FROM Mike Spence
Proposition P Debate Proposition P on next week’s Los Angeles County ballot would raise money for parks, recreation, gang prevention, protection of beaches and maintenance of zoos and museums. It would replace Proposition A, passed in 1992, which runs out next year. But it was drafted behind closed doors and placed on the ballot at the last minute, without any public discussion. Supervisors Antonovich and Ridley-Thomas voted against it. But support came from Gloria Molina, Don Knabe and Zev Yaroslavsky.
The Democrats' Budget, a Budget Nobody Wants Late today -- for the first time in decades -- the state legislature late was on its way to passing a spending plan by the Constitutional deadline , which expires at midnight tonight. That means Senators and Assembly members won't get their pay cut. But Republicans are unhappy because they had no role in the process. Democrats are unhappy, even though the measure passed with all their votes . Governor Brown will have 12 days to sign it or try to work out something better.
Battle for the Soul of the California Republican Party As the GOP’s most likely candidate for president, John McCain hopes to win California this coming November with the coalition of independents and moderates that re-elected Governor Schwarzenegger last year. But California’s Republican Party refused to allow independents to participate in the Super-Tuesday primary. Registration has now dropped to just 33% of those eligible statewide. In a letter to party leaders, Businessman Lawrence K. Dodge said, “[We are] eating our own in public.” He withheld 3-million dollars to pay off the party’s debt in hope that last weekend’s convention in San Francisco would adopt a more moderate platform.
Proposition 1D: The Public Education Facilities Bond Act Proposition 1D on next month's ballot would authorize $10.4 billion in bonds for public schools, community colleges, UC and Cal-State campuses. It was put on the ballot by Governor Schwarzenegger and the legislature to relieve overcrowding by building new schools and repairing older ones. It also provides for earthquake safety and facilities for vocational education and research into energy efficiency.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.