In 1996, California voters approved an "open primary," meaning that anybody could cast a ballot in any primary election of his or her choice. The US Supreme Court threw that out, saying it violated party members' "freedom of association." Proposition 62 on next month's ballot essentially eliminates party primaries altogether, providing that the top two candidates in the first round face each other in the general election, even if they're from the same party. It would apply to statewide races, the Legislature and Congress, but not to presidential primaries, which would remain partisan. What's the best way to give voters more choices, make government more pragmatic, and elected officials more accountable? Warren Olney hears from former officials of the California Republican Party on both sides of the issue.
- Making News: Superman, Stem Cell Research Advocate Christopher Reeve Dies
With the death yesterday of 52 year-old Christopher Reeve, a brave voice has been silenced. The Juilliard-trained actor was a long-time champion of political and social causes, becoming more recently a fervent advocate of stem cell research who never lost hope in "the possibilities of the future." Michael Speier, managing editor of Daily Variety, has more on the comic book hero who became a real life hero.
- Reporter's Notebook: LA Board of Education's Final Vote on Ambassador Hotel
Presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy was killed at the Ambassador Hotel in 1968. The hotel was shut down 21 years later. In 2001, the LA Unified School District bought it, hoping to use the property to house 3800 kids in grades K-12, who have to be bussed out of the neighborhood where they live. Tomorrow, the School Board is scheduled to finally decide how much of the complex to tear down and how much to save. Cara Mia DiMassa is following the story for the LA Times.
Christopher Reeve Paralysis Resource Center
Variety article on Christopher Reeve
Open Elections, Primaries (Prop 62)
Election Rights of Political Parties (Prop 60)
LAUSD's Ambassador Hotel Project
LA Conservancy on the Ambassador Hotel
LA Times article on David Tokofsky's last-minute proposal to save Ambassador Hotel