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Panicked callers to Alba Hernandez’s hotline reported a possible immigration raid. She rushed to the West Oakland home to find officers had blocked off traffic in what they described as a human-trafficking investigation.

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  • Congressional races
  • 2018 election
Former Orange County Republican Party chairman Scott Baugh started the process to file to run on Wednesday.
Former Orange County Republican Party chairman Scott Baugh started the process to file to run on Wednesday. (Jon Fleischman)

Former Orange County GOP chairman Scott Baugh plans to run for the House seat of Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, a fellow Republican, according to multiple sources close to Baugh.

The entry of Baugh, a well-known name in Orange County Republican circles, would scramble the already crowded field in the 48th Congressional District race. With more than half a dozen Democrats hoping to flip the district and the an ugly party-endorsement fight still lingering, Baugh could put Democrats at added risk of getting shut out of the November top-two runoff.

Baugh pulled filing papers at the Orange County Registrar of Voters’ office Wednesday and paid the $1,740 fee to run. He has yet to announce a campaign and did not respond to a request for comment. Baugh has until Friday to complete additional paperwork to get his name on the June 5 primary ballot. 

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California's pot czar has begun warning marijuana sellers that they can no longer operate without state licenses.
California's pot czar has begun warning marijuana sellers that they can no longer operate without state licenses. (Mathew Sumner / Associated Press)

California’s pot regulation agency has sent 900 warning letters to marijuana shops suspected of operating without state licenses.

Lori Ajax, the chief of the state Bureau of Cannabis Control, also sent a cease-and-desist notice to the marijuana-location service Weedmaps, telling it to stop advertising sellers that lack a permit, officials said Wednesday.

Ajax, the first person to hold her post, notified Weedmaps that a new state law that took effect Jan. 1 requires all marijuana sellers to have state licenses and all advertisements to contain the state license number.

(Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The most prominent super PAC dedicated to helping Democrats regain control of the House is reserving nearly $8 million worth of television ad time in California in the final weeks of the 2018 campaign.

Flipping a few of California’s Republican-held congressional districts is a big part of Democrats’ strategy to retake the House, and candidates, outside groups and political action committees are expected to flood the state’s airwaves.

California’s expensive media markets are getting nearly a fourth of the $43 million House Majority PAC is spending across 33 media markets. The PAC, which has close ties to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, is reserving $5.2 million in ad time on cable and broadcast in Los Angeles, $1.5 million in Sacramento and $1.2 million in San Diego.

  • Governor's race
  • 2018 election
  • California Democrats
(Evan Vucci / Associated Press)

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf seized upon remarks U.S. Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions made Wednesday as he castigated them during a speech in Sacramento, accusing the state’s leaders of illegally undermining federal immigration policy.

Sessions, who was speaking at a law enforcement conference where he announced the federal government’s lawsuit against California over “sanctuary state” policies, accused Schaaf of warning about impending immigration raids in Oakland and helping criminals who are in the country illegally avoid apprehension.

“Here's my message to Mayor Schaaf: How dare you,” Sessions said. “How dare you needlessly endanger the lives of law enforcement just to promote your radical open-borders agenda.”

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  • Governor's race
  • 2018 election
  • California Democrats
State Treasurer John Chiang files to run for governor of California at the Los Angeles County registrar's office in Norwalk on March 7.
State Treasurer John Chiang files to run for governor of California at the Los Angeles County registrar's office in Norwalk on March 7. (Christina House / Los Angeles Times)
  • California in Congress
Rep. David Valadao (R-Hanford).
Rep. David Valadao (R-Hanford). (Bill Clark / CQ Roll Call)

Several of California’s Republican representatives are openly challenging President Trump’s plans to impose steel and aluminum tariffs. The tariffs are a rare source of disagreement between congressional Republicans and the White House, and the opposition in California comes from several lawmakers who face difficult reelection bids this fall.

Reps. Devin Nunes of Tulare, Tom McClintock of Elk Grove, Ed Royce of Fullerton, Mimi Walters of Irvine and David Valadao of Hanford were among the 102 House Republicans who wrote a letter to Trump on Wednesday urging him to narrowly tailor tariffs rather than impose them worldwide. House and Senate GOP leaders also have pushed Trump to change his mind, or at least narrow the tariffs to avoid retaliatory tariffs or a trade war.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday that the president would sign a proclamation on new steel and aluminum tariffs by the end of the week, and indicated exceptions could be made for Canada and Mexico.

  • California Republicans
(Mark Wilson / Getty Images)

President Trump will headline a high-dollar fundraiser for his reelection campaign when he visits California next week for the first time in his presidency, according to an invitation obtained by The Times.

Donors will contribute up to $250,000 each to Trump’s campaign and various Republican National Committee accounts to attend the Tuesday evening event at an undisclosed location in Beverly Hills.

The top ticket price includes a roundtable, photo opportunity and dinner. The cheapest ticket, which is dinner only, costs $35,000 for an individual and $50,000 for a couple.

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We shall see Mr. Sessions in court. Based on the U.S. Department of Justice’s track record in court, quite frankly I like our odds.

Protesters rallied against an appearance by U.S. Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions at the Sawyer Hotel in Sacramento.
Protesters rallied against an appearance by U.S. Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions at the Sawyer Hotel in Sacramento. (Josh Edelson / For The Times)
Protesters gathered outside the Sawyer Hotel in Sacramento, while Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions announced a lawsuit against California inside.
Protesters gathered outside the Sawyer Hotel in Sacramento, while Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions announced a lawsuit against California inside. (Josh Edelson / For The Times)
Protesters march outside the Sawyer Hotel in Sacramento.
Protesters march outside the Sawyer Hotel in Sacramento. (Josh Edelson / For The Times)