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  • Governor's race
  • 2018 election
  • California Republicans

Republican John Cox plans to launch the first television ad of the 2018 race for governor on Tuesday, moments before President Trump’s State of the Union address.

The 30-second ad, titled “Bacon,” is scheduled to debut 12 minutes before the speech. It will run for 10 days on Fox News Channel in California and cost $200,000, according to Cox spokesman Matt Shupe. It depicts lobbyists as pigs roaming through Sacramento and eating from a trough.

“Every legislative session, the special interest lobbyists head to Sacramento. They roam the corridors of power, buying influence and basically sticking it to the middle class,” a narrator says in the ad over the scenes of pigs. “Corporate welfare, liberal causes, and of course there’s the public employee unions, the biggest special interest of all. Ready to clean out the barn? Join John Cox. Because he has a plan to deal with the corrupting influence of the special interests.” 

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  • Governor's race
  • California Democrats

An East County congressional candidate is calling for a lasting peace between Palestinians and Israelis after a Tel Aviv newspaper published a story about his grandfather's ties to a terrorist group.

Ammar Campa-Najjar, 28, of Jamul, says he never met his grandfather, Muhammad Yusuf al-Najjar, who died in 1973.

  • Congressional races
  • California in Congress
  • 2018 election
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa)
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa) (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Former Trump campaign aide Richard W. Gates III is expected to plead guilty today to conspiracy and lying about a 2013 Ukraine-related meeting between his former business partner Paul Manafort, a lobbyist and California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa).

The meeting became public in the summer when Manafort belatedly filed a disclosure form for his work as a foreign agent on behalf of Ukraine. Rohrabacher at the time called it a “nice little dinner” and said that Russia and the Baltic states probably came up, but it wasn't the focus of their conversation.

Three days after the dinner, Manafort contributed $1,000 to Rohrabacher's reelection campaign. Gates was Manafort's deputy on the campaign and continued to serve as a senior advisor through Trump's inauguration. He is expected to testify against Manafort if his case goes to trial.

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Top from left, Gavin Newsom, Antonio Villaraigosa and John Chiang. Lower from left, Delaine Eastin, Dianne Feinstein and Kevin de León.
Top from left, Gavin Newsom, Antonio Villaraigosa and John Chiang. Lower from left, Delaine Eastin, Dianne Feinstein and Kevin de León. (Los Angeles Times)

Thousands of California Democrats are gathering in San Diego today for their annual convention, where potential presidential contenders will make appearances and state candidates will battle for endorsements from the party faithful in advance of the June primary.

Here’s what you need to know:

How many endorsements are up for grabs?

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