I'm Christina Bellantoni, this is Essential Politics, and you're invited to come play bingo with us this evening.
Let's face it — as political events go, tonight's Republican debate is about as make-or-break as you get.
The setting (Florida) is the state that could end things for Sen.
We know that voters in several crucial primary states made up their minds in the final days of the race, and that debates have proved influential. Can Rubio stand out in his home state? Can Ohio Gov.
On the other hand, it may not matter when it comes to the GOP nomination. Nothing anyone has thrown at Trump has shaken the support of his ardent backers, who make up about 4 in 10 Republican voters.
But as as
Mark Z. Barabak finds Ohio is the only state that's close in the grouping of states where Trump foes are attempting to stop — or at least slow — his march to the nomination.
It can get complicated, so we're tracking the delegate race so you don't have to.
Sanders and Clinton squared off in the most extensive forum yet focusing on immigration policy, arguing over who is more friendly toward immigrants. The debate in Florida was a stark reminder of the wide gulf between Democrats and Republicans, whose presidential candidates have emphasized increasing border security or deporting immigrants who are in the country illegally, as Chris Megerian and Michael A. Memoli write.
And Kate Linthicum caught that Clinton's pledge to differ from
From talk about "the most beautiful tall wall" to a standing ovation, we caught every moment.
WATCH THE GOP DEBATE WITH US
Tonight's the night!
There's still time to RSVP for the free L.A. Times debate watch party at The Regent in downtown Los Angeles. Join us!
We’ll start with a political panel featuring me,
Doors open at 4:30 p.m.
FINAL VOTE ON TOBACCO?
All eyes in Sacramento are on the state Senate this morning, where a package of closely watched tobacco regulation bills could be sent to Gov.
We reported on these bills last week as they made their way through the Assembly, efforts that include raising California's smoking age to 21. One of the bills, regulating electronic cigarettes, was the subject of some last-minute lobbying on Wednesday. Patrick McGreevy reports that industry officials met privately with the governor's staff to urge that Brown veto the bill if it makes it to his desk.
And one more thing to watch: If the Senate takes action on the tobacco bills, it would also likely adjourn the Legislature's special session on healthcare. That would mean one of 2015's most talked about laws, allowing aid-in-dying rules for the terminally ill, would officially take effect as soon as June 8.
You can track what's happening each day in Sacramento on our Essential Politics news feed.
RECOGNIZING A LOS ANGELES ICON
Next week, a red oak will be planted on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol to recognize the late Rep. Edward Roybal, who represented Los Angeles in Congress for 30 years and was the first Latino from California to serve in Congress since 1879.
Roybal co-founded the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, and founded the National Assn. of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2014.
His daughter, Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard, led the effort to have the tree planted, and will attend the event along with House Minority Leader
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