Today’s Headlines: Will the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol insurrection drive voters’ decisions?
By Elvia Limón and Jason Sanchez
Hello, it’s Tuesday, Sept. 27, and here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:
Will Jan. 6 drive voters’ decisions?
Locally and in the national political landscape, the U.S. Capitol siege on Jan. 6 has been a minor subplot. There have been efforts to elevate it in the public’s consciousness as a do-or-die moment for democracy. Still, there is little sign that the riot, along with the continued denialism about former President Trump’s 2020 loss and the precariousness of future elections, will mobilize people to the polls or determine a swing voter’s pick.
Punditry about this dynamic tends to be blunt: Americans are moving on, Americans don’t care. But the Capitol violence still resonates in subtle but discomfiting ways, invoking strong opinions from voters. Many, though, see those views as distinct from their choice at the ballot box — and they have little appetite to see Jan. 6 become election-season fodder.
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No mandatory kindergarten for California
Gov. Gavin Newsom took a step back from a historic expansion of early education by vetoing one bill that would have made kindergarten mandatory and a second bill that would have required school systems to offer full-day kindergarten. Newsom cited budgetary concerns and called attention to measures for expanded early education and learning overall that he’d already taken.
While expressing disappointment, some advocates also credited Newsom for supporting measures on which they placed a higher priority. These include a massive expansion of transitional kindergarten that, in essence, offers a free — optional — public education in California to 4-year-olds for the first time.
Groups representing the state’s school boards and school administrators expressed some relief that an additional mandate would not be added on top of other new initiatives.
Masks have come off across California, but new dangers are possible
California is entering the fall with coronavirus in retreat. Cases have fallen significantly from the Omicron spike of the spring and summer, and that has allowed government officials to ease both mask rules and recommendations.
But health experts are warning these conditions could change as the weather cools, people head indoors, and new variants emerge. As we head into fall and winter, officials in Los Angeles County say they can’t rule out the return of mask orders if conditions warrant.
Already, there are early hints from Europe that coronavirus cases have start to increase again.
More top coronavirus headlines
- Pfizer asked U.S. regulators to authorize the use of its updated COVID-19 booster shot for children ages 5 to 11.
- The Canadian government said it would no longer require people to wear masks on planes to guard against COVID-19.
Stay up to date on variant developments, case counts and vaccine news with Coronavirus Today.
Election workers are training for the battle against conspiracy theories
Across the country, election clerks have spent the last two years waging an information and public relations battle to restore faith in elections. They’re doing more TV interviews, giving more office tours and retooling their social media presences. They’re keeping up with legislation to overhaul elections and conspiracy theories spreading online. And they’re redoubling their efforts to explain the exhaustive steps they take to prevent fraud and run secure elections.
But as the 2022 primaries showed, some of the key personnel involved — poll workers and poll challengers — still actively doubt the results of the 2020 presidential race, believing baseless allegations of fraud perpetuated by former President Trump and his allies.
Afghanistan’s money is crumbling to pieces
A year after the Taliban careered into power, Afghanistan’s economy remains in crisis. Making matters worse, sanctions and the freeze of Afghan central bank assets deposited mean that credit card and online payments are out.
That has turned Afghanistan into a cash-only economy at a time when capital controls limit how much money you can withdraw from the bank and when no new bills are entering into circulation to replace worn-out ones.
In previous years, the Afghan central bank would withdraw decrepit banknotes and substitute them with new ones printed abroad. But the international sanctions on working with the Taliban have left foreign printers spooked, plunging the country into a liquidity crisis as Afghans contend with a currency that is — literally — falling apart.
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PHOTO OF THE DAY
Southern California is bracing for another September heat wave. A heat warning is in effect for the valleys of L.A. County, and a heat advisory has been issued for the inland coast, including downtown L.A. Both are set to expire at 8 tonight. Although still dangerously warm in some areas, the current heat wave should last only about two days and is at the “lower end” of the historic heat wave earlier this month, according to a forecaster.
Gov. Newsom vetoed a bill aimed at preventing light pollution. The bill would have required outdoor lights installed after Jan. 1 on properties owned, leased or managed by the state to have anti-light-pollution shields, as well as motion sensors or automatic dimming or shut-off functions. Newsom framed his decision to veto the bill primarily as a fiscal one, writing that its costs were “unfunded and potentially significant.”
A federal court says California’s ban on private ICE detention facilities is unconstitutional. The 11-judge appeals court panel found that the 2019 law violated the Constitution’s “Supremacy Clause,” which precludes states from interfering with the enforcement of federal laws. State officials said they were “deeply disappointed” in the decision.
L.A. County’s average gas price hit $5.84 a gallon. After a 98-day decline in gas prices, the trend reversed course last week amid supply issues due to snags at refineries across the West Coast and Midwest, according to AAA. The rise in gas prices comes as Californians who qualify for the gas price relief program prepare to receive one-time payments of up to $1,050 between next month and January.
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Hurricane Ian was gaining intensity on a path to strike Florida. Ian was barreling toward Cuba late Monday and growing stronger while on track to hit Florida’s west coast as a major hurricane as early as Wednesday.
A rocky start for Oregon’s drug decriminalization. When voters passed the state’s pioneering Drug Addiction Treatment and Recovery Act in 2020, the emphasis was on treatment as much as on decriminalizing possession of personal-use amounts of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and other drugs. But Oregon still has among the highest addiction rates in the country. And now the law has become a campaign issue in the upcoming governor’s race.
Japan is split over Shinzo Abe’s state funeral. The hawkish Abe was one of the nation’s most divisive postwar leaders, but it’s the ruling party’s cozy ties with the ultraconservative Unification Church that has fired up much of the opposition to the funeral. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is battling political fallout from his handling of both the links to the church among his party’s lawmakers and the state funeral he says Abe deserves. Here’s why the state funeral is causing so much anger.
Europe preps for a winter energy crisis. Amid the throes of the energy crisis, offices are getting chillier. Statues and historic buildings are going dark. Bakers who can’t afford to heat their ovens are talking about giving up, while fruit and vegetable growers face letting greenhouses stand idle.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
They invented rock’s future. Now they’re taking a well-deserved bow. Roxy Music’s albums gained praise for their inventiveness. The band is credited with pioneering a new wave of art rock. Now the group has reunited for the first time since 2011 for a 50th anniversary tour. The Times spoke with guitarist Phil Manzanera and singer Bryan Ferry ahead of the group’s stop Wednesday at the Kia Forum.
The New Mexico district attorney may charge Alec Baldwin in the “Rust” shooting. In a recent letter to the state’s finance board, Santa Fe Dist. Atty. Mary Carmack-Altwies said up to four people including Baldwin could face criminal charges in connection with the accident last year that killed killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza.
Oprah Winfrey and Apple TV+ have ended a multiyear deal. The partnership, announced in 2018, created original programs for Apple TV+. The change comes as streaming companies are reevaluating what types of content best connect with consumers while making staff changes and cutting costs.
Review: “Blonde” isn’t really about Marilyn Monroe. It’s about making her suffer. Star Ana de Armas is radiantly sympathetic in scene after scene, writers Times film critic Justin Chang; she delivers a strong, intensely felt performance in a movie that doesn’t begin to earn it, that insists on squeezing her sometimes eerie channeling of Monroe’s image into the puniest possible dramatic mold.
Worried about the economy? Demand for these jobs is high and growing. The pandemic pushed many Americans out of their jobs and forced others to rethink theirs. Now, with inflation on everyone’s mind and many economists forecasting some degree of recession in the near future, locking into the best job to ride out the economic uncertainty may seem more appealing. Here are the jobs expected to be in highest demand over the next year in California.
A second Prime sale shows Amazon is nervous about the economy too. Holiday bargain shopping is starting extra early this year. And that could be good news for shoppers, even if it signals slightly worrisome things for the economy. Amazon announced the Prime Early Access Sale, a promotion similar to Prime Day, the July sale held to generate a bonanza of orders and new subscribers. And Wal-Mart and Target have signaled plans to kick off holiday sales earlier.
We’re old, we’re progressive and we vote. The folk wisdom, of course, is that older voters are more conservative — an idea with at least some statistical support. And there’s also the widespread sense that the old hearken back to some more homogenized past. But those assumptions don’t survive a brush with the data, at least not in this election cycle.
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Rashawn Slater is likely done for season, and Joey Bosa dealing with a “significant” injury. Chargers left tackle Slater suffered a torn left biceps in the team’s ugly 38-10 loss to Jacksonville at SoFi Stadium on Sunday, and Pro Bowl edge rusher Bosa has a groin injury. Wide receiver Jalen Guyton is also out for the season after suffering a torn ACL.
The NBA unveiled a patch to honor Bill Russell across the league. The centerpiece of the Celtics dynasty that won 11 championships in 13 years is being honored this season not just for his unmatched success on the court but also a lifetime commitment to civil rights. The NBA has announced that it will retire his No. 6 league-wide, and every player will wear a black No. 6 patch on their jersey.
The CIF cleared lineman T.A. Cunningham to play for Los Alamitos. After a long fight, the junior was granted a hardship waiver by the CIF Southern Section and cleared to play for Los Alamitos High School after transferring from Georgia. At first, the Southern Section blocked Cunningham’s eligibility on the grounds that he didn’t meet the definition of a homeless student, according to a complaint filed by Cunningham’s attorney.
ONLY IN L.A.
Learn as you ride. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a native Angeleno or new to the city, one of the best ways to get to know Los Angeles is on two wheels. Really. Although cars may run this town (there are 8 million of them registered in L.A. County alone), cyclists of all skill levels can still find hundreds of miles of great bike trails. Here are eight breezy bike trails that teach you about L.A.
On this list are beach trails, river trails and an urban trail that takes you past vibrant Mexican American art. All can teach you a bit about Southern California as you ride, especially if you know what to look for. One reminder: Do pull off the bike path if you’re snapping photos of the sights. And friends don’t let friends ride while taking selfies.
FROM THE ARCHIVES
Seventy-six years ago this week, on Sept. 29, 1946, the Rams — newly arrived from Cleveland — played their first NFL game in Los Angeles. Under coach Adam Walsh, they lost to the Philadelphia Eagles, 25-14.
The photo above is of a happier outcome, from a Sept. 6, 1946, charity game against Washington. The Times reported the next day on the Rams’ 16-14 win, which came on a fourth-quarter, 45-yard field goal, thrilling the 68,188 fans in attendance at the Coliseum.
Forty-nine years later, in 1994, the team broke more than a few L.A. hearts when it relocated to St. Louis, where the Rams managed to win a Super Bowl (2000) for the first time in the team’s history. In 2016, it was back to Los Angeles, where the Rams captured a second Super Bowl title in the 2021 season.
Times staff writer Amy Hubbard contributed to this report.
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