Several members of California's congressional delegation derided a tweet from President Trump on Thursday morning that seemed to be a threat to cut federal funding to UC Berkeley because of a violent protest.
The crowd of hundreds was ready to march, winding a circuitous route from a Bakersfield park to the nearby district office of Rep. Kevin McCarthy to rally in support of the Affordable Care Act. But before they hoisted their signs and joined in healthcare-themed chants, there was a quick geographic roll call.
“How many of you are from Bakersfield?” asked the emcee. About half the attendees cheered. The rest had come from farther-flung homes: Long Beach, Sacramento, Riverside. They had traveled via chartered bus, largely with labor unions or grass-roots liberal groups, to the heart of the California effort to save Obamacare.
A potent mix of politics and policy has drawn the Central Valley into the center of the debate around the future of the Affordable Care Act. It is the region in the state most transformed by the landmark healthcare law. It is also a rare Republican enclave in California, represented in Congress by members of the majority party that will determine the law’s fate — including McCarthy, who, as House majority leader, commands a top post in the GOP.
Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-Palm Desert) wants to prevent candidates and elected officials from spending campaign or federal funds on family business.
The package of bills is a response to the millions of dollars President Trump's campaign spent at businesses he owned, such as campaign events at his Florida resort or on copies of his own book. The bills will be filed this morning.
One bill would prohibit federal candidates from spending campaign money at businesses they or a family member owns.
Leaders of California's pension fund for teachers lowered their official investment expectations on Wednesday, a shift that will raise costs for both state taxpayers and many teachers.
Directors of the California State Teachers Retirement Fund, CalSTRS, took action to cut the investment assumption by half a percentage point by the summer of 2018. The decision follows a similar move by the state's largest pension fund, CalPERS, to lower its investment projection last December.
Board members, faced with a widening gap between investment returns and expectations, said they took action to lessen the likelihood that existing retirement promises made to teachers won't be kept.
California Treasurer John Chiang and Controller Betty Yee and 26 other Asian American politicians in California and around the nation have sent a letter to President Trump asking him to rescind his executive order banning citizens of Syria, Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen and Libya from entering the U.S. for 90 days.
The letter on Wednesday accused Trump of unconstitutionally targeting Muslims and said his order perverted “this nation’s melting pot into a boiling cauldron of intolerance, hate, and division.”
The letter noted that Asian Americans have been targeted with similar policies in America's past, including the Chinese Exclusion Act in the 1880s, which was the nation’s first major law excluding specific immigrants from the county. During World War II, Japanese Americans were sent to internment camps.
The California Supreme Court on Wednesday once more delayed the implementation of a voter-approved measure that seeks to speed up the state's death penalty system, as it considers a pending lawsuit challenging the measure's provisions.
Proposition 66, which voters approved in November, aims to hasten executions by designating trial courts to hear petitions challenging death row convictions, limiting successive petitions and expanding the pool of lawyers who could take on death penalty appeals.
But it was challenged in state's highest court by former state Atty. Gen. John Van de Kamp and lawyer Ron Briggs before election officials even called the results.
Rep. Scott Peters (D-San Diego) is asking for a full accounting of who was consulted in the drafting of President Trump's ban on travel and immigration to the U.S. by citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries.
Peters and 70 House Democrats have asked for a report from the Government Accountability Office detailing what input was solicited from federal agencies before the order was issued, how the Department of Homeland Security was told to enforce it, and what kind of legal analysis was done before the order was signed by Trump on Friday afternoon. The report would also include communications about the administration, all of which could be used when the order is challenged in court, Peters said.
The order, which prohibits travelers from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen from entering the U.S. for 90 days, threw airports into chaos over the weekend. Big protests sprouted up at airports as hundreds of people were detained in U.S. airports or suddenly prevented from getting onto planes headed to the U.S. The order also indefinitely blocks refugees from Syria and blocks refugees from all other countries for 120 days.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Antonio Villaraigosa on Wednesday warned that the Trump administration’s vow to repeal the Affordable Care Act and renegotiate the North American Free Trade agreement could devastate millions of Californians and plunge the state into recession.
The former Los Angeles mayor also took shots at President Trump’s immigration policies, including his promise to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, suggesting he was trying to divide the country for his own political gain.
“We embrace our Latino heritage as every bit a part of our American heritage,” Villaraigosa said. “Because blind-eye bigots don’t know what we know. Latinos stepping up to take leadership is not a threat to American values. It is an emphatic embrace of the American values of reveling in our diversity and welcoming our newcomers.”
New federal finance reports out this week reveal where those targeted candidates' piggy banks stand as the new election cycle begins. Some are in strong shape, while others have to rebuild their war chests after costly campaigns in 2016.
In CA-25, Rep. Steve Knight (R-Palmdale) is starting off with $37,192 in his war chest.
In CA-21, Rep. David Valadao (R-Hanford) has $49,172 in the bank.
In CA-10, Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Turlock) reports having a sizeable $326,702 on hand.
In CA-49, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista) had $329,152 in the tank.
In CA-45, Rep. Mimi Walters (R-Irvine) reported $393,070 in the bank.
In CA-39, Rep. Ed Royce (R-Fullerton) has a robust $2.7 million at his disposal.
Though Knight has a tiny piggy bank, he got off to a slow start last cycle and still held on to his seat despite a well-financed opponent. And he has time to build his funds back up: No Democrat has emerged yet to challenge him in 2018.