FROM Steve Harmon
Brown Signs Budgets Cuts, Faces Resistance on Tax Measure Jerry Brown today signed $14 billion in budget cuts , including $5.8 billion in social services and support for the developmentally disabled and the mentally ill. But, he says, that's not the end of the story. The Governor reminded voters that the state still faces making many more drastic cuts if additional revenue is not found. We get details on today's events and a preview of what's to come.
Gubernatorial Politics in California Half of all adult Californians are worried that they or somebody in the family will lose their job next year. Sixty-five percent are afraid they won't have the money to pay the rent or the mortgage. That's according to the latest survey by the Public Policy Institute of California. President Mark Baldassare says, "Voters have more immediate concerns than who is going to be the next governor." But the primary contests are just six months away, so we're duty bound to report what the same poll showed about three Republican candidates and one Democrat who has yet to announce. Steve Poizner (R) Meg Whitman (R) Tom Campbell (R) Jerry Brown (D)
How Did California Become Such a Dysfunctional State? Governor Schwarzenegger and the Legislature are in the midst of re-writing the social contract, cutting education and services to poor children, the elderly, the blind and disabled. Debates over those measures are being held in public. Big tax cuts for major corporations have already been made, but they were negotiated in private. It’s not only because of the economic decline. How did it happen in the eighth largest economy in the world, a place where living standards have attracted millions of immigrants from almost every other country?
A Thaw Develops in Budget Negotiations Late last week, some California Republican legislators took a heavy political beating for sounding as if they'd consider an increase in taxes. Today, it appears the Democrats may be ready to make some concessions. Steve Harmon is reading the signals in Sacramento for the Contra Costa Times .
Schwarzenegger's Double-Digit Lead over Angelides Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has increased his lead over Treasurer Phil Angelides with less than six weeks until election day. The Field Poll has Schwarzenegger 10 points ahead. The Public Policy Institute of California gives him a 17-point lead.
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
"Tough on crime" rhetoric sees a revival at Sessions' DOJ The pendulum swings between treatment-focused approaches to drug abuse and tough law enforcement. Now, after years of Obama-era "reforms," President Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions wants local police freed from federal restrictions to fight another "war on drugs."