A two-year dispute over California's Department of Motor Vehicles voter registration procedures has again landed the agency in court.
On Tuesday, a coalition of voting rights groups filed a federal lawsuit alleging DMV officials still require drivers renewing their registration by mail to fill out a separate card if they also want to register to vote. That separate step, the lawsuit said, violates the 1993 "Motor Voter" law passed by Congress.
"It's an embarrassment that in 2017, more than 20 years after the law was enacted, California DMV is still violating the law by making millions of people jump through hoops to become voters," said Kathay Feng, executive director of California Common Cause.
In the race for a Los Angeles congressional seat, Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez is bulking up on support from progressive groups and officials. The California Nurses Assn. on Tuesday endorsed Gomez to replace former Rep. Xavier Becerra, adding to a long list of left-leaning endorsements he's rolled out in recent weeks.
While Gomez was often criticized by fellow candidates in the crowded primary as being entrenched in the Democratic Party establishment, many are backing him in his runoff with attorney and businessman Robert Lee Ahn.
Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Turlock), who voted for the Republican healthcare bill that passed the House last week, flew home this week to face his constituents, meeting with a small crowd Tuesday morning in his Central Valley district.
"You voted against me," said one woman who said she depends on Medi-Cal for her healthcare.
"I voted for something that I thought would help my district," he said.
California Sen. Kamala Harris had some heated words this week for an Idaho congressman's assertion at a town hall that “nobody dies because they don’t have access to healthcare."
"Like this guy, this congressman, you might as well say, ‘People don't starve because they don't have food.' What the ... is that? What are you saying? How can you say that?" Harris said during an interview with Pod Save America, a podcast run by former Obama administration staffers. It was recorded live in front of an audience of more than 2,000 people in San Francisco, according to her staff.
You can listen to the podcast here. The Democratic freshman senator's comments to the friendly crowd begin about 42 minutes in.
Dogs could be dying as part of a proposed experiment at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System and members of Congress say they want more information about animal testing at the facility.
In a Monday letter to the Veterans Affairs Inspector General, Nevada Rep. Dina Titus and eight members of Los Angeles' delegation demanded to know more about the experiment, including how much it could cost and what other experiments the Los Angeles VA is conducting on animals.
The proposed experiment involves giving 18 narcoleptic Dobermans antidepressants or methamphetamine, then killing the dogs and studying how the drugs affect the production of histamines — the body's response to allergens — in their brains. The animal rights group White Coat Waste Project, which obtained a 2016 research application for the experiment through a Freedom of Information Act request, brought the proposed experiment to the attention of lawmakers.
Being a member of the Communist Party would no longer be a fireable offense for state jobs under a measure narrowly approved by the California Assembly on Monday.
The measure by Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) would strike language in California law dating from 1953 that warns of "a clear and present danger, which the Legislature of the State of California finds is great and imminent, that in order to advance the program, policies and objectives of the world communism movement, communist organizations in the State of California and their members will engage in concerted effort to hamper, restrict, interfere with, impede, or nullify the efforts of the State...and their members will infiltrate and seek employment by the State and its public agencies."
In another section of statute, being a member of the Communist Party is sufficient cause for dismissal for public employees. Bonta's bill would eliminate the reference to communism. Under his proposal, it would still be a fireable offense to knowingly advocate the violent overthrow of government.
Actor Antonio Sabato Jr. is running for Congress, challenging Rep. Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village), who represents the southern central coast and most of Ventura County, according to documents filed with the Federal Election Commission on Monday.
Attempts to reach the Republican candidate were unsuccessful Monday, but GOP strategist Charles Moran, who will serve as Sabato’s fundraiser, confirmed the run. Strategist Jeff Corless will serve as a top adviser.
Sabato is a longtime actor best known for roles in “General Hospital” and “Melrose Place” and as a model for Calvin Klein underwear. In recent years he has appeared in several reality television shows, including starring in “My Antonio,” a VH1 contest for which women competed for his affection, and “Dancing With the Stars.”