In a challenge to President-elect Donald Trump’s proposal to build a wall at the Mexico border, a California lawmaker said Monday he is introducing a bill that would require the project to first be approved by the state’s voters.
State Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) said the legislation is one of three proposals he is introducing as a package called Fight For California. Another bill wouldprohibit state agencies from providing federal entities with information for purposes of compiling a so-called Muslim registry, another Trump proposal.
“We’re not going to allow a wall that harms our environment and our economy,” Lara said in a statement. “We’re not going to allow personal data on individual Californians' religious beliefs to be used to compile an unconstitutional database.”
Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez, a Democrat from Los Angeles, is jumping into the fray to replace Rep. Xavier Becerra in Congress, he told The Times on Monday.
"After talking it over with my family and supporters, I have decided to run for the 34th Congressional seat," Gomez said in a statement. "I have worked for the people of the 34th District as their State Assemblymember for the past four years. I have fought to ensure everyone – no matter where they live – has access to clean air and water, every worker has a fair and livable wage, and every child can go to college."
"Now more than ever, we need strong valued-based leadership in Washington that will protect our families, friends and neighbors from divisive rhetoric and policies," he said. "I’m ready to stand up and do just that."
California's five incoming House freshmen got their first taste of the frantic pace of life as a member of Congress last month. They just wrapped up two weeks of daylong classes on Capitol Hill learning about cybersecurity, ethics, protocol, how to write legislation and how to manage the budgets for their offices in Washington and back home.
With President-elect Donald Trump's campaign rhetoric on illegal immigration still fresh on their minds, legislative Democrats have readied a pair of proposals they believe will offer some immigrants additional legal help.
The bills, set to be introduced on the first day of the new legislative session Monday, primarily aim to bolster the legal representation of immigrants who are in the country illegally and threatened with deportation. California has no formal role in national immigration policy, but the bills could supercharge the state's role in pushing back against a Trump administration's effort to deport as many as 3 million people living in the United States.
Most sweeping is a bill that would authorize state government grants to nonprofit organizations that provide legal help for immigrants facing deportation. Dubbed "due process for all" in a summary document obtained by The Times, Democrats believe the money could help a significant number of immigrants to successfully challenge deportations.
A union representing some 95,000 state workers has called off plans for a one-day strike, saying that it has "found a pathway forward" in contract negotiations with the administration of Gov. Jerry Brown.
The announcement on Friday afternoon by SEIU Local 1000 averted what was shaping up to be a test of wills between state officials — who warned that its members are subject to a no-strike clause — and the politically powerful union.
A spokesman for the union declined to offer any additional details beyond a brief statement from Yvonne Walker, the union's president.
Ahead of next month’s inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, more than two dozen returning and new Democratic members of the California Senate on Friday asked President Obama to enact a ban on new oil drilling off the state’s coast.
The letter signed by 26 of the 27 members of the new Senate Democratic Caucus that will be in place Monday cites the presidential authority to block new oil and gas drilling under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act.
Last month, the Obama administration said it was banning offshore oil drilling in the Arctic through 2022.
The phone call that Gov. Jerry Brown made on Wednesday night was unusual. A governor who marches to his own methodical timetable for decisions was having his hand forced by the politics of Capitol Hill, and the job of California attorney general hung in the balance.
In the end, Brown got the man he wanted: Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Los Angeles). But it was Becerra's effort to make a big career move that complicated things.
In interviews with advisers to the governor and those close to Becerra, a portrait emerged of two veteran politicians who have mutual admiration but don't really know each other very well. In fact, the 12-term congressman plans to spend part of this weekend meeting with Brown in Sacramento.
Two state lawmakers on Friday asked newly selected but still-to-be-confirmed state Attorney General Xavier Becerra to give priority to the long-standing investigation into alleged misconduct in the California Public Utilities Commission.
State Sen. Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo), Assemblyman Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco) and San Bruno Mayor Jim Ruane sent a letter to the congressman asking that he continue the probe, which was launched in 2014, when he takes office as the state’s top cop in the coming weeks.
It was launched by current Attorney General Kamala Harris and involved a search for documents at the home of former PUC President Michael Peevey.
Lou Correa is a well-known name in central Orange County; over the years, he's represented the area in the state Assembly and the state Senate and on the county Board of Supervisors.
But there's a side of Correa that few are as familiar with: a man who lived much of his early life in Mexico, learned English as a second language and whose parents struggled in low-paying jobs while he was growing up in Anaheim.
Correa, who was born in East Los Angeles, said many of his family and friends were immigrants, and that one of his top priorities during his first term in Congress will be to fight the deportations that President-elect Donald Trump has promised.