Shane Goldmacher is a former reporter for Capitol Weekly. He is a graduate of UC Berkeley, where he served as editor of the Berkeley Political Review.

E-mail Shane

  • National NAACP bucks CA chapter, backs tobacco tax initiative
  • NAACP's Huffman assailed for tobacco, telecom payments
  • Schwarzenegger targets the 'ElimiDate Voter'
  • Legislators tap Sacramento interests for campaign cash
  • New York developer's eminent-domain crusade comes to California
  • Schwarzenegger's election-year olive branches
  • Dems, Gov. tapped same spots for campaign cash
  • Schwarzenegger has a special interest in Capitol-area money
  • Schwarzenegger's million-dollar woman
  • The kings and queens of the California political quotation
  • All about Phil: Angelides is strategist in own campaign
  • "Women of the year" married to men of Legislature
  • With new law, chase for campaign cash becomes family affair
  • High school student gives governor $44,600
  • Going to interview with CTA? Be sure to look into the camera
  • David Crane: Arnold's other Democratic adviser
  • The rise of the blogs: How the GOP uses the Web to organize

  • 1A: 76.9-23.1
    1B: 61.3-38.7
    1C: 57.4-42.6
    1D: 56.6-43.4
    1E: 64-36
    83: 70.6-29.4
    84: 53.7-46.3
    85: 45.9-54.1
    86: 48-52
    87: 45.2-54.8
    88: 23-77
    89: 25.5-74.5
    90: 47.6-52.4

    U.S. Sen.
    Feinstein 59.7
    Mountjoy 34.9
    Schwarzenegger 55.8
    Angelides 39.2
    Lt. Gov
    Garamendi 49.5
    McClintock 44.9
    Atty. Gen.
    Brown 56.7
    Poochigian 37.9
    Sec. of state
    Bowen 48.5
    McPherson 44.7
    Lockyer 54.8
    Parrish 37
    Chiang 50.9
    Strickland 40.1
    Insur. Comm.
    Poizner 50.7
    Bustamante 38.9

    For complete election results click here.

    Angelides 48.2
    Westly 43.1
    Lt. Gov
    Garamendi 42.9
    Speier 39.3
    Figueroa 17.8
    Atty. Gen.
    Brown 63.2
    Delgadillo 36.8
    Sec. of state
    Bowen 61.1
    Ortiz 38.9
    Parrish 56.4
    Richman 43.6
    Democratic primary
    Chiang 53.4
    Dunn 46.6
    Republican primary
    Strickland 40.9
    Maldonado 36.9
    Insur. Comm.
    Bustamante 70.5
    Kraft 29.5
    Supt. of Schools
    O'Connell 52.5, avoids run-off

    For complete election results click here.

    73: 47.4-52.6
    74: 45-55
    75: 46.6-53.4
    76: 38-62
    77: 40.5-59.5
    78: 41.5-58.5
    79: 38.9-61.1
    80: 34.3-65.7

    For complete election results click here.

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    Thursday, August 31, 2006

    About those PPIC numbers

    I just looked back at the PPIC numbers and they are a bit surprising. First off, the housing bond, which has been consistently trailing behind the rest of the package in other polling, leads the pack with a solid 57 percent. And the levee bond, which conventional wisdom has as the third most popular measure, is at 56 percent while transportation (50) and education (51) are lagging.

    Meanwhile Prop 84, which is essentially a water bond back by the environmental community--a very popular constituency in California-- has only 40 percent support.

    Hot air

    The Assembly debate on AB 32 could only make one think about that old saying about laws and sausages...

    Compacts dead

    Or so it seems. The Agua Caliente compact just failed on the second attempt on the Assembly floor with only 35 votes and is on call.

    Here's Perata's statement from earlier today:

    While at the end of every session some major issues are able to be resolved quickly, because of the late date that the legislature received the gaming compacts that the administration has been working on for months (well past the Senate deadline), and because of the importance and complexity of these compacts, the Senate cannot act on them until the 2006-2007 session begins in December. We regret the disappointment and any financial burden to the tribal nations due to the lateness of the administration.

    Speaker Fabian Nunez sounded similar notes in an afternoon press conference, though with less emphasis on the late deals struck by the Schwarzenegger administration.

    PPIC polling

    Here's the latest from the PPIC on the governor's race:

    Voter preferences have changed little since one month ago (43% to 30%). Possible explanations for Schwarzenegger’s lead? While 82 percent of Republicans favor Schwarzenegger, only 58 percent of Democrats choose Angelides. Independents are choosing Schwarzenegger over Angelides by a wide margin (42% to 23%). Schwarzenegger’s lead in Republican-leaning areas is commanding – 30 points in the Central Valley and 23 points in the Southern California counties outside of Los Angeles. Angelides’ performance in key Democratic enclaves is less convincing: He leads by 10 points in the San Francisco Bay Area, while Schwarzenegger actually enjoys a slight lead in Los Angeles (41% to 36%). And finally, Democrats (42%) are much less likely than Republicans (58%) to be satisfied with their gubernatorial choices.

    And here's the numbers for the bond campaigns:

    Prop. 1B (Transportation-$19.9b)
    Yes: 50%
    No: 38%

    Prop. 1C (Housing-$2.8b)
    Yes: 57%
    No: 32%

    Prop. 1D (Education-$10.4b)
    Yes: 51%
    No: 39%

    Prop. 1E (Levees/Flood-$4.09b)
    Yes: 56%
    No: 35%

    Prop. 84 (Water/Parks-$5.4b)
    Yes: 40%
    No: 45%

    New in CW 08.31.06

    The softer-rock side of Jack O'Connell

    It's Friday afternoon at 4:45 p.m. but Jack O'Connell wants to talk. Most state workers already have gone home. It's late July--the doldrums of the political calendar--but O'Connell, California's top education official, still wants set up a weekend-postponing interview.

    And he doesn't even want to talk about education.

    "The day started out in a spectacular fashion this morning," O'Connell beams over the phone. "The rock group that has sold more albums than other American group in the history of the planet was on the Today show."

    Jack O'Connell isn't just a fan of Chicago, the 1960s rock band: He's a groupie.

    Flood legislation returns without builder-opposed provision

    Senate leader Don Perata has revived a flood-control package that he declared dead only a week ago. But a central proposal vehemently opposed by the building industry--which last week donated $500,000 to a Perata-controlled committee, and another $500,000 to a committee run by a close Perata associate--remains off the table.

    On Tuesday, exactly one year after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, Perata said he was folding several provisions from the shelved eight-bill flood package into new, yet-to-be introduced legislation.

    AB 32 deal

    So last night, as I was watching the NBC national news, on came a segment about AB 32 and the deal Gov. Schwarzenegger has struck with legislative leaders. The 20-second brief narrated by Brian Williams was about as much of a dream segment as the Schwarzenegger could hope for, with the mention of landmark environmental bill (in a pro-environment state) and a "clear break" from President Bush.

    Tuesday, August 29, 2006

    LAUSD stalls on first vote

    UPDATE:The bill eventually passed with a 43-24 vote last night. In the end, the only Dems to oppose were Canciamilla, Oropeza and Dymally. Those who did not vote were Koretz, Goldberg, Liu and Ridley-Thomas. Republicans Todd Spitzer and Roger Niello supported the bill.

    After more or less sailing through the Senate, AB 1381, the bill that would give LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa greater control over Los Angeles schools hit a roadblock on the Assembly floor. The bill received a meager 30 votes, though it needs 41 to pass.

    Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez, a close friend of Villaraigosa and author of the bill, hustled off the floor with orders to staff to get a vote count and see who he could get the votes from to pass the bill.

    No Republican voted for the measure. Assemblywoman Jackie Goldberg, D-Los Angeles, the chair of the education committee declined to vote as she is running for superintendent and saw an "ethical issue" with casting a vote either way.

    Among those Democrats voting no: Joe Canciamilla, long-time adversary of Nunez within the Dem caucus, Merv Dymally, who voiced his opposition in the Times earlier this week, Barbara Matthews, a mod from the Central Valley, Jenny Oropeza, a Long Beach legislator and Lois Wolk, who represents Davis.

    More than a dozen members layed off the vote altogether.

    Pombo challenger gets new spokesman

    Hank Shaw blogs the story of how Democratic challenger Jerry McNerney has replaced his old spokesman, who recorded a remarkable .244 on a Breathalyzer, with the former spokesman for Paul N. "Pete" McCloskey, who challenged Rep. Richard Pombo in the GOP primary.

    Mayor in town

    LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is in Sacramento today and ready to host a presser if (but most likely when) AB 1381, his mayoral takeover bill, passes out of the Assembly.

    Reinke picked to replace Crane

    Yesterday Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed Peter Reinke, an Oakland teacher, to the state teachers retirement board, replacing close adviser David Crane, who was ousted by Senate Democrats earlier this year.

    The Bee has more.

    Monday, August 28, 2006

    No wine for you

    Sen. Carole Migden, D-San Francisco, had guided a bill through the Legislature to designate Zinfandel the "historic wine" of California. But on Monday, the legislation meet with the business end of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's veto pen.

    According to the legislation:

    (a) Zinfandel wine arrived in California at the time of the Gold Rush. Zinfandel quickly became a favorite drink of the Gold Rush miners and has consistently been one of the most popular selling varietals. The only place in the world to find "Old Vine" zinfandel is in California.

    (b) Zinfandel's popularity and consistently strong sales have elevated the popularity of previously unknown, but identical local wines in Italy and Croatia. Zinfandel has a wide variety of flavors that complement the culinary and cultural diversity of California. Zinfandels have consistently performed well at national and international wine judging competitions.

    (c) Zinfandel's cultural and historical contribution to California and its importance to California's wine industry make it worthy of recognition as California's historic wine.

    But Schwarzenegger did not agree.

    Here's some of what he had to say:

    To name only one of the many of the varietals produced in California as the historic wine fails to recognize the many world class varietals produced in the State. With California’s unique micro climates, diverse geography, outstanding soils, and industrious growers, farmworkers and vintners who have mastered the delicate art of winemaking perfectly balancing art with science, it would be a shame to recognize only one as “California’s Historic Wine.” Whether it is a Cabernet from Napa or Sonoma, a delicate Pinot Noir from the Central Coast, a Zinfandel from the San Joaquin Valley or Sierra Foothills, California produces some of the finest wines in the world. California wines have inspired authors, artists, and Oscar winning motion pictures.

    The biggest irony: Midgen doesn't drink.

    Mulholland leaves Angelides camp

    The Chron has the story.

    Ducheny to chair budget committee

    As the Legislature rifles through hundreds of bills this week, many legislators and soon-to-be legislators are jockeying for good gigs in next year's session, particularly powerful committee chairmanships.

    Well, it looks like one of the most plum assignments has already been locked up.

    The Riverside PE is reporting that Sen. Denise Moreno Ducheny, D-San Diego, will be the next chair of the Senate Budget Committee.

    GOP takes on Garamendi

    Today, the California Republican Party released an attack ad against Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi, who is the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor.

    The ad will be up on the GOP site at 11:30, but for now here's the script:

    We lost our home...and our handicapped daughter almost lost her medical care...because of John Garamendi. As Insurance Commissioner, Garamendi sold our insurance company to a junk bond king and foreign bank. They made billions while elderly and handicapped policyholders were financially devastated. Garamendi accepted contributions from lawyers who profited from the deal...and even took a $100,000 job from the lead investors partner. John Garamendi didn't protect us, how can you trust him to protect you.

    Depending on how large the buy is, this ad is likely to please the Republican base, as Sen. Tom McClintock is running against Garamendi and is a favorite of California's conservatives.

    Friday, August 25, 2006

    BREAKING: Perata gets $500,000 from builders, scuttles builder-opposed bills

    This week, just as Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata put on hold an eight-bill package of flood-protection legislation, one of his political committees received a $500,000 donation from the California Building Industry Association (CBIA), one of the package's biggest opponents.

    The donation is the single largest that a Perata committee has received since he became Senate leader in 2004.

    On the same day, the builders donated another $500,000 to Let's Rebuild California, a campaign committee that is not controlled by Perata but employs top Perata confidant Sandra Polka as the chief strategist.

    Paul Hefner, a Polka associate and spokesman for both committees, denied that there was any connection between the donations and Perata's decision to scuttle the flood-protection package.

    "The senator makes his decisions about legislation on the merits and nothing else," said Hefner "It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why the Building Industry Association would be in favor of an infrastructure plan that calls for building roads, building schools, building homes and building levees."

    Find the rest of the story here.

    Good deals or not such good deals

    Both today and yesterday, there have been stories (see here and here) about Gov. Schwarzenegger cutting deals with Dems and undercutting Democratic challenger Phil Angelides.

    This is what Jordan Rau in the LA Times wrote yesterday:

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's agreements this week on a minimum-wage hike and prescription drug discounts solidifies an election-year transformation that robs his Democratic opponent, Phil Angelides, of coveted middle-class issues.

    Since voters rejected his largely conservative special election platform last November, Schwarzenegger has methodically shed all links to his calamitous second year in office.

    He replaced his strategists with a team imported from two distant lands: a campaign manager from Washington, D.C., and a chief of staff from the Democratic Party.

    He showed that he had absorbed the lesson of the special election — that lawmakers, not the electorate, should be responsible for governing — by striking a $116-billion public works deal with legislators.

    Well, Steve Maviglio, staffer to one of the Dems, Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez, says that conventional wisdom just isn't so.

    These deals might actually help Angelides–if he plays them right.

    How? Let me explain (with the full disclosure that Assembly Speaker Nunez, architect of both of the deals, is my boss).

    It’s no secret that the Angelides campaign gets traction when it has attacks the Governor’s broken promises and flip-flops. Just over a month ago, Angelides began picking up where last year’s Alliance for Better California campaign left off, hitting Schwarzenegger with more pointed versions of last year’s Alliance tagline: "He’s not the Governor he said he’d be."

    Angelides painted the Governor as a political chameleon who is simply changing stripes in an election year. That won praise from Democrats, who look cautiously at Schwarzenegger's move to the center. And it resonated with those on the Republican right who are equally concerned about the Schwarzenegger's swift departure from the hard-core conservative positions he embraced during the first two years of his governorship

    Find the rest of Maviglio's hopeful piece here.

    Prop. 90 endorses

    The Yes on 90 eminent domain measure are circulating their list of legislative endorsees, which total some 42 legislators.

    Here's the list of GOP senators: Sam Aanestad, Roy Ashburn, Jim Battin, Dave Cox, Jeff Denham, Bob Dutton, Tom Harman, Dennis Hollingsworth, George Runner, Abel Maldonado, Bob Margett, Tom McClintock, and Bill Morrow.

    Who's missing?

    Only Senate Republican leader Dick Ackerman.

    Thursday, August 24, 2006

    Is the California Majority Report a blog?

    That's the question Calitics creator Brian takes on in a long post today. It is worth a read, especially when one tries to consider what is and is not a progressive blog.

    Here's some highlights:

    What could help this site become a blog? Well, there are many ways to go, some of which directly contradict others. First, exercise more editorial control. Who's site is this? Is it Salazar's? Maviglio's? Or is it their hired hand's site? I don't know, as it's hard to tell from a reading of the site. The lack of editorial control leads to a lack of editorial direction. I don't know if this site is supposed to be helping Democrats get elected or if it's just supposed to be an entertainment site, something like a defamer for Sacto pols.

    The other suggestion I would give is to reach out to the grassroots and netroots. With the exception of a few limited contact, the founders of this site made little effort to market this to what I expect is their target audience. Oh sure, they did a great job if they were going to start up a rival to the Capitol Weekly, what with the press availability and the fancy insider party. But if you want Internet readers, perhaps you should attempt to have an Internet outreach and Internet campaign to publicize the site (maybe even the most basic step of a blogroll so that you participate in the liberal blogosphere's link economy).

    Incidentally, Brian, I don't see a link my blog on your blogroll. But I digress...

    He continues:

    Not to be unpleasant, but when political professionals fail to reach out to the single constituency that they say they're trying to reach, it causes one to doubt their skill set generally. Especially when the people that make up that constituency are among the easiest people on the planet to find and contact. At any rate, that didn't happen and they elected to use only traditional media for their launch campaign. Oh, and Fleischman. So, CA Majority Report, get to work on doing some serious connecting with the 'roots.

    So, back to my original question. What is a progressive blog? Well, this certainly is far from progressive, and it could use some help on the blog side too. Perhaps it could benefit from a few less voices, especially some of the voices that have proven to be toxic to the Democratic Party. But, I'll reserve judgment before heaping scorn upon the actual concept. It needs some work, but perhaps it could become a resource.

    A few good links

    After quite a few months, I have finally added a host of new links to the section on the right of this page.

    First up are two blogs from political reporters. Lisa Vorderbrueggen at the Contra Costa Times doesn't work in Sacramento, but she covers state and local politics from Contra Costa. Her blog is here

    Second up is the Stockton Record's Hank Shaw, who updates his Central Valley blog pretty regularly with state political stories with a local bent.

    On the more ideological front, the "netroots" Dems behind the Governor Phil are linked to, as is the new California Majority Report site. There's a spot for the offical blog of the Schwarzenegger campaign, as well.

    Of William Burke and term limits

    John Howard at Capitol Weekly has a follow-up story on the Legislature's efforts to extend the term limits for William Burke, chair of the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

    McPherson weighs in on redistricting

    Secretary of State Bruce McPherson has sent a letter off to Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez and Assembly Republican leader George Plescia urging them to still place redistricting reform on the ballot--in 2008.

    Redistricting is an issue of vital importance that can and should be dealt with before the end of this year’s legislative session. Although the window to place a redistricting measure on November’s ballot has passed, I urge you to redouble your efforts before the end of session to craft a redistricting measure that we can put before the voters in 2008.

    It is not too late to address this very important issue.

    You can find the full letter here.

    Skelton on taxes

    LA Times columnist George Skelton takes the Schwarzenegger campaign to task today in a column about taxes in the governor's race.

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger must be misinformed about his reelection opponent's tax proposals. Because if he weren't, he'd be flat-out fibbing.

    That's the gentle way of putting it.

    Those are pretty strong words and Skelton doesn't let up. But at the end he writes:

    Finally, readers who think this column favors Angelides and sticks it to Schwarzenegger should think again. Almost any discussion of a tax increase — whatever size — tends to help the governor and hurt his tax-crusading challenger.

    New in CW 08.24.06

    Candidates priced out of ballot pamphlets

    With its big cities, the skyrocketing costs of television advertisements and the impracticality of campaigning door-to-door, running for statewide office in California has long been an expensive endeavor.

    But this year, for the first time, down-ticket campaigns are getting slapped with one more small expense: Candidates for statewide office must now pay for their ballot statements--at the rate of $20 per word--in the state's official voter guide.

    Some activists and candidates are saying the new fee prices them out of what was once their best shot at communicating with a statewide audience.

    "Democracy shouldn't have a price tag. Why don't we start charging voters for the cost of voting in elections?" says a sarcastic Larry Cafiero, the Green Party candidate for insurance commissioner. "I am very dismayed that the state thinks they have to charge candidates for this because it doesn't provide a level playing field, especially for third-party candidates."

    Wednesday, August 23, 2006

    Fun with 89

    You gotta hand it to the proponents of Proposition 89, the public financing of campaigns initiative: They are having a good time.

    First, there was the "Dash for Cash" last week where the Foundation for Taxpayers and Consumer Rights had folks try to crash fund-raisers.

    Then there is the Batman thing.

    And today there is a 89 cent Krispy Kreme sale outside a $1500 fund-raiser for Assemblyman Rick Keene.

    The tagline: "Doughnut Sale Outside $1,500 Fundraiser 89 cent Krispy Kremes--a $1,499.11 savings"

    Majority Report launched

    The Democrat-backed California Majority Report webpage launched today after a party in Sacramento last night.

    One of the pages worth a click is the summary of all the races in the state.

    Tuesday, August 22, 2006

    Popular vote on popular vote

    A bill by Assemblyman Tom Umberg cleared the Senate today which would provide all of California's electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote.

    According to Umberg's office:

    Assembly Bill 2948 ratifies an interstate compact whereby the State of California agrees to award its electoral votes not to the Presidential ticket who receives the most votes in California, but rather to the ticket that receives the most popular votes nationwide. However, the compact only goes into effect when states collectively possessing a majority of electoral votes also join the compact. California is the first state where both legislative houses have approved the compact.

    Habla Espanol

    Team Schwarzenegger has released the first spanish-language ad of the governor's race today. Here's the script (with the translation in parenthesis).

    ¡Con el Gobernador Schwarzenegger… Avanzamos!
    (With Governor Schwarzenegger... we're moving forward!)

    En California hemos invertido 3 mil millones de dólares en la educación de nuestros hijos...
    (In California , we've invested 3 billion dollars in the education of our children....)


    Hemos creado medio millón de nuevos empleos...
    (We've created half a million new jobs...)


    Hemos reducido el impuesto a los automóviles…
    (We've reduced the automobile tax)


    Incrementado los esfuerzos para proteger a nuestras familias del crimen y pandillas.
    (And increased efforts to protect our families from crime and gangs)


    Porque el Gobernador Schwarzenegger está protegiendo el sueño Californiano para todas nuestras familias.
    (Because Governor Schwarzenegger is protecting the California dream for all our families.)

    First splinter site

    The campaign for the infrastructure bond package continues to take a back seat to many of the hot-button initiatives and the governor's race in November.

    But things are still astirring behind the scenes. Today, the transportation folks launched a transportation-only Web page, advocating for 1A and 1B, as opposed to the umbrella site for all the bonds.

    Gov. drops out of CCPOA endorsement process

    Andy Furillo has the story.

    Monday, August 21, 2006

    8 outta 9

    Gov. Schwarzenegger signed eight measures into law today and vetoed one, SB 1765 by Sen. Martha Escutia, that would create a reparations fund of sorts for those displaced Mexican-Americans from California between 1929 and 1944.

    Here's part of the veto message.

    I am sympathetic to citizens and legal residents of the United States who were impacted by the repatriation efforts within California between 1929 and 1944. A great injustice was done to many. However, broadly drafted legislation that allows private litigation of potentially thousands of claims against the state, local governments, and private citizens is not the answer.

    It is only his second veto of the year (by my count).

    Agua Caliente compact fails on first vote

    Update: The compact ultimately passed with 22 votes.

    The recently negotiated compact to add thousands of new slot machines to the Agua Caliente tribe's casinoes was rejected in an initial vote in the state Senate moments ago in a 18-7 vote. The measure is now on call.

    Here's who voted no: Chesbro, Kuehl, Migden, Romero, Scott, Speier, and Ortiz.

    Minimum wage deal

    The scuttlebutt around the Capitol is that the governor and Legislature are moving closer to a minimum wage deal--without indexing.

    Going Green

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's reelection team continues to press for pro-environment voters, today sending out a Monday-morning missive about Phil Angelides lack of leadership on solar power:

    "If Phil Angelides claims to be a champion of the environment, then why wasn't he a supporter of the nation's most ambitious solar energy project?" said spokesman Matt David in a statement.

    They go on to cite a couple of Steve Westly statements from the primary.

    Arriving 2 minutes before 9am on Monday, the campaign looks like they want to go on offense after the Republican convention and a week in which Phil Angelides proposed a tax cut.

    Meanwhile, Angelides is hosting an event early this afternoon across town to tout the new savings he promises to small businesses.

    Friday, August 18, 2006

    Gov. names 2 new UC regents

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced the addition of two new UC Regents today, William C. De La Pena and Bruce Varner, both Republicans.

    De La Pena is an ophthalmologist who has held numerous posts in the medical world. In 2002, he was appointed by Pres. Bush to be a Member of the Board of Regents of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences for a term expiring June 20, 2007.

    Varner, according to the release, 'has been a partner with the law firm Varner & Brandt since 1997, where he specializes in corporate and business law" and currently "serves on the University Advisory Board for California State University, San Bernardino and on the Board of Trustees for the University of California, Riverside Foundation."

    The AG's race and abortion

    The issue of abortion is heating up in the race for attorney general in a series of press-releases fired off between the campaigns of Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown and Sen. Chuck Poochigian, R-Fresno.

    Little of the debate has made it past reporter's inboxes, but in down-ticket races, where candidates and campaigns try to settle on only one or two themes, the back-and-forth is likely instructive of where the debate is heading this fall.

    The first release came from Camp Poochigian on June 26, when the campaign sent out an opinion piece by John Gizzi, in which he wrote:

    Brown's penchant for flip-flopping is legendary. After spending time with Mother Teresa in the 1980s, he proclaimed that "the killing of the unborn is crazy" and wrote a letter seeking parole for an anti-abortion activist in prison after more than 130 arrests. But when he was running for state Democratic chairman in 1981, and came under fire from pro-abortion activists, he declared himself in favor of abortion.

    On August 3, Brown's campaign sent out that they were endorsed by Planned Parenthood. They included the following quote from Kathy Kneer, president of Planned Parenthood:

    “We support Jerry Brown for Attorney General because he will defend a woman’s right to choose in the face of challenges from extremists who are determined to overturn Roe v. Wade and return to the days of back alley abortions.”

    “Unfortunately, it is clear that State Senator Chuck Poochigian cannot be trusted to uphold California law, including the Reproductive Privacy Act. Poochigian is so extreme that he wants to outlaw abortion for women who are the victims of rape or incest. He is truly out of touch with California voters. This is a pro-choice state where Californians consistently and overwhelmingly support upholding Roe v. Wade.”

    That was followed by a missive from Brown campaign chief Ace Smith:

    As Chuck trumpets such obvious endorsements as his Republican legislative colleagues on his website – there is one great omission. There is never a mention that he has been enthusiastically endorsed by the California Pro-Life Council – a group which loves him because Poochigian is in favor of outlawing abortion even in cases of rape and incest and because he is a staunch opponent of stem cell research.

    Those comments didn't go over too well with Camp Poochigian, whose strategist Ken Kachigian responded

    Mayor Jerry Brown's handlers recently flunked their abortion homework on two scores. First, with a false and malicious claim regarding the Senator's personal views and, second, by covering up the mayor's own hypocritically contortionist position.

    Fact: Brown referenced a website questionnaire that Senator Poochigiannever completed in order to make his false claim. The website's organizers have been asked to remove any suggestions that Senator Poochigian "answered" a questionnaire that he never filled out and have acknowledged the same.

    Fact: Senator Poochigian does not oppose abortion in the case of rape and incest. Period. To the contrary, he has always expressed great sympathy for the victims of these heartless crimes. In fact, Senator Poochigian co-authored the 2005 law that reversed a measure Jerry Brown signed in 1980 that had for nearly 25 years allowed child molesters who target their own family members to avoid consequences for their actions by pleading down to an incest charge. Senator Poochigian is also a co-chair of the "Jessica's Law" campaign, and has been an ardent supporter of strengthening California's laws on rapists and other sexual predators.

    Team Brown followed with another statement from Kathy Kneer, "Poochigian needs to acknowledge his extreme anti-choice position."

    I'm guessing that won't be the end of the debate, though it is probably not the issue Poochigian would most like to focus on. Rather, the recent increase in crime this year is Oakland is what they are trying to highlight, including in some web-only videos.

    Remember, it is still only August.

    Boxer weighs in

    U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer has endorsed the entire infrastructure plan negotiated between Gov. Schwarzenegger and the Legislature, including Propositions 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, and 1E.

    Thursday, August 17, 2006

    Hanretty on Phil's smarts

    GOP strategist Karen Hanretty has a long and funny post making fun of Democratic gubernatorial challeneger Phil Angelides being intelligent.

    Here's how it starts:

    Picture this: You’re the smartest guy in California, and you’re running for governor. You went to Harvard, so you must be smart. Certainly a lot smarter than your opponent, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who went to community college and got his degree from a college that you’ve never heard of.

    You try not to brag too much about your Harvard education because, after all, you’re the champion of the little guy. The middle class. The working stiff who isn’t smart enough to get into Harvard. But you were. Because you’re the smartest guy in California.

    New feature in CW

    Ok...last of my new stuff for the is a new feature we will have every week in CW on the latest in political donations:

    One week after inking a deal with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to add 3,000 new slot machines to their casino, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians flexed their political muscle this week with either $1,000 or $2,000 donations to five sitting Assembly members, including Mimi Walters, R-Laguna Niguel, Joe Coto, D-San Jose, Juan Arambula, D-Fresno, Lori Saldana, D-San Diego, and Shirley Horton, R-Chula Vista, as well as six would-be Assembly members: Tom Berryhill, Fiona Ma, Mike Duvall, Anna Caballero, Jean Fuller and Jose Solorio. … As the Legislature considers major environmental legislation in the final weeks of session, Sempra energy has donated to a several Republicans, including Assembly members Horton, ($1,000), Greg Aghazarian, R-Stockton ($1,000), Guy Houston, R-Livermore, Mark Wyland, R-Del Mar ($1,250), Dave Cogdill, R-Modesto ($1,500), and Mod Squad Dems Arambula ($1,000) and Coto ($1,000). Sempra also tossed $1,000 to Assembly hopefuls Paul Krekorian and Caballero. … Speaking of oil companies, the Plains Exploration & Production Company chipped in $600,000 to defeat Proposition 87, the oil-tax initiative, which makes them the biggest contributor of the week. The company Web site describes them as "an independent oil and gas company primarily engaged in the upstream activities of acquiring, developing, exploiting, exploring and producing oil." Wait a second, did they say exploiting? … Coming in second place are the Operating Engineers Local Union No. 3, which gave $250,000 to Californians to Improve Traffic Now, a committee dedicated to passing Prop. 1B, the transportation bond. … Another big donor was the National Audubon Society, which gave $100,000 to help support Proposition 84, the environmental bond. … Meanwhile the California Nurses Association contributed more than $24,000 to support Proposition 89, to stop all these donations … and former Senate leader John Burton donated $1,000 to Phil Angelides.

    New in CW 08.17.06

    Schwarzenegger, Núñez square off over transportation commission

    An unexpected partisan battle erupted this week over whether or not a deal was struck between Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez to place two new legislative appointees on the influential California Transportation Commission (CTC).

    The debate devolved into a he-said, she-said spat on the Assembly floor Tuesday as the floor manager for the bill, Assemblyman Pedro Nava, D-Santa Barbara, said the legislation was part of the bond deal negotiated between Schwarzenegger and Núñez, while former Assembly Republican leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield, said it was not part of any deal he knew about.

    Núñez insisted there was a deal, while the governor's office said that there wasn't.

    Mental-health fund rakes in unexpected $890 million

    Mental-health services in California are poised to receive an unexpected windfall--on the order of hundreds of millions of dollars--as a new fund dedicated to serving the mentally ill is flush with cash, raising $890 million above estimates in the last two years.

    The new money, which is a whooping 57 percent above original projections, comes from Proposition 63, approved by voters in 2004. The measure levied a 1 percent tax hike for those making more than $1 million in order to expand services for mentally ill seniors, children and homeless.

    Vote for me and 83

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and former New York Mayor Rudy Guliani join up today in a Santa Monica event to ask voters to support Proposition 83, better known as Jessica's Law, which would impose stiffer sentences on sex offenders and strict restrictions on where they could live.

    Wednesday, August 16, 2006

    Fun with Fund-raising

    Seeing as today is the busiest day of the month (and probably the year) for political fund-raisers, so groups are rabble rousing around town.

    The best is the folks from the Foundation for Taxpayer for Consumer Rights which has a blog for the Yes on 89 clean money campaign.

    They made a movie where they asked lobbyists attending events what they got for their $1500.

    Sen. Jack Scott and Sen. Kevin Murray make cameo appearances.

    Leno and McClintock together again?

    Senate leader Don Perata saw the floor jockey and pronounced that it must be some kind of "joke."

    Sen. Tom McClintock, one of the conservative warriors of the Legislature, was the spokesman for a bill authored by Assemblyman Mark Leno, a gay San Francisco Democrat and one of the biggest targets of legislative Republican ire.

    What brought these two men together?


    Leno, along with Assemblyman Chuck Devore, R-Irvine, authored the bill to define industrial hemp as a non-pyschoactive agricultural product. The bill passed off the floor 26-13 and now heads to the Assembly for concurrence before landing on the governor's desk.

    Leno's office notes that "Industrial hemp has less than 0.3% THC and has no psychoactive effects while marijuana contains 5 to 15% THC."

    One light moment in the debate came when Sen. Dennis Hollingsworth, a Republican, asked why, if this were an agricultural bill, all the letters his office received were from San Francisco.

    Sen. Dean Florez, who represents Fresno and other Central Valley farming areas, opposed the bill.

    About those gas prices...

    The California energy commission has release its report on why gas prices spiked this spring. You can find the full report here.

    Here's the key findings:

    • Wholesale prices in California increased rapidly for a 3-week period. Retail prices have remained high for over three months when compared to prices at the same time last year.

    • This retail price spike cost California consumers over $1.3 billion more for gasoline and $170 million more for diesel from May 1 through July 31, after making adjustments for the differences in the cost of crude oil and increased sales taxes from the higher crude oil costs.

    o Refineries experienced significantly more unplanned outage days in the first six months of 2006 than there were during the first six months of 2005 (175 vs. 58) and the average unplanned outage lasted almost twice as long in the first six months of 2006 compared to the same time in 2005. In turn this contributed to three consecutive weeks of lower-than-normal gasoline production in California appears to have been a factor that contributed to the formation and magnitude of the April/May price spike for gasoline. Gasoline production in California was lower during this period than it had been in the 5 previous years because.

    o Because California is becoming more dependent on imports, increased congestion at California marine ports in late April resulted in delays in petroleum product delivery.

    o Pipeline exports of gasoline from California to Nevada and Arizona were at their highest level over the 5 previous years, while pipeline imports to western states from Texas were lower than they had been for the 5 previous years.

    o Alkylate is a key gasoline blending component for refiners. The transition away from MTBE in many other states increased the demand, and therefore the price, for alkylate. The price increased by about 75 cents per gallon since early April.

    Tuesday, August 15, 2006

    My flooded inbox

    Excuse me, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's state press office, but you are filing up my e-mail inbox.

    So far today, the governor's press shop has fired off 11 12 e-mail press releases and advisories on an array of topics. The first one arrived at 9:44 am, a statement by the governor on the release of standarized test scores across the state. The second, which arrived at 11:11 am, was an update on his schedule.

    The 1 hour and 27 minutes between those e-mails is the longest time there's been today between missives.

    Pool information about his sex offender task force followed within the hour.

    Then Schwarzenegger sent a letter to President Bush asking for him to change his mind about ending production of the Boeing C-17 airplane, which apparently is produced in Long Beach.

    Then came three e-mails within 10 minutes, two offering condolences for the deaths of two soldiers and a third with the details of the earlier mentioned sex offender task force.

    Then, at 3:36 four e-mails arrived within 5 minutes, including a comment on the now-dead redistricting deal, a statement on a newly released energy commission report, a letter from Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi and Schwarzenegger to legislative leadership, and then finally a pool report on the sex offender task force.


    Of course, there is an e-mail from his campaign as well, highlighting a Santa Barbara TV segment on Phil Angelides and taxes, though only from the campaign is a particularly light day.

    No Deal

    Early Tuesday afternoon, the four legislative leaders released a statement announcing that they will not pursue changes to California's redistricting process or system of term limits this year.

    In a joint statement from Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez, Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata, Senate Republican leader Dick Ackerman and Assembly Republican leader George Plescia, the leaders said "There is no question about the need to reform...but given the tremendous impact any proposal crafted by the Legislature this year could have on politics and policymaking in our state, we feel it is the best course not to pursue a sweeping reform package in the waning hours of the legislative session."

    The Legislature had faced a Friday deadline to place a potential measure on the November ballot.

    The decision to scrap the effort comes after the leaders created a special conference committee this month to consider redistricting and term-limits reform. Private polling circulated around the Capitol in recent months has shown that any ballot measure that combined the two reforms would face an uphill battle with the state's voters. Last week, the president of U.S. Term Limits, Paul Jacob, came to Sacramento and threatened that if the Legislature tried to toy with term limits, his organization would fund a retaliatory measure stripping legislators of their tax-free $153 per diem.

    The four leaders reiterated in their statement that they are committed to pursuing similar reforms in the future.

    "Make no mistake, our caution in crafting a reform package this year does not in any way diminish our determination to fix a broken system. We stand committed to revisiting redistricting and term limits reform in the next legislative session – to once and for all craft responsible, bipartisan political reforms for the people of California," they said.

    It is unclear how the joint decision impacts the Democratic leadership's pledge last year to take up redistricting and place it on the ballot. Update: Perata's office says that the redistricting bill by Sen. Alan Lowenthal will still be taken up on the floor of the Senate and that redistricting is not dead, but the effort to combine term limits and redistricting is. Also unclear is how the Legislature, whose membership will change by some 30 percent next year, would tackle the complex task in a new session with so many new members.

    UC Merced

    The lastest addition to the UC system is struggling in a sophomore slump, trying to attract new students to the new campus. This morning the Select Committee on the Development of a 10th UC, Merced Campus meets this morning to discuss the campus' first year in operation.

    That's the ticket

    The Democrats running for statewide office gather this morning at the Sheraton and will host a press conference at 11am.

    They'll all be there except Jerry Brown, who is running for Attorney General, including the two Board of Equalization candidates Judy Chu and Betty Yee.

    Monday, August 14, 2006

    Revenues up

    The Dept. of Finance is reporting that July revenues are $424 million above forecast but notes that the timing of sales-tax payments may have contributed to the overall jump above projections.

    PPIC on prisons

    As the Legislature and governor debate what to do about California's prison system (seemingly Democrats and Republicans can only agree that its broken), it seems like a good idea to see what the PPIC says about Who's in Prison?

    Here's the start of the summary:

    For issues of crime and punishment, California has experienced a dynamic period over the past 15 years. Voters and legislators have chosen to impose harsher criminal penalties but also to experiment with alternatives to incarceration. The federal courts have taken management of the entire prison health care system away from the state itself; they have also ruled that California’s racial segregation policy in prisons is unconstitutional. And as a larger number of Californians are confined to prison, concern has mounted about the effects of incarceration policies on all Californians, in particular on the families and communities that prisoners leave behind and to whom many eventually return.

    The state prison population has grown three times faster than the general adult population since 1990 and at year-end 2005 stood at 167,698. African Americans have the highest incarceration rates of any group (5,125 per 100,000 adults in the population for men and 346 per 100,000 for women, compared to 1,159 and 62, respectively, for all adults), although Latinos now constitute the largest ethnic group in the prison system, at 38 percent of the total.

    The prison population is aging, with adults under age 25 representing a steadily declining share while the number of prisoners in older age groups continues to grow. Currently, the share of prisoners age 50 and older is 11 percent, up from 4 percent in 1990, whereas the share of prisoners under age 25 has declined from 20 percent to 14 percent.

    The full report is worth a read.

    Belated birthday

    The Yes on 87 campaign, pushing for an oil tax to fund alternative energy, is celebrating the birthday of Lee Raymond, CEO of Exxon Mobil, on its Web page.

    It’s always tough to find the perfect birthday gift for someone – especially when that someone made $400 million just last year.

    When it comes to you, Lee Raymond, we could spend months arguing about what the perfect gift would be. But since your birthday is today, and we haven’t bothered to go to the mall, this message will have to do. And Lee, we not only want to wish you a Happy Birthday – we want to thank you for all you’ve done for us.

    Lee, thanks for putting it all into perspective.

    His birthday was yesterday, but I saw the note this morning. Also of note for the Yes on 87 crew is that they have purchased the domain Talk about cyber-squatting.

    Bad news day

    Today doesn't look so good for Phil Angelides in the papers, as Jon Fleischman notes on his site.

    FR friend Steve Maviglio, who had been handling some press duties for Phil Angelides during the legislative break, is back at work for Speaker Nunez these days. But I am sure as he is looking at press coverage of the Gubernatorial race today, he is rolling his eyes. Since he is in Sacramento, he has to read a buzz column that starts out with a story about how basketball legend Magic Johnson was a no-show for an Angelides fundraiser. But that is only the beginning of bad-press Monday for the ersatz Governor Angelides... You have a major story in the Los Angeles Times dumping on Angelides for a lack of charisma, the Contra Costa Times wondering if Angelides will gain any traction, and then Bill Bradley on his New West Notes website throws dirt into the political grave of Angelides, highlighting that the only way he gets press is by talking about whatever the Governor is talking about, in the hopes of getting a down-story quote. And it's only Monday, Phil!

    Saturday, August 12, 2006

    A taxing address

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger gave his weekly radio address this week and the topic dovetails well with his reelection: Not raising taxes.

    Here's the start:

    Hi, this is Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger with another California Report. Today, I want to talk to you about taxes and why my administration will not raise them. When I took office almost three years ago our state's finances were a disaster. We had a $22 billion debt and a $16.5 billion structural deficit. There were some politicians that said that the only way we get out of our financial crisis was to raise taxes. But, higher taxes was not what California needed.

    Friday, August 11, 2006

    Dean in CA

    Democratic National Committeen Chairman Howard Dean hosts an event in San Francisco today with Phil Angelides in San Francisco along with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom to try to rally support for Angelides' candidacy.

    But today, Chronicle reporter Tom Chorneau asks if it is too little, too late.

    The appearance of former President Bill Clinton at a fundraising event last week for state Treasurer Phil Angelides was supposed to help refill the coffers of the Democratic candidate for governor and unite the party behind him after a tough primary.

    But a close look at campaign statements filed since suggests Angelides may have problems that even a visit from a rainmaker like Clinton cannot fix.

    Organizers said the Clinton speech would generate $5 million for Angelides and the state party for the campaign to unseat Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

    So far, Angelides has reported contributions of less than $900,000 between July 25 and Thursday, from all his fundraising activities during that two-week period. Detailed contribution reports from the party are not due until Oct. 5.

    New in CW 08.11.06

    Prison guard talks break down--no contract likely until 2007

    It has been more than a month since the labor contract between California and the state's prison guards expired and the union now says it is digging in and preparing to go without a contract until at least 2007. Discussions have stalled as negotiators face a deadline--which could be as soon as today--to hammer out a deal and have it ratified by the Legislature before the end of the year.

    The negotiating teams have not met for more than a week after a late July session when tempers flared and both sides walked away displeased. The state and union have yet even to agree on ground rules for the discussions, which began inauspiciously two months ago when the union demanded to videotape the proceedings. In response, the state negotiators walked out.

    "We are at a complete and total standstill. The last official meeting was at least a week ago and it did not go well," said Lance Corcoran, a spokesman for the California Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA). "The CCPOA doesn't have any confidence that a deal can be struck this year."

    Thursday, August 10, 2006

    New pro-Phil blog

    A coaltion of lefty bloggers from a series of Web sites have teamed up to create a new pro-Phil Angelides blog at http://www,

    The contributors include Brian Leubitz of, Frank Russo of , Dan Ancona of and Jenifer Fernandez Ancona of

    Here's what they say in a release:

    We hope to be as effective as other netroots-powered sites across the country, such as Lamont Blog in Connecticut and Raising Kaine in Virginia.

    We'll see.

    Legislature approves college free speech

    The Senate approved a bill today by Assemblyman Leland Yee to protect the freedom of speech for college newspapers. AB 2581, wich passed out of the Senate 31-2 now goes to Gov. Schwarzenegger for a signature.

    California would become the first state to specifically prohibit censorship of college student newspapers. The bill came about after a U.S. Circuit Court ruled that administrators could require that newspapers submit articles for review.

    Here's the statement from Yee:

    “College journalists deserve the same protections as any other journalist,” said Speaker pro Tem Yee. “Having true freedom of the press is essential on college campuses and it is a fundamental part of a young journalists training for real world reporting. Allowing a school administration to censor is contrary to the democratic process and the ability of a student newspaper to serve as the watchdog and bring sunshine to the actions of school administrators.”

    More support for LAUSD takeover

    The Times reports that two city council panel have endorsed the mayor's plan.

    New in CW 08.10.06

    Legislators tap Sacramento interests for campaign cash

    State lawmakers returned to the Capitol this week to finish off the legislative year, but legislating isn't the only task they'll be up to in August. For just about everybody, it's time to renew a classic Sacramento pastime: raising big-time campaign cash.

    This month, there are more than 100 fund-raisers scheduled for almost every would-be and current lawmaker in the state, according to invitations obtained by Capitol Weekly.

    "Sometimes there are 15 of these in a day," complains one veteran lobbyist, who notes that the glut of events is nothing new. "For the month of August, we don't see our family and, for some, access to a private life is suspended. Under the current system, they have to ask, and we have to contribute."

    The rush of events coincides--not coincidentally--with a three-week sprint in which the Legislature will decide of the fate of more than 1,500 bills, from building new prisons to curbing greenhouse-gas emissions.

    With few hot races, Nickel looks for infusion of party cash

    Meet Wiley Nickel. Last year, his family donated $250 to his political rival. His former boss recently resigned amid state investigations. And his television ads in the primary were pilloried by ad watchers as the worst of the year.

    But despite his campaign's inauspicious beginning, Nickel may be California Democrats' best chance to pick up a seat in the state Senate. In the world of California's gerrymandered legislative districts, where seven of the 153 legislative races--and only two of the 20 Senate seats--this November are considered even remotely competitive, Nickel looks like a likely recipient of statewide cash--perhaps on the order of millions of dollars.

    "The race is high on the pecking order because it is one of two seats we are going to be concentrating on," says Art Torres, chairman of the California Democratic Party.

    Wednesday, August 09, 2006

    Blue, Red and Purple? No. Pink

    Find out why from Tim Herdt.

    Polka picked for I-Team

    This happened yesterday...but it's still news.

    Don Perata's top political consultant Sandra Polka was named as the head of the campaign to pass the infrastructure bonds in the fall.

    From the release:

    --Larry McCarthy, President of McCarthy Marcus Hennings Ltd., which will produce the campaign’s paid media.

    --John Whitehurst and Mark Mosher of Barnes, Mosher, Whitehurst, Lauter and Partners will focus on statewide Democratic and organizational outreach.

    --Tom Ross, managing partner of Meridian Pacific, will oversee outreach to Republican and business organizations statewide.

    --Public opinion polling and research will be conducted jointly by Moore Methods and Jan van Lohuizen.

    --Deborah Howard will assist in outreach, press and coordinate the campaign’s speaker’s bureau.

    --Paul Hefner of Polka Consulting will oversee campaign press and serve as campaign spokesperson.

    --The campaign will consult with specialists on specific elements of the infrastructure plan, including: Gale Kaufman (schools), Steve Glazer (housing), Mark Watts and D.J. Smith (Transportation/Infrastructure).

    Tuesday, August 08, 2006

    Mel Gibson: Give money to McClintock

    Chronicle reporter/blogger Carla Marinucci scoop:

    Maybe actor Mel Gibson was unloading some of his thoughts about California politics because -- remember the rumor? -- he was considering running for office himself one day. Or maybe he just really bonded with state Sen. Tom McClintock, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor.

    But one thing's clear: the unusually gushy, three-page, single-spaced fundraising letter sent out by the star of "Braveheart," and "Passion of the Christ" to help raise campaign cash for McClintock's effort won't help much now: it could even be a "Lethal Weapon" for the GOP candidate because Gibson, arrested for DUI, is tabloid fodder for making a rash of anti-Semitic comments.

    In the good old days before his current troubles, Gibson's letter shows he appeared eager to get into the political mix, detailing what he believed was wrong with California's government -- and how McClintock would set that straight.

    "When I find that rare politician who will stand his ground for what is right -- no matter what the pressure or consequences -- I take notice," Gibson wrote in last year's fundraising pitch for McClintock obtained by the Chronicle.

    Newsom clears books

    San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom has finally repaid his campaign debt, after the monumental task of raising more than half-a-million dollars in $750 increments.

    The Chronicle has the story.

    The effort also has built Newsom an impressive rolodex of donors.

    Monday, August 07, 2006

    Political hypocrisy

    Earlier today Phil Angelides held an event at the California State Railroad Museum where he denounced Gov. Schwarzenegger pledge during the recall campaign to clean up politics in Sacramento.

    “Three years ago Arnold Schwarzenegger stood here, at the State Railroad Museum and, invoking the name of Hiram Johnson, the reformer who broke the railroad stranglehold on California, promised to bring sweeping political reform to Sacramento,” said Angelides in a release. “But even after last year’s $50 million special election debacle, Governor Schwarzenegger continues to break that promise. As Governor, I will clean up state government and make it work for California’s hard-working families.”

    The Schwarzenegger campaign quickly fired off an e-mail titled "Political Reform Hypocrisy". As per usual, spokesman Matt David is quoted at the top saying, "Phil Angelides will say anything to anyone at any time if he believes it will benefit him politically. The hypocrisy of Angelides proposing political reform shows that his flailing campaign will resort to anything to get attention."

    But later in the e-mail they detail some of the hypocrisy. They even have a Web page devoted to it:

    DOUBLE-DIPPING" HYPOCRISY: Phil Angelides Paid Thousands In Political Consulting Fees To His Staff At Treasurer's Office While They Were Employed By State.

    · Cathy Calfo "Double-Dipping": Angelides Paid His Current Campaign Manager Cathy Calfo For Political Campaign Work While She Was Serving As Chief Deputy Treasurer In 2001.

    · Mike Roth "Double-Dipping": Angelides Paid Mike Roth – Communications Director In Angelides' State Treasurer's Office – For Political Consulting While He Was Employed By State.

    · Nick Papas "Double-Dipping": Angelides Paid Nick Papas – Press Secretary In Angelides' State Treasurer's Office – For Campaign Consulting While He Was Employed By State.

    Wait one second. Hasn't Schwarzenegger paid his top state staffer, chief of staff Susan Kennedy, with campaign funds. Yes, he paid her $25,000 last December. And in April and June this year, the Schwarzenegger campaign made six payments of $7,500 each to Kennedy, totalling $45,000.

    She has also been reimbursed some $3,000 for food and office expenses.

    Last year, Schwarzenegger also paid his chief of staff, Pat Clarey, with campaign funds as well as Rob Stutzman, his stateside communications director.

    Hypocrisy is a strong word. The campaigns should use it carefully.

    BREAKING: Group counters with threat to strip legislative pay as term limits talk heats up

    The following just went up at Capitol Weekly:

    A leading figure in the national term-limits movement arrived in Sacramento Monday to head off the ongoing discussion to alter legislative terms. U.S. Term Limits President Paul Jacob said if the Legislature tries to tweak the current term-limits law, his group will fund an initiative that would eliminate legislators' tax-free, $153-per-day stipend, and force any future legislative pay to be approved by a popular vote.

    "If they mess around with term limits, we will be much more inclined to say we need to go on offense," said Jacob. "The public has made up their mind but we continue to get legislators who ignore the public and decided they are going to do what's best for their careers."

    U.S. Term Limits has spent millions on initiative campaigns across the country for more than a decade. In 2002, when then-Senate President Pro Tem John Burton, D-San Francisco, qualified a term-limits extension for the California ballot, Americans for Limited Terms, a sister organization, poured $1 million to defeat the measure.

    Read the rest here...

    Another tax ad

    The California Republican Party is releasing another Phil Angelides as tax-hiker ad.

    Here's the transcript:

    Governor Schwarzenegger is moving California's economy forward...with no new taxes. Phil Angelides promises $10 billion in new taxes...that would move California's economy backwards. Governor Schwarzenegger's economic plan, no new taxes, and workers' comp reform has led to a vigorous economy, record education funding, and 500,000 new jobs. The Phil Angelides' plan? Higher taxes for California families...Why would we go back?

    In about fifteen minutes you should be able to find the ad here. No word yet on how big the buy is or if they are just searching for earned media.

    End of session advice

    The Legislature returns from recess today and Jon Fleischman has some advice for them: Don't pass any Democratic bills.

    His suggestions are a fun read:

    Let us not forget that when the legislature is dominated by Democrats, and the Governor is posturing to the left on key policy issues, that the GOP team on the field this month is DEFENSE. And the mission of the team: keep the big-government football from crossing into the end zone as best we can.

    Friday, August 04, 2006

    New in CW 08.04.06

    Angelides hones campaign message

    Down in the polls and with less than 100 days until the election, Phil Angelides' campaign for governor has revamped its campaign message. For much of the general election campaign--and even during the primary--Angelides and his advisers worked to tie Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to the President George W. Bush, hoping the latter's dismal approval ratings in the state would drag down the governor's reelection chances.

    But in recent weeks the campaign has rolled out a new theme: Arnold Schwarzenegger as a flip-flopping, convictions-free actor versus Angelides, a "governor you can count on."

    Since July 25, the Angelides campaign and the state Democratic Party have sent out twelve missives blasting Schwarzenegger for "flip-flops", accusing him of changing his positions on Proposition 187, greenhouse gases, fully funding education, not raising money from special interests and the Minutemen. On Thursday, the California Democratic Party unveiled a Web page dedicated solely to tracking Schwarzenegger's "flip-flops and broken promises."

    In the previous seven months of the year, Team Angelides had never once used the term in either a press release or memo to reporters.

    Thursday, August 03, 2006

    Foes of licenses for illegals are "crackers", says Perata

    UPDATE: Perata's office his issued an additional statement. See bottom of post.

    In a wide-ranging press conference before the final three-week sprint of the Legislature, Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata, D-Oakland, today called residents of southern California who are opposing a bill to provide drivers licenses to illegal immigrants "crackers" and said they "do not have the best interest of this democracy at heart".

    "Let’s face it, immigration is a red meat issue. You’ve got all these crackers down in southern California…in San Diego taking on the governor," said Perata, presumably referring to a campaign stop Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger made in La Mesa last week where he was greeted by a hostile crowd. "Even the governor, the governor was shocked, he says he was embarrassed the other day. I agree with him...there is no sense in falling into or getting into a pitched vocal battle with [these] people."

    The room reacted in a mixture of gasps and laughs as Perata's staff looked on stunned at the verbal slip. Perata continued by saying that though he has and will continue to vote to provide licenses to undocumented immigrants, it is not an issue he plans to push this year.

    "I think the bill on its merits should be passed into law. That is different from the political responsibility is to look at all things—including, in an election year, the political climate," said Perata. "I do not want to give undue advantage in an election to people who I believe do not have the best interest of this democracy at heart. And some of those people I intemperately called crackers fall into that category."

    The drivers license bill, SB 1160, which is authored by Sen. Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles, is currently in the Assembly after passing out of the Senate in June along a nearly party-line vote of 23-15.

    The bill passed out of the Assembly transportation committee in June, as well, on a 7-5 vote and currently is before the appropriations committee.

    "If you start getting engaged with these people, you end up getting tar all over yourself," said Perata.

    Update: Here is a statement sent out by Perata's office from Perata:

    Next time I come to Sacramento in August I'll be sure to run the air conditioner. I want to clarify something I said earlier today. While I am concerned about the coarse and divisive tone used by a small minority in the driver's license debate, I believe that the vast majority on both sides are people of good will.

    Angelides backs 89

    It's official: Phil Angelides has endorsed Prop. 89, the public financing of campaigns measure.

    Going Green

    The environment has been a central debate point in the campaign for governor in recent weeks. Angelides has continuously rolled out the "immediate past president" of the Sierra Club. Schwarzenegger has made news with his joint accord with British Prime Minister Tony Blair on greenhouse gases, and his campaign released an online-onlycartoon ad slapping at Angelides record as a developer. The ad features a bulldoozer with the name "Big Business" plastered on the side moving various quotes around.

    So why all the fuss?

    Maybe the latest from the latest from the PPIC is the reason. The July Special Survey on the Environment shows a keen interest in the environment by the electorate (or, more precisely, the general public).

    Here's some of the key findings:

    Eight in 10 residents believe global warming will be a very (49%) or somewhat serious (30%) threat to California’s future economy and quality of life.

    Sixty-five percent of all adults and 70 percent of likely voters favor having the state make its own policies on global warming.

    The proposal to reduce GHG emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 receives majority support from residents across all regions, racial/ethnic, and demographic groups.

    Seventy percent of all adults say they would seriously consider purchasing or leasing a hybrid vehicle, with 57 percent saying they would even if it were more costly.

    Wednesday, August 02, 2006

    Angelides and the Nurses

    Tomorrow, Democratic gubernatorial challenger Phil Angelides is hosting an event with the California Nurses Association. My guess is he comes out for Proposition 89, the Clean Money Initiative.

    The fate of the Props.

    Here's the latest from the Field Poll:

    • Proposition 86, the cigarette tax initiative, starts with an early two to one lead, 63% to 32%.

    • Proposition 87, the alternative energy and oil tax initiative, is currently favored by a five to three margin (52% to 31%).

    • There is even stronger support (76% Yes and 11% No) for Proposition 83, the so-called Jessica’s Law, sex offender punishment initiative.

    • A plurality of voters (46%) is also backing Proposition 90, the eminent domain laws initiative, while 31% are opposed.

    • Voter sentiment about Proposition 85, the parental notification of teen abortion initiative, is about evenly divided, with 44% on the Yes side and 45% on the No side.

    More on Rogan

    Matier and Ross take a look at some of the details of Jim Rogan's appointment to the bench.

    Tuesday, August 01, 2006

    Latest Poll: Gov up by 6

    The latest poll from Rasmussen shows Schwarzenegger up by six points, 47% to 41%.

    Find more from the poll here.

    From the Field

    Below are the latest down-ticket numbers from the Field Poll. Two interesting things to take from the numbers. First is the relative strength of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger compared to the rest of the Republican ticket. In the latest Field numbers he was up by eight points. No other Republican is even in the lead. Second, is the relative weakness of Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante, who is among the best known down-ticket Dems after running for governor in the recall in 2003. Bustamante polled barely above challenger Steve Poizner. Worse for Bustamante, Poizner is the only GOPer on the ticket who is likely to self-fund, having already kciked in several million dollars for his bid.

    With that, the numbers:

    Lieutenant governor
    John Garamendi - 48%
    Tom McClintock - 38%
    Other - 1%
    Undecided - 13%

    Attorney general
    Jerry Brown - 54%
    Chuck Poochigian - 33%
    Other - 1%
    Undecided - 12%

    State treasurer
    Bill Lockyer - 52%
    Claude Parrish - 27%
    Other - 1%
    Undecided - 20%

    State controller
    John Chiang - 38%
    Tony Strickland - 27%
    Other - 1%
    Undecided - 34%

    Insurance commissioner
    Cruz Bustamante - 43%
    Steve Poizner - 39%
    Other - 2%
    Undecided - 16%

    Secretary of state
    Debra Bowen - 38%
    Bruce McPherson - 35%
    Other - 1%
    Undecided - 26%