268 posts
  • Ballot measures
  • California Republicans
  • California Democrats
Gas prices are displayed at a Chevron station in Sacramento two days before the state gas tax was increased by 12 cents a gallon.
Gas prices are displayed at a Chevron station in Sacramento two days before the state gas tax was increased by 12 cents a gallon. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Republican activists were given the green light Monday to launch a petition drive aimed at qualifying a measure for the November 2018 ballot that would repeal recently enacted gas taxes and vehicle fees meant for road repairs and mass transit improvement.

The proposed state constitutional amendment, which would also require future gas taxes to be approved by the voters, was given a title and summary Monday by the state attorney general’s office, allowing opponents of the fuel levies to begin a drive that needs to collect 587,407 signatures of registered voters.

Republicans hope to make the gas tax increases a hot-button issue in the 2018 election for the Democrat-controlled Legislature that approved the hikes.

  • California in Congress
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

A San Pedro man threatened to kill Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles) in a voicemail filled with racist and anti-gay slurs after he became angered over her criticisms of President Trump, according to court documents.

Anthony Scott Lloyd, 44, was indicted late last week on a charge of threatening to kill Waters in a voicemail left at her Washington, D.C., office last month, prosecutors said. Lloyd, who was arrested Nov. 9, remains free in lieu of $20,000 bail.

According to an arrest affidavit, Lloyd became angered while listening to talk radio on Oct. 22 when he heard a report involving Waters making disparaging comments about Trump.

  • 2018 election

Top Democratic donor Tom Steyer is taking his effort to impeach President Trump to New York City’s Times Square with billboard ads that will run until New Year's Day.

The ads, which will run for 10 minutes every hour, invite people to sign a petition at that urges Congress to impeach Trump. The ads will include a tally of signatures. According to a news release, 2.5 million people have signed the petition.

Steyer has laid out $20 million for impeachment ads that have been running on TV across the country.

  • California Legislature
  • California Democrats

Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra announced he will not seek reelection Monday, citing “persistent rumors and speculation” regarding sexual harassment claims.

“I spent my life advocating for the Northeast Valley, fighting for a fair share for our communities and residents,” Bocanegra (D-Pacoima) said in a statement. “It is because of my deep commitment to you, residents of the 39th Assembly District, that I have made the decision to resign from the State Assembly, effective September 1, 2018, and immediately resign my leadership position. I am also suspending my campaign and will not run for re-election.” 

  • Congressional races
  • 2018 election
Diedra Greenaway
Diedra Greenaway (Greenaway campaign)

Saying she needs to respond to Republican attacks on women’s rights, immigration and the social safety net, Diedra Greenaway is challenging Rep. Steve Knight in the Antelope Valley’s 25th Congressional District.

“The current political climate is more dangerous now than it has been in my entire life,” she said.

Greenaway of Lancaster said she’s also running because she doesn’t think the Republican Knight of Palmdale has been responsive to voters.

  • Politics podcast

Few presidents of the University of California have ever had the political resume of Janet Napolitano. In the coming weeks and months, she may need those skills more than ever.

On this week's California Politics Podcast, we discuss the new report that concluded there was "interference" by Napolitano's staff during a state audit into her office's finances.

We also take a look at the changes announced by the leader of the state Senate in how sexual harassment allegations will be investigated, as well as proposed sanctions against one senator from Los Angeles County.

  • 2018 election
  • California Democrats
  • 2018 U.S. Senate race
Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California
Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California (Mark Wilson / Getty Images)

California Democratic leaders voted Sunday to make it harder for incumbents to win the state party’s endorsement, a move that will present an early test in next year’s U.S. Senate race.

The proposal, written by members of the party’s liberal wing, was approved on a voice vote on the final day of the state party’s executive board meeting in Millbrae. Incumbents will now need 60% of party delegates’ votes to win an endorsement, the same amount challengers need. Until now, incumbents needed a simple majority.

Proponents said the move levels the playing field between incumbents and challengers.


A desire to impeach President Trump inspired Santa Clarita immigration attorney Scott McVarish to run for the Antelope Valley seat held by Republican Rep. Steve Knight.

McVarish, 48, said the most important question that should be asked of congressional candidates in 2018 is “whether to impeach Donald Trump or not, and I am firmly in the camp that he must be impeached.”

McVarish, who lives in Santa Clarita and got his law degree at UCLA, in August left the immigration law firm he founded to start the nonprofit organization Common Sense Democracy. The organization pushes Democrats to campaign on impeaching the president and end gerrymandering, among other causes.

  • California Legislature
  • California Democrats
Sen. Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia)
Sen. Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia) (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

California Democratic Party delegates are circulating a petition to seek the resignations of two state lawmakers who have been accused of sexual misconduct in recent weeks.

“When we remain silent in the face of sexual assault or harassment, we contribute to a culture of impunity for those that use their power to oppress, we send a message to survivors that they do not matter, and we normalize abhorrent behavior, allowing perpetrators to believe that they can act without consequences,” the petition reads. “We must now speak out in support of survivors.”

The petition asks for the resignation of Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra (D-Pacoima) and Sen. Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia). Bocanegra was disciplined eight years ago after a female Capitol staffer accused him of “inappropriate and unwelcome physical contact” while he was also a staffer. Three women have accused Mendoza of inappropriate behavior in recent weeks, something he’s denied.