TheFacebook would emerge three years later and was limited to the Ivies.

cakeday and classifieds after the jump...

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Denyne Colburn and Maha Rizvi!


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]

The McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific

In addition to a well-respected JD, the McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, offers the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees. Both full-time students and those earning a professional degree while working succeed in the program. Our focus on the interconnections of law, policy, management, and leadership provides unique competencies for your success. Students gain a foundation in statutory interpretation and skills in public policy making and implementation. Learn at a beautiful campus three miles from the State Capitol:

California School Boards Association - Public Affairs & Community Engagement Representatives

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 positions based in the following locations: Southeast L.A. and North L.A./Ventura. Salary based on experience. Please apply at:

California School Boards Association - Legislative Director

CSBA is seeking a Legislative Director to lead our Governmental Relations team to shape legislative and political strategy for CSBA’s statewide agenda. You will act as a liaison between legislative, educational, and public communities. If you are interested in leading a team of legislative advocates to influence opinion in favor of public education, please apply through our website. Position is located in West Sacramento. Learn more and apply here:

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

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