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Thursday, December, 15, 2011

 

The Decision Loom

If you were watching every minute of the State Redistricting Commission hearings, and wondering “what in the heck is Commissioner Barabba thinking?” then you may have your answer.  While the rest of us were scratching our heads, Barabba was penning a book

This is not the exposé of the inner workings of the commission that we were expecting… we will have to wait for Michael Ward’s book for that.  It is instead a framework for how organizations can make complex decisions in a rapidly changing world. 

Maybe this book will come in handy for the thousands of school districts, cities, and other local elected governments dealing with the new California Voting Rights Act.  The law, enacted in 2002 is now all-grows-up.  It has been used to transform at-large election systems in the Central Valley to by-district elections, and lawsuits are popping up all over the state.

Until yesterday the only backer of these lawsuits has been the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights, the organization that essentially wrote the original Polanco bill that created the CVRA.  This changed with the filing of a lawsuit against the at-large city of Escondido.

The Escondido lawsuit is being led by the Building and Construction trades that are supporting the Latino community in their claims of vote dilution.  In 123 years they have only elected one Latino despite comprising 49% of the population.  And the Mayor probably did himself no favors by speaking at a forum in favor of Arizona’s SB1070 immigration law the day before the Latino community filed its demand letter.

This lawsuit not only impacts Escondido, it sends a message to other at-large municipalities.  If groups other than the Lawyers Committee begin filing claims that would be a significant acceleration – potentially driving more municipalities to convert to districted systems.

Back to State government, decisions are also looming for the Senate Referendum and Congressional lawsuits. 

The validity rate for the Senate referendum signatures has improved in the last couple days, and a court is expected to rule soon on whether a new set of lines will be drawn for the June election.  If that happens expect a flurry of activity as all the Commission’s work is redone by a set of Special Masters in a period of weeks, not months. 

The Congressional lawsuit is also lingering and, if successful, could at a minimum force a court redraw of the seats in Los Angeles. 

The Decision Loom could also be good reading in LA where no good decision goes unpunished.  Putting out contracts, recinding contracts, hiring, firing... it's all juicy (or smelly) stuff that has more layers than the state redraw ever did.  We have been trying to stay out of the fray, but the drama keeps pulling us back in.

And while Redistricting is the name of the report, the potential bigger player in our upcoming elections is the new Top Two primary election system.  An article I wrote for Capitol Weekly leads today’s Election Preview Section.  That and a mountain of redistricting and election articles can be found in today’s report – basically a summary for the past two weeks.

State

Which State Senate Maps Will Show the Way?
KCET
No one can predict the success of opponents' challenges. Judges may find that the lines are constitutionally drawn. Voters may decide that the independent redistricting commission did its job and that the current lines will stand. This type of uncertainty is less than helpful. Incumbents and would-be-candidates do not know the shape and size of their districts. Imagine a scenario in which one set of district lines are in place for a primary election and another set for the general. Chaos would ensue.

How 'likely' is state GOP to succeed?
Ventura County Star
Next month, the California Supreme Court will confront a politically-charged decision that will have broad implications for the future of public policy in this state. Or not. It could be that statisticians, rather than lawyers, will be the ones making the most persuasive arguments as justices consider whether the new state Senate districts created by the Citizens Redistricting Commission should be in force for the 2012 elections. Here's the situation: Political analysts from both parties agree that under the commission-approved Senate maps Democrats have a near-certain chance of gaining a two-thirds majority in the Legislature's upper house.

Supreme Court to hear redistricting case on expedited basis
Lake County News
The California Supreme Court on Friday morning issued an “order to show cause” concerning the petition in Vandermost v. Bowen (S198387), which addresses the district lines that will be used for the California state Senate elections in 2012. The petition, filed last Friday, Dec. 2, seeks relief under article XXI, section 3 of the California Constitution, on the ground that a referendum measure seeking to invalidate the Citizens Redistricting Commission’s certified state Senate district map is likely to qualify for the November 2012 ballot and hence stay implementation of the map.

Redistricting writ petition: January just got busier for the Supreme Court
At The Lectern
Just when we thought January was going to be a relatively easy month at the Supreme Court, the court issues an order today that will make the new year a lot more eventful.  The order regards the writ petition filed only a week ago seeking to stay implementation of the newly certified State Senate district map. Redistricting is occurring this year under a new system, where a citizen’s commission instead of the Legislature draws the maps.

To End Gridlock, End Gerrymandering
Forbes
The heated response from the political establishment and unfolding legal challenges is a sign that the California redistricting process is a step in the right direction. In a representative opinion piece, Tom Del Baccaro, the chairman of the California Republican Party, accused the commission of violating the state constitution in order to “extinguish an existing Republican Senate Seat.” He was referring to a new district that was “separated by miles and miles of mountains.”

California Supreme Court to fast-track ruling on Senate maps
The Sacramento Bee
The California Supreme Court expects to rule "as early as the end of January" on which state Senate districts would apply to next year's state elections if a referendum challenging newly drawn maps qualifies for the November ballot. The high court released an expedited briefing schedule today in response to a petition by Fairness and Accountability in Redistricting, a Republican-backed group pushing to kill the Senate maps drawn by the Citizens Redistricting Commission.

New California Senate maps still up in the air
The Sacramento Bee
California law says that three weeks hence, on Dec. 30, candidates can begin taking out papers to run for legislative and congressional seats next year. But while the state's redistricting commission completed its work nearly four months ago, it's still not certain whether all of its districts will survive because of a referendum to overturn the state Senate maps, maneuvers in the state Supreme Court and a U.S. Justice Department review.

New district maps threaten Republicans' seats in Congress
The Los Angeles Times
Reporting from Los Angeles and Washington— It's no secret that deep blue California has been a tough place for Republicans, with GOP registration falling to less than one-third of voters and Democrats holding all the statewide offices. Now, new political maps threaten to cost several of the party's prominent congressmen their jobs. That is especially true for some of the California Republican delegation's long-serving members.

How likely is 'likely'?
Ventura County Star
The California Supreme Court today issued an order to show cause whether the court should intervene to stop implementation of the new Senate district maps approved in August by the Citizens Redistricting Commission. The court ordered an extemely expedited review, saying it will hear oral arguments in early January and issue an opinion by the end of January, so that no delay will disrupt the 2012 primary election calendar. At issue will be the definition of the word "likely."

New California Senate maps still up in the air
The Sacramento Bee
California law says that three weeks hence, on Dec. 30, candidates can begin taking out papers to run for legislative and congressional seats next year. But while the state's redistricting commission completed its work nearly four months ago, it's still not certain whether all of its districts will survive because of a referendum to overturn the state Senate maps, maneuvers in the state Supreme Court and a U.S. Justice Department review. The underlying stakes – although never mentioned in the documents – are whether Democrats can gain a two-thirds majority in the 40-member Senate and thus the power to raise taxes without Republican votes.

California Redistricting Is Bad News in Congress for Both Parties
The Front Page Online
A bit over 10 months from today we will know the resolution of the great California redistricting controversy, and we will find out just how much clout this state will lose in Congress. One thing almost certain: Even if Republicans succeed in their lawsuits and other efforts to overturn the remaps of Congressional and state Senate districts drawn by the first-time-ever Citizens Redistricting Commission, the districts in play in the election of next Nov. 6 will not look very different from what the commission drew.

California's 2011 Redistricting: Challenges And Controversy
PPIC
California's new voting districts have drawn criticism. California voters recently gave authority for the decennial drawing of new U.S. House, Assembly, State Senate, and Board of Equalization districts to an independent citizens commission. The commission’s new maps, released in August, were greeted with concern—including assertions of inadequate minority representation, accusations of covert partisan mapmaking to favor Democrats, and complaints that the maps fail to respect certain geographic criteria the commission was required to consider. Opponents have submitted signatures to the secretary of state for a referendum against the new State Senate maps.

Group files petition with Calif. SC for redistricting referendum
Legal Newsline
A citizens group on Friday filed a petition with the California Supreme Court, asking it to prepare for the "likely qualification" of a state Senate redistricting referendum. More than 711,000 referendum signatures were submitted to counties on or before Nov. 15 and are now being verified, the group Fairness and Accountability in Redistricting said. It needs 504,760 valid voter signatures to make the ballot. FAIR describes itself as a "citizens group aimed at holding the state's Citizens Redistricting Commission accountable for creating fair districts in California."

Democrats could pick up 5-6 congressional seats in California
KPCC
California’s new citizen-drawn redistricting map could profoundly affect which party will control the U.S. House of Representatives. After the last redistricting, exactly one of California’s 53 congressional districts switched parties. Kyle Kondik, a political analyst at the University of Virginia, has crunched the numbers. Kondik says this election year is different. He says there are "opportunities for Democrats to add maybe one, maybe as many as five or six seats if things break their way next November."

Why California will lose clout in Congress
Hanford Sentinel
Just a bit over 10 months from today we will all know the resolution of the great California redistricting controversy and we will also find out just how much clout this state will lose in Congress. One thing that’s almost certain: Even if Republicans succeed in their lawsuits and other efforts to overturn the remaps of congressional and state Senate districts drawn by the first-time-ever Citizens Redistricting Commission, the districts in play in the election of next Nov. 6 will not look very different from what the commission drew.

Redistricting back before Supreme Court
At The Lectern
If you mention “redistricting” and “Supreme Court” to election law insiders, they will probably think only of the Texas dispute now before the United States Supreme Court.  But California’s Supreme Court is now back in the redistricting business itself. A little over five weeks after the court summarily denied writ petitions challenging legislative district maps drawn by the new California Citizens Redistricting Commission, a new writ petition was filed Friday regarding the State Senate map.

Challenges to state Senate redistricting moving forward
Redlands Daily Facts
A Republican group is asking the California Supreme Court to shelve the newly drawn state Senate district map, even though the court previously declined to take up such a challenge. The petition was filed Friday by a group called Fairness and Accountability in Redistricting. The group has submitted more than 711,000 signatures for a referendum to stop the new electoral map from being used in next year's election. FAIR wants the high court to prepare for the referendum by either using the previous Senate district map or combining two new Assembly districts for every Senate seat for the 2012 election.

Republicans fight to toss new district lines
The Orange County Register
Turned down by the California Supreme Court in an effort to have new congressional districts thrown out, a group of Republicans has filed a federal suit arguing that those districts violate the Voting Rights Act. It's an unusual instance of GOP filing suit on behalf of Latinos and blacks. Meanwhile, a proposed ballot measure seeking to throw out the new state Senate lines has had its signature petitions submitted – but it could take until March to verify the signatures and clear the measure for the ballot, Secretary of State Debra Bowen said.

Some think fairness is just so unfair
The Tribune
In hindsight, maybe I was a bit rough on the guy. After all, he was just trying to make a few bucks. He’d probably lost his job and was doing what he had to do to put food on the table. But he annoyed me when he stuck a petition under my nose in front of the County Courthouse and asked me to sign so that “the people” could vote on redistricting. That simple plea no doubt netted more than a few scrawls, at $2 a pop. Who doesn’t want the people to decide things?

The Long and Winding Road to Redistricting Reform
KCET
Apparently adhering to the old adage, "if at first you don't succeed, try, try again," opponents of the newly-drawn state and congressional maps are doing just that. In 2008 and 2010 Californians voted to take the power to draw districts out of the hands of the legislature and give it to a 14-member independent redistricting commission. In the past the legislature did an incredibly successful job of drawing district lines that assured their easy re-election. Over the past 10 years, since the last redistricting, only one congressional seat changed party hands.

There's No Fortune Telling in Redistricting
Santa Monica Patch
The problem with California's new redistricting process is that disputed new boundaries remain up in the air, according to Loyola Law School professor Jessica Levinson. "Anyone who says they know what's going on, doesn't know," Levinson told the Santa Monica Democratic Club on Wednesdsay. Levinson met with club members to talk about the redistricting process and her own role in the drafting of Proposition 11. But with multiple challenges being brought against the new assembly and senate districts, Levinson's read of the situation wasn't superficial.

L.A. Voters Fight 'Racial Gerrymandering'
Courthouse News Service
Five voters, including former Republican Congressman George Radanovich, say California's redrawing of three congressional districts favors incumbents and deprives minorities of the opportunity "to elect candidates of choice." Radanovich, 56, is lead plaintiff in the federal complaint against California Secretary of State Debra Bowen and the Citizens Redistricting Commission. He claims the newly drawn 37th, 43rd and 44th districts violate residents' rights under the 14th Amendment and the Voting Rights Act.

Local

Redistricting Commission's Media Director Quits Amid Criticism
North Hollywood-Toluca Lake Patch
The media director for the commission that will recommend City Council district boundaries for the next decade resigned over the weekend, citing concerns by some commissioners that she was a registered lobbyist and was not properly qualified for the position. City News Service first reported Friday that Vanessa Rodriguez has been registered as a lobbyist with the city since 2007, currently with Mercury Public Affairs.

Political redistricting meeting or Pride Parade — choose one
The San Francisco Examiner
When setting up what could be a heated public meeting in San Francisco about redrawing the state’s political boundaries, you might want to invite The City’s sizable — and politically active — gay population. But by default, that’s exactly what the California Citizens Redistricting Commission failed to do when it scheduled the sole public meeting for region 8 on the same day as the San Francisco Pride Parade and Festival, according to an influential San Francisco political group.

Solano college trustees discuss redistricting
The Reporter
Changes in how voters elect Solano Community College trustees could be in place for the next board election. Currently, seven trustees represent four separate areas of the county. Under a board-endorsed plan, seven trustees will still comprise the board, but how they are elected could change. Changes are needed due to new Census data showing population shifts throughout Solano County. Redistricting takes place every 10 years to ensure trustee districts have approximately the same number of residents.

Small group looks at college redistricting
The Daily Democrat
Whatever the new boundaries will be for the Yuba Community College District, some suggest the trustees should represent the whole district not just their specific area. "You need people in those offices who are willing to look at the district ... in an equitable way," said former trustee Alan Flory. Flory was one of 11 people to attend the redistricting forum at Woodland Community College Monday night. Most in attendance worked for the district or were involved in education.

WJUSD trustees recommend redistricting map
The Daily Democrat
The Woodland school district is moving forward with redistricting as it waits for the state to decide whether it will receive a waiver to avoid a costly election. During a presentation Thursday, the Redistricting Advisory Committee recommended Plan 2 as the best of four possible maps. The map divides the district in seven areas, rather than three current areas where the seven trustees are elected at-large. Government entities throughout the state are moving away from at-large elections as they are more likely to be challenged under the California Voting Rights Act.

Perry to testify at D9 redistricting hearing
Intersections South LA
Councilwoman Jan Perry is scheduled to testify at the first public hearing of the City’s Redistricting Commission in District 9, which will be held tomorrow from 11 am to 2 pm at the Santee Educational Complex. The school is located at 1921 South Maple Avenue 90011. Perry, who will be joining community members and stakeholders from her district, says she wants to get people involved early in a process that will shape their political representation for the next ten years.

Redistricting Process May Fail the Smell Test. Again.
Los Angeles Downtown News
Public meetings about redrawing the boundaries of Los Angeles’ 15 City Council districts began last week, with a session for the Ninth District, which includes much of Downtown, slated for Saturday, Dec. 10 (after Los Angeles Downtown News went to press). A total of 15 meetings, one in each district, are scheduled through Jan. 10. Redistricting, which takes place once every 10 years, is not the sexiest subject — it’s hard to get most people excited about making maps which ensure that bizarrely shaped territories have approximately the same number of residents and keep together so-called “communities of interest.”

Redistricting Director's Selection of Lobbyist as Media Director Draws Criticism
North Hollywood-Toluca Lake Patch
The commission that will decide City Council district boundaries for the next decade chose a registered lobbyist this week to be its media director, following two firms' withdrawal of bids to do the work after reports surfaced they had lobbying clients at City Hall. Commission Executive Director Andrew Westall, who is also the president of the Greater Toluca Lake Neighborhood Council, announced the selection of Vanessa Rodriguez to be the panel's media director in an email this week to commissioners.

Redistricting Meetings On Tap
Los Angeles Downtown News
Every 10 years, following the release of U.S. census data, the city redraws the 15 City Council districts so that each area has an equitable share of the Los Angeles population, and to ensure that changing "communities of interest" stick together. In theory, it's an exercise in democratic community building and mapmaking. In practice, however, redistricting is often overlooked by the public and fraught with power-grabbing politics.

Citrus Trustees Approve Area Redistricting Maps
Glendora Patch
After much discussion and revisions over many months, the Citrus College Board of Trustees approved required changes to trustee boundary areas. The approved plan reduces much of the prior gerrymandering and eliminates "backpacking" of Trustee Area 2, where it crept over the mountains from Claremont and to the west to include Azusa. The approved plan also keeps the cities of Azusa and Glendora mostly whole, something board members and community leaders previously defined as crucial.

LA Redistricting: Keeping the Politicians Out of the Politics
City Watch
Redistricting … as in reshaping the boundaries of LA’s City Council Districts … rarely scores as the hot topic around the proverbial water cooler. The every-ten-year process is one the most under-the-radar-important exercise in government. Yet, when the sun rises on the new maps this spring, numerous Angelenos will be living in a different council district and will be represented by someone they did not vote for. Neighborhood Councils will be affected. Some NCs will see their boundaries split by new City Council boundaries. Some could lose a City Hall relationship they have worked hard to cultivate and will have to start anew.

District Releases Draft Redistricting Maps
Capistrano Unified School District
Capistrano Unified School District has released preliminary drafts of adjusted trustee area boundaries, which will be reviewed and discussed at the Board of Trustees’ meeting on Monday, Dec. 12. The five drafts, drawn by National Demographics Corporation, are considered a starting point that will stimulate discussion, ideas, and direction for the consultant to develop a final plan for approval. The maps can be found at http://bit.ly/uALe24. The trustee area boundary adjustment is a process that occurs once every decade after data from the U.S. Census is updated.

Downtown-Area Meetings for City Council Redistricting Kick off Saturday
Blog Downtown
Between now and July 2012, the lines that split Los Angeles into its 15 council districts must be redrawn to "contain, as nearly as practicable, equal portions of the total population of the City." That should be a simple process, right? Just take the Census Bureau's count of 3,792,621, divide it by 15, and draw lines that place 252,841 people in each district. In reality, though, the politicized process is never quite that easy. This Saturday, public meetings get underway to introduce those who live in the three Downtown-area districts to the redistricting process and to collect input on how the boundaries should change.

Woodland campus to hold forum for Yuba Community College District's redistricting
The Daily Democrat
Yuba Community College District will hold a meeting Monday at its Woodland campus to discuss its shift from four to seven districts, matching the number of trustees on its board. The redistricting forum will be at 7 p.m. in Room 800 of Woodland Community College. Four other meetings will be held districtwide, starting today at the Clear Lake Campus. The proposed maps for new trustee districts will be presented and the public will have an opportunity to comment.

SCC board votes on preferred redistricting map
The Daily Republic
With few words, Solano Community College board members voted on Wednesday to pick a preferred map for how the district should be divided into areas, the method for which trustees are elected. The board voted 6-0, with Phil McCaffrey absent, on an option that was presented publicly for the first time Wednesday. The new boundary lines will change the way college trustees are elected. As it currently stands, there are seven trustees elected to four areas, so three of the areas have two representatives.

LA Redistricting Commission Meeting: December 15th
Yo! Venice!
The City of Los Angeles’ Redistricting Commission is holding a series of public meetings for residents to give input on updated boundaries for City Council districts, Councilmember Bill Rosendahl announced today. Every 10 years, the City is required to redraw its council district maps and make sure each district has roughly the same number of residents.  An appointed Redistricting Commission will take testimony throughout the city and draft maps as well as solicit additional testimony, and then send the revised maps to the council for approval.

Public Hearings Need to Be Accessible to Students! City Council Should Delay the Redistricting Hearing
The Berkeley Student District Campaign
Today, the Student District Campaign sent a letter to City Council asking them to delay the second public hearing on redistricting. It is currently scheduled for January 17th, the first day of class in the new Spring 2012 semester. We feel that this is unfair to students: holding hearings on the first day of class makes it extremely difficult for students to attend, as the beginning of a new semester is one of the most busy, stressful times of the semester.

In Case You Missed It: Santa Ana Ward Realignment Developed In Secret
Public CEO
The City of Santa Ana is rescheduling the public hearing proposing to change the City’s Ward boundaries. The public hearing will be held on Monday, December 19, 2011, at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber, located at 22 Civic Center Plaza, in which testimony will be received and where any person having an interest in, objection to, or suggestion regarding the making of changes in Ward boundary lines may appear before the City Council.

Calif. lawsuits could reshape school board
The Daily Democrat
Statewide lawsuits could reshape the Woodland Joint Unified School Board of Trustees, prompting a move toward district-based elections. Citing a wave of lawsuits based off the 2001 California Voting Rights Act, more and more local governments are turning toward district-based elections instead of at-large elections. In doing so, they're pre-empting a clause in the law that a court could use to force them to make the switch at a later date.

Yuba Community College to host Dec. 8 redistricting forum
Lake County News
Yuba Community College District is planning a forum this week to introduce community members to proposed new boundaries for trustee areas. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 8, in room 603 at Yuba College’s Clear Lake Campus, 15880 Dam Road Extension, Clearlake. California Education Code requires each California community college district that elects its board of trustees “by trustee area” to adjust its trustee area plan in a process that follows the completion of the US Census, district officials reported.

Board to Hold Redistricting Public Hearing December 14
AC Transit
On Wednesday, December 14, at 5:00 p.m., the AC Transit Board of Directors will receive public comment on the proposed plan to adjust AC Transit’s ward boundaries. The adjustments are designed to rebalance the population among the five electoral wards based on 2010 U.S. Census data. The hearing will take place at AC Transit’s General Offices, 1600 Franklin Street, Oakland. The public is invited to comment before or at the hearing. The plan development process began earlier this year, with staff preparing two potential boundary reconfigurations.

Peralta Community College District’s Redistricting Process
Peralta Community College District
The Peralta Community College District Board of Trustees will hold a public meeting to consider five alternatives for redistricting the Trustee boundaries, and will vote on adopting a redistricting alternative at their December 6, 2011 meeting. Four of the proposed alternatives were presented and discussed, and public input was invited at the Board of Trustees’ meeting of May 10, 2011, and at public hearings held at each of the Peralta Colleges during May 2011.

Seven districts will cover Yuba College region
appealdemocrat.com
By this time next year, the seven trustees of Yuba Community College District should each have their own area to represent. A plan to transition from four trustee areas into seven is ongoing with plans to have new district maps finalized within a few months in time for seats up for election in November. A series of public forums is scheduled this month for the public to comment on the proposal. The redistricting coincides with similar plans throughout the state and in various local government and school districts in line with population changes stemming from the 2010 census.

Maps reveal proposed trustee areas for K-8 district
Sign On San Diego
Three map proposals that divide the Escondido Union School District into five trustee voting areas were presented to the school board and public for the first time Tuesday night. Justin Levitt, a senior analyst for National Demographics Corp., told the board, district officials and about a dozen members of the public that the draft maps represent a starting point for discussion. Levitt also presented demographic information about the city’s voting population and a detailed breakdown of the data for each of the proposed trustee areas.

BART to redraw political map for board elections
San Jose Mercury News
The BART board is poised to redraw the boundaries of its nine political districts on Thursday as support builds for an option that divides Contra Costa County into fewer districts. At stake is clout on the nine-member board, which approves fares, service levels, extensions and policy for the three-county rail system. The two BART board members from Contra Costa County contend their area has limited representation and a diluted political voice because the county is divided up between five different BART districts.

You Could Be Moving and Not Know It
City Watch
LA’s redistricting process begins this month. The goal is to have district map drafts ready sometime in February. It also means that your Council District boundaries could change and you could have a new City Councilperson to make friends with. In addition to new council representation, your city services could be affected for the next ten years. This is one of those government exercises citizens need to track and participate in. It can make a difference in your life … at least as it relates to City Hall.

Redistricting and San Mateo County
San Mateo County Medical Association
With the redistricting process having come to a close, politicians have been focused on California’s new method of having citizens draw Congressional, State Senate, Assembly and Board of Equalization districts. This new process will be debated in the years ahead.   The Commission’s task was to follow the Voting Rights Act by creating majority-minority districts where necessary, meet ethnic benchmarks in four specific counties, and then keep cities, counties and communities of interest whole.

Candidates

Huber won't seek re-election to Assembly; cites personal issues, redistricting
Recordnet.com
Assemblywoman Alyson Huber, D-El Dorado Hills, faced with major personal issues and a redrawn district that leans conservative, has announced that she will not seek re-election. The 39-year-old Huber twice represented the 10th Assembly District in the state Legislature. That district included Lodi, Woodbridge and Acampo in San Joaquin County and all of Amador County in addition to parts of Sacramento and El Dorado counties. After redistricting, her district boundaries were redrawn with a larger Republican constituency.

Who’s picking CSUN’s president?
Daily Sundial
With President Jolene Koester retiring at the end of the semester, the Northridge Presidential Search Committee has been working hard to find her replacement. The search committee consists of the Advisory Committee to the Trustees Committee for the Selection of the President and the Trustees Committee for the Selection of the President itself, said Liz Chapin, CSU spokeswoman. “The trustees committee is responsible for the recruitment, selection and appointment of the campus president,” she said.

Sandre Swanson will challenge Loni Hancock for state Senate
The Oakland Tribune
Assemblyman Sandre Swanson confirmed Tuesday that he'll challenge incumbent Loni Hancock for her newly drawn state Senate seat next year, setting up a term-limit-fueled, Democrat-on-Democrat grudge match that's sure to divide many East Bay allies. Swanson, D-Oakland, had said in late September he was seriously considering the run, right after state Senate Democratic leaders issued poll results showing Hancock, D-Oakland, had a wide lead over him in a one-on-one matchup for the 9th District seat -- a clear shot across Swanson's bow.

Congressional Candidates Challenge Hunter On His Record
East County Magazine
The “failed” leadership of Congressman Duncan Hunter was the topic of discussion Wednesday night at the Ramona Forum.  Candidates in both the Democratic and Republican party vying to unseat the incumbent Congressman in the newly created 50th district introduced themselves to the voting public—and took shots at Hunter’s record. “Citizens in the new district 50 have been presented with a golden opportunity to send a message to the nation and set a new standard,” said Democratic candidate and Crest resident David Secor.

The race to replace Marti Emerald
San Diego City Beat
Much has been made of the troika of Republican San Diego City Council candidates that mayoral hopeful Carl DeMaio has touted on the 2012 campaign trail as the team he needs to make comprehensive pension reform a reality. The word “slate” has been bandied about quite a bit, apparently to the consternation of DeMaio’s political handlers at Revolvis Consulting, a firm that also happens to be running the campaigns of conservative candidates Ray Ellis in District 1, Mark Kersey in District 5 and Scott Sherman in District 7.

Alarcón moves again ahead of new race
Contra Costa Times
Still facing criminal charges for alleged fraud about his residency, City Councilman Richard Alarcón recently changed homes again in preparation for yet another run for the state Legislature. Alarcón's new home in Mission Hills is still in his current City Council district, but the move brings new public attention to the residency issue, which will be heard in court in January. Alarcón is facing prosecution for a variety of charges related to allegations that he lived in a home outside his district and lied about his residence on official documents.

Alyson Huber's home default comes amid tangled fiscal, personal events
The Sacramento Bee
Democratic Assemblywoman Alyson Huber is in default on a million-dollar mortgage in El Dorado Hills as she copes with a contentious divorce, political redistricting and a rocky real estate market. The tangled fiscal chain of events could complicate her efforts to seek re-election in a neighboring Assembly district, where she will run because a state commission redrew her current district to tilt strongly Republican.

Is the Disney Company Trying to Buy the 69th Assembly District?
New Santa Ana
Anaheim has quite a few Latino residents but you wouldn’t know it by looking at SOAR’s membership list. So who really is SOAR?  Well, if you look at their media page, you will find exactly ONE article, entitled “Disneyland Resort generates $4.7 billion annually to economy.”  There you go.  SOAR really is all about the mouse.  And the mouse wants Daly to represent them in the State Legislature. From what I hear, so does Jose Solorio, the legislator Daly is hoping to replace.  Word has it that Solorio’s fellow Latino lawmakers are laughing behind his back as he scurries around Sacramento pimping for Daly.

Councilman's address may change campaign plan
Huntington Beach Independent
Huntington Beach Councilman Joe Carchio, who has said he is considering a run for the state Assembly, will have to rethink his original plans if he enters the race. Carchio said in November that he was considering running for the newly formed 72nd Assembly District, which covers part of Huntington Beach and surrounding cities. However, he actually lives just over the boundary line in the 74th district, according to the Orange County Registrar of Voters.

Leading Assembly candidate Michele Martinez lands big endorsements
New Santa Ana
While the Disney Company, through the SOAR PAC, has been propping up Tom Daly’s lame campaign for the 69th Assembly District, he is being outworked by his leading opponent – Santa Ana Councilwoman Michele Martinez.  Just look at the endorsements she has racked up thus far: Assemblyman Ben Hueso, Assemblyman Roger Hernandez, Assemblyman Ricardo Lara, Assemblyman Henry Perea, Assemblyman Jose Solorio…….

Flurry of endorsements in San Diego races
Sign On San Diego
It’s the season for giving and the best gift political candidates could hope to receive is a campaign endorsement, of which there have been plenty handed out in recent weeks for those running in San Diego city races. In the race for mayor, Rep. Bob Filner, a Democrat, has received the expected backing of the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, an umbrella organization that includes 133 labor groups in the region. He also picked up the support of San Diego Democrats for Equality, the former San Diego Democratic Club.

Feuding Over L.A. City Council’s 1st Black President
Politic 365
Some people just cannot to be happy for others. Or, at least their actions make it seem that way. Turn to the Los Angeles City Council recently when the group voted Herb Wesson, Jr. as their first Black council president. Many of his fellow council members were on-hand to cast their ballot in favor of Wesson. However, the other two African Americans that serve with him, Jan Perry and Bernard Parks, were strangely absent and did not vote. That’s cold.

Opinion: The Man Heralded as Authentic Isn't
Moorpark Patch
Redistricting has given Ventura County area what will be one of the tightest and most closely watched elections in California: State Sen. Fran Pavley, Democrat, vs. State Sen. Tony Strickland, Republican. Both clearly represent their party's views and both have their roots in Moorpark—Pavley, as a former teacher for decades at MUSD and Strickland, as a longtime resident. The gloves will be off. Taking a look at the national picture, this weekend belonged to the Republicans as they squared off in Iowa at Drake University.

Former San Marino mayor launches Assembly race
The Los Angeles Times
The crowded race for an open Assembly seat in the San Gabriel Valley just got more so. Matthew Lin, a surgeon and a former mayor of San Marino, has announced he’s seeking the 49th District seat that will be vacated by termed-out Assemblyman Mike Eng (D-Monterey Park). Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca and Supervisor Mike Antonovich were among Lin’s supporters as he formally launched his campaign this weekend at Garfield Medical Center.

Top Huffman donors defend corporate pollutors
The Humboldt Herald
The AVA takes a look at the big money — and bad actors — behind leading Congressional candidate Jared Huffman’s campaign for California’s newly formed second district. Huffman led recent polls among the pool of mostly Democratic candidates. Like most candidates for Congress, Jared Huffman’s donor base reflects the realities of a decades-long class war waged by the top 1-5% against the bottom half of America. Huffman’s biggest and most well-organized donors are wealthy Marin County lawyers, real estate investors, bankers, and executives of major corporations.

Lines Redrawn, Longtime Allies Fight for a Seat
The New York Times
Democrat-on-Democrat warfare has returned to the San Fernando Valley. After a tiff over the redrawing of their adjacent Congressional districts a decade ago, Representative Brad Sherman and his fellow California Democrat, Representative Howard L. Berman, both won re-election and went on to work cordially — if not lovingly — on home-state legislation to help the region they both serve as House members. Evidently, those days are over. This redistricting go-round, the two popular, veteran congressmen find themselves running for the same seat in the most high-profile of about a dozen primary races that mark the decennial return of internecine fights that can severely rupture relationships of House members who sit on the same side of the aisle.

Newly Drawn Assembly Districts Could Lead to Competitive Races
KCET
Opponents are going both to the ballot box (regarding the State Senate lines) and to the courthouse (regarding the Congressional lines). It remains to be seen whether newly drawn legislative districts -- drawn for the first time in the state's history by an independent redistricting commission -- will stand, or whether they will change as a result of either a judicial decision or the voters' decision. However, despite uncertainly mainly surrounding the state senate and congressional lines, a number of soon-to-be candidates have kicked off the races for our state's lower house.

Former speaker eyes Pavley's state senate seat
The Malibu Times
Former Assembly Speaker Bob Hertzberg said he is pondering a run for the state Senate in the newly drawn 27th District, where a political battle already is shaping up between Senate incumbents Fran Pavley and Tony Strickland. Hertzberg, a Democrat who served as speaker from 2000 to 2002, said last week he may enter the race, at least in part to assure the defeat of Strickland, a Republican. “I'm looking at it,” Hertzberg said, “for the purpose of helping the (Senate) Democratic Caucus.” Hertzberg has endorsed Pavley in the past.

Prominent SM farmer to seek 4th District seat
The Lompoc Record
Peter Adam, a prominent Santa Maria farmer who is vice president of Adam Brothers Farming, threw his hat in the ring for Santa Barbara County’s 4th District supervisor seat on Wednesday, saying the current board is not making “wise financial decisions.” Adam, 48, comes from a long line of Santa Maria-area farmers dating back to the 1860s, and Adam Brothers Farming has been one of the Central Coast’s primary vegetable growers, packers and shippers for 45 years. “I think that there’s some tough times coming, and I think that somebody better be ready to say no to some things,” Adam said. “Economically, California’s in trouble and I don’t think there’s any quick fix.”

Three area Republican congressmen endorse Mitt Romney
The Los Angeles Times
Three Southern California  Republican  congressmen have decided to throw their support behind GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney, the Romney campaign announced this week. Reps. Jerry Lewis  of Redlands, Ken Calvert of Corona and Brian Bilbray of Carlsbad  are backing Romney, once the seeming front-runner for Republican nominee next year, at a time when former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has overtaken the former Massachusetts governor in some polls.

Hot Assembly races pick up steam
The Los Angeles Times
Several Los Angeles-area Assembly district races continue to build steam, even though the candidate filing period hasn’t yet begun. Redistricting has produced new political maps -- and new opportunities -- and some contenders have been raising money and lining up endorsements for weeks or even months. In the San Gabriel Valley’s newly drawn 49th District, former Rosemead Mayor John Tran, now a member of the El Monte Union High School board, added to his list of backers Kien Tiet, board member-elect of the Temple City Unified School District; and Robert Mike Barrios, a member of the El Monte City School  District board.

2 more candidates enter race for redrawn Assembly district seat
The Daily Republic
A retired fire chief and a union negotiator have entered the race for the 11th state Assembly District, bringing the total number of candidates to five. Gene Gantt, a Vacaville native and retired Benicia fire chief, announced Tuesday his intention to run in the June election. Rio Vista resident Patricia Hernandez is also running. Gantt graduated from Vacaville High School, served for 35 years as a firefighter and now teaches emergency preparedness at Solano Community College.

Candidates Running Against Hunter Outline Platforms in Ramona
Santee Patch
Corporate greed, the Occupy movement, lobbyist donations and the military industrial complex were key issues Wednesday night, when three people running against Rep. Duncan D. Hunter in the June primary appeared at a forum in Ramona. Hunter represents the 52nd Congressional District which includes northeastern and central San Diego county. Much of the area will be renumbered as the 50th Congressional District under redistricting and will go as far north as Temecula for the June election.

Labor council endorses Peters for Congress
Sign On San Diego
The San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to endorse Democrat Scott Peters for the 52nd Congressional District. He also secured the support of the Chicano Democratic Association of San Diego. Peters has spent the early months of the campaign striking a moderate tone in the closely watched primary race against Republican Rep. Brian Bilbray and former Democratic Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña. Republican John Stahl also is set to challenge in June 2012.

California Members Are by Berman’s Side
Roll Call
California Democratic Reps. Howard Berman and Brad Sherman have worked together in Congress for 15 years, but the next year could find them spending millions of dollars telling voters why only one of them should return to Washington. Their western San Fernando Valley matchup is expected to be one of the most expensive House races ever and has already split the delegation, with 23 of California's 32 other Democrats endorsing Berman and two backing Sherman.

Lois Capps, Bill Monning pick up endorsements from Tri-Counties Central Labor Council
The Tribune
State Senate candidate Bill Monning and Rep. Lois Capps, both Central Coast Democrats, have picked up endorsements for next year’s election from the Tri-Counties Central Labor Council. Capps is running for reelection in the 24th Congressional District. Republican Abel Maldonado, a former Assemblyman, state senator and lieutenant governor, has announced that he will run against Capps.

Congressional Candidate Norman Solomon on KHUM Today: Here’s Your Homework
Lost Coast Outpost
A Maryland native and a former reporter, for most of his adult life Solomon has been known as an independent media critic and a progressive intellectual. He has written 11 books, most of them inhabiting the intersection between militarism, corporate American and mass media. If you’re unfamiliar with his work — and few people are entirely unfamiliar — you can think of Solomon occupying roughly the same space as people like Howard Zinn or Naomi Wolf.

Redding businessman plans run for state Assembly
ChicoER.com
Businessman Rick Bosetti was to announce today that he will seek the Republican nomination for Assembly from the 1st District. In next year's primary, Bosetti will apparently run against Assemblyman Dan Logue, R-Lake Wildwood, said Justin Matheson, a spokesman for Bosetti's campaign. Logue has represented the 3th Assembly District, but with redistricting, he has moved into the 1st District. The 1st District includes Butte County's foothills, excluding the town of Paradise.

Commentary: 38th District Race needs a series of Debates!
The West Ranch Beacon
There is a real horse race in place for the 38th District State Assembly seat which will be vacated by Cameron Smyth in 2012 when he terms out of office. There are currently four candidates that have indicated that they will be running to fill that seat; Republicans Patricia McKeon, Scott Wilk, Paul Strickland, and Democrat Edward Headington. Last week, Scott Wilk sent an email inviting Patricia McKeon to a series of debates. As Mr. Wilk states; “Given the challenges the state faces, I think you’d agree voters deserve every opportunity to hear from all of the candidates in this race.”

Nick Popaditch for House District 53
Mimsy Were the Borogoves
We’re going to get a test of that here in San Diego. Nick Popaditch is going to run for the House of Representatives in the 53rd district. Redistricting moved him from the 51st to my district, and I’ll be proud to vote for him. It also pits him against Susan Davis as well as against whoever else chooses to run, given the new primary rules here. Even under normal circumstances this would not be easy. First, he would have to get through the dysfunctional party politics here; then he would have to go against Susan Davis in an area that almost never goes Republican.

Morrell and Dutton already battling it out
Inside Bay Area
Election Day may be about 11 months away, but campaigning for the 40th Assembly District seat has quickly progressed. Polling has been conducted, an endorsement has been made, fundraising has begun and the politicking has been ongoing. But this isn't your typical political race. Two well-known Republican lawmakers from Rancho Cucamonga - Senate Minority Leader Bob Dutton and Assemblyman Mike Morrell - are running against each other.

Huffman for the North Coast
Times-Standard
It has been the highest honor and truly a pleasure for me to have been able to serve the North Coast for the past twenty years. First in the State Senate, and for the last 13 years in Congress, my relationship with the North Coast has been a high point of my public service career. The people I've met and worked with in many cases have become my friends. The issues important to North Coast residents are important to me. In short, I love the North Coast and the people who work and live there.

Marti Emerald Now Alone in Race for New District 9 City Council Seat
Mission Times Courier
City Heights-resident Georgette Gomez said she is pulling her candidacy from the District 9 race and will be endorsing current District 7 Councilwoman Marti Emerald for the seat. Emerald’s College Area home was redistricted out of District 7 and into District 9 on Aug. 25 by the San Diego Redistricting Commission. She announced she would be running to represent constituents of the newly-formed 9th District in late August. Gomez is the third candidate to pull out of the race to date, following late October exits of City Heights community activist Katherine Eaton and Kensington attorney Araceli Martinez.

Jones, Giacomini announce bids for Shasta County supervisor
redding.com
At least two people already are vying to unseat Shasta County Supervisor Glenn Hawes. Redding City Councilman and former mayor Patrick Jones, and Pam Giacomini, co-owner of Hat Creek Grown grass-fed beef, will challenge Hawes in the 2012 election, they said Wednesday. Giacomini, 53, who serves as the executive director of the Northeastern Californ