Here are The Times’ picks in selected races in the June 7 primary:
Republican nomination: No endorsement. Donald Trump doesn’t need California’s votes to secure his spot on the November ballot, and Californians shouldn’t give them to this astoundingly unqualified candidate.
U.S. Senate: Kamala Harris. The race to succeed Barbara Boxer has attracted 34 candidates, but filtering for capability and viability, it comes down to two Democrats: Harris, the state attorney general, and Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Orange). Harris has done a mixed job in her current post, but if she finally focuses, she has the intelligence and principles to become a fine senator. Sanchez has failed to demonstrate that she has the skills and temperament for the job.
House of Representatives, 44th District: Nanette Barragán. In this race to succeed Janice Hahn, attorney and former Hermosa Beach City Council member Barragán, a Democrat, is the candidate who has demonstrated the ability to get important things done for her community in a short amount of time. Her chief opponent, state Sen. Isadore Hall III (D-Compton), is a big recipient of oil, tobacco, gambling and alcohol industry largesse, who in the Assembly consistently opposed even the most modest legislation aimed at slowing climate change.
Los Angeles County District Attorney: Jackie Lacey. Lacey has brought a cautious yet open-minded approach to her job as the top prosecutor in the nation’s most populous county.
Los Angeles County Supervisor, 2nd District: Mark Ridley-Thomas. Ridley-Thomas has used his position to boost the county’s efforts to fight poverty, improve child protection, increase sheriff oversight and combat homelessness.
Los Angeles County Supervisor, 4th District: Janice Hahn. Hahn lags her chief rival, Steve Napolitano, on the crucial subject of fiscal responsibility but has the conscience and commitment to see through the county’s mission to serve people in need.
Los Angeles County Supervisor, 5th District: Ara Najarian. In the district that Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich has represented for 36 years, the highest quality candidates are his chief of staff, Kathryn Barger, and Glendale Mayor Ara Najarian. Najarian would bring some fresh perspective along with solid experience in transportation and sustainable development issues.
Los Angeles County Superior Court
Office 11: Steven Schreiner. Schreiner, a deputy district attorney, is the most experienced of the four candidates and the one most ready to serve on the bench.
Office 42: Cyndy Zuzga. A Superior Court commissioner already doing much of the work of a judge, Zuzga has gone the extra mile with involvement in restorative justice programs for young offenders. She also was an experienced criminal prosecutor.
Office 60: James Kaddo. Kaddo is an experienced and accomplished judge who has been challenged by a wine merchant who has not practiced law in or out of a courtroom in years. This one’s easy.
Office 84: Susan Jung Townsend. One of three deputy district attorneys running for this seat, along with a lawyer in private practice, Townsend wins high marks from opposing lawyers for her integrity and judgment.
Office 120: Ray Santana. As with the other sitting judges who have been challenged without explanation by lesser-qualified candidates, Santana, deserves reelection.
Office 158: David A. Berger. This criminal prosecutor has demonstrated his ability to separate his opinions from his performance in the courtroom and would make a good judge.
Office 165: Kathryn Solórzano. Voters should keep Solórzano on the bench, not only because she is an experienced and qualified judge, but because all challenges based on inadequate grounds, like this one, inject an unfortunate element of politics into the court system.
Proposition 50: No. This ballot measure would allow supermajorities of the Assembly or state Senate to suspend members without pay. That sounds great when we’re thinking about the three state senators whose alleged or proven misbehavior inspired this proposal two years ago. But if Proposition 50 becomes law, it could too easily be used by leaders of the majority party to threaten or punish lawmakers who express independent views.
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