There’s a better way to save DACA than shutting down the federal government. Sen. Kamala Harris of California has signaled that she’s willing to risk shutting down the federal government to protect Dreamers. But using blackmail to force legislators to act isn’t wise. There are consequences for shuttering the government, particularly in Sacramento.
Mayor Darrell Steinberg had a strong first year, but there will be plenty to do in 2018. He led significant progress on homelessness, economic development, the arts and more. Steinberg, himself, says success in 2018 is even more important.
Jack Ohman sees what stars fell on Alabama to create Roy Moore. Feel the morality here.
Susan Rubio: As I attend political events in Los Angeles County, I hear politicians give speech after sanctimonious speech about the sexual harassment allegations in the state Capitol. Speakers repeatedly express their disgust, promise swift action and claim they would have never allowed something so horrible to happen if they had known. Sadly, they did know.
Karen Hanretty: A drama over sex, power and morality is playing out in the U.S. Senate race in Alabama where Judge Roy Moore faces voters on Tuesday. It’s the story of a man accused of preying on teenage girls. And it hits close to home in Sacramento because of similarities to a former local politician.
Bill Whalen: Gov. Jerry Brown should use his big State of the State speech in January to go big on the sexual harassment issue hovering over the Capitol. He should appoint a blue-ribbon panel to examine the treatment of women beyond the confines of Sacramento.
Ginger Rutland: At most Sen. Al Franken, who announced Thursday he is resigning, is guilty of boorish behavior – not assault, not pedophilia, not even sexual harassment. But with today’s fast changing, contradictory and confusing reversal of sexual norms, he’s being burned at the stake, walked down the plank, buried alive. It’s unfair.
Julian Cañete and Aubry Stone: Both the California Black Chamber of Commerce and the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce urge Congress to reconsider eliminating the state and local tax deduction. It is essential for mom-and-pop businesses to survive and grow.
Take a number: 19 percent; 71 percent
We all know there’s a partisan split on many issues in America. But it goes to extremes on the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign. In a new Pew Research Center poll released Thursday, only 19 percent of Republicans – but 71 percent of Democrats – say the Russia probe is “very important” to the nation.
Also, while 26 percent of Republicans say that Trump officials definitely or probably had improper contact with Russian officials, 82 percent of Democrats hold that view. And 44 percent of Republicans say they are at least somewhat confident that special counsel Robert Mueller will conduct a fair investigation, 68 percent of Democrats say the same.
The survey was conducted as Michael Flynn, Trump’s former national security adviser, pleaded guilty Friday to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia’s then-ambassador to the U.S. – Foon Rhee, @foonrhee
Take another number: $525,097
Speaking of the Great Divide, Judge Roy Moore’s latest campaign finance report shows he raised $525,097 in donations of $200 or more in the 14 days between the Washington Post’s first story about his proclivities for teen-age girls and Nov. 22, the last day covered by the report. In the 14 days preceding the Post’s first story, he raised $189,314 in increments of $200 or more.
U.S. Sen. Al Franken resigned and Assemblyman Matt Dababneh lawyered up, hiring a crisis communications firm as he denies having masturbated in front of lobbyist Pamela Lopez in a Las Vegas restroom in 2016. Sen. Tony Mendoza, D-Artesia, has taken a different approach amid accusations that he invited young women to his various rooms. Although he has been stripped of his committee assignments, Mendoza is advertising in the Senate Daybook, a listing of goings on about the Capitol, seeking a legislative director. “Must have knowledge of the legislative process, as well as the structure and policies of state government; the Senate's personnel rules, policies, and best practices pertaining to supervising, sexual harassment and EEO.”
Dr. Margot Kushel, New England Journal of Medicine: In a study that my colleagues and I conducted of homeless adults 50 years of age or older in Oakland, 44 percent had never experienced homelessness before they were 50; one-third had had their first homeless episode in the prior year. Those with late-life homelessness had fewer behavioral risk factors than those with early-onset homelessness, but many remained homeless for extended periods.
Charlotte Observer: The depths to which the Republican Party has fallen was summed up on the Fox News Channel earlier this week. “If Al Franken is in the Senate, if John Conyers and others are staying, then why not have Roy Moore?” former Republican Gov. Mike Huckabee said on the network.
Los Angeles Times: Diesel exhaust fumes are not only the most foul tailpipe emissions on the road, they contribute to asthma, heart disease, cancer and a host of other ills. But never mind public health and science. President Donald Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency is trying to reopen a loophole that would let truckers avoid all those pesky and costly clean-air requirements by putting old, dirty engines in new truck bodies.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat: Wind-driven flames racing through canyons and down tree-lined ridges. Residents fleeing homes in the dark of smoke-filled nights. Firefighters racing toward mountains crowned with orange glow. The scenes this week in Ventura County and other communities around Los Angeles are all too familiar. This points out once again the need for California to develop a more effective system for alerting residents.
Dallas Morning News: Competing versions of the Republican tax plan cleared both chambers of Congress in the last two weeks. Now a big question remains: Which version will prevail? There are myriad differences in how the bills treat income. Three of the most significant have to do with tax-code simplification, the Affordable Care Act and corporate tax rates.
Newsday: The president of the United States is now at the center of an obstruction-of-justice investigation by the FBI. There can be no other conclusion after last Friday’s guilty plea by former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and the bewildering statements made in the past few days by Trump. Firing special counsel Robert Mueller, who is conducting a legitimate and serious investigation, would bring disastrous consequences. So would a pardon of Flynn to stop him from telling the FBI what he knows.
Gail Collins, New York Times: On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed a bill known as “concealed carry reciprocity.” It basically says gun owners only have to follow the laws of the state they hail from. Some states will give a permit to carry a concealed weapon to an 18-year-old. Some don’t care about a record of stalking. Some don’t have any rules at all.
Christine Flowers, Philadelphia Daily News: The #MeToo moment has gotten unwieldy and unforgiving, mixing all sorts of conduct together and retroactively stigmatizing acts that – until the social media age – were considered boorish and brutish, but not capital offenses. Now, the white gloves are off, and women have decided that it is time for payback in full.
Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times: Every Israeli government since its founding has craved U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as its capital. And every U.S. government has refrained from doing that, arguing that such a recognition should come only in the wake of an agreed, final-status peace accord between Israelis and Palestinians – until now. On Wednesday, President Donald Trump just gave it away – for free.
Michael Gerson, Washington Post: By embracing Roy Moore, Republicans show they value certain political ends – tax cuts, a conservative judiciary – more than ethical considerations. When it comes to confirming judges who oppose Roe v. Wade, the vote of a statesman is no better than the vote of a sexual predator – or, presumably, of a drug dealer or a murderer.
Dana Milbank, Washington Post: We are losing with North Korea, getting closer to nuclear war. We are losing with Russia and China, which are expanding their power unchecked. We are losing in trade as imports from China and Mexico hit records.
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: Even if special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe catches President Trump, family members and associates red-handed, Republicans in Congress may refuse to do anything about it.
Trudy Rubin, Philadelphia Inquirer: The president outlined no new strategy for peace that would include his new position on Jerusalem. His move seemed more oriented toward pleasing his evangelical base (and key Republican donor Sheldon Adelson) than achieving peace.
“Marijuana is beneficial as a medicine for some and a fun distraction to others.” – Paul Bergman, Sacramento