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Will Proposition 14 on next Tuesday's ballot open up state politics or make it even harder to challenge Republicans and Democrats?  Do a couple of long-shot candidates have a chance to buck their own party in campaigns against Congresswoman Jane Harman and US Senator Barbara Boxer?  On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, President Karzai's effort at reaching out to the Taliban may have failed before it began. We update this week's "peace jirga" with 1600 tribal leaders and politicians. Is it building support for Karzai's government? Will it make any difference for US soldiers?

Making News Prop 14: Increased Right to Participate in Primaries 9 MIN, 29 SEC

A radio spot for Proposition 14 on the ballot claims the measure would reduce "the influence of the major parties which are now under the control of special interests." Sure enough, Republican and Democratic leaders — who disagree on everything else — have jointly raised $200,000 to defeat it. Bob Stern is President of the nonprofit Center for Governmental Studies.

Bob Stern, Center for Governmental Studies

Main Topic Primary Politics Five Days before a Statewide Election 7 MIN, 57 SEC

Four years ago, high school teacher Marcy Winograd moved from Pacific Palisades to Marina del Rey to challenge eight-term Congresswoman Jane Harman in the Democratic Primary. Winograd got 38% of the vote, and this year she's back again.  Harmon has taken her seriously enough to run an attack ad on local TV. Although Congresswoman Harman declined our invitation to appear, challenger Winograd joins us.

Marcy Winograd, English Teacher at Crenshaw High School

Reporter's Notebook Senate Candidate Mickey Kaus, Tilting at Windmills? 8 MIN, 6 SEC

For dinner with President Obama and California's US Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrats spent $35,000 a couple. That's just about the total amount Mickey Kaus has raised for his primary campaign against Boxer, plus $7,000 of his own money. It's not much, but enough to produce one TV commercial. Senator Boxer declined our invitation to appear, but Mickey Kaus, best known for his blog Kausfiles on Slate.com, joins us.

Mickey Kaus, Political Commentator and Author (@kausmickey)

Main Topic Karzai Convenes Peace Jirga, Reaches Out to the Taliban 26 MIN, 32 SEC

Yesterday, as he opened his "peace jirga," Afghan President Hamid Karzai spoke to 1600 handpicked tribal leaders and politicians.  He addressed the Taliban directly, "Make peace with me and there will be no need for foreigners here."  Before Karzai finished speaking, a rocket exploded nearby, and security forces fought off two attempted suicide bombers.

Alissa Johannsen Rubin, New York Times (@alissanyt)
Peter Galbraith, gubernatorial candidate and former diplomat (@GalbraithforVT)
Michael O'Hanlon, Brookings Institution (@MichaelEOHanlon)
Hasan-Askari Rizvi, Professor Emeritus of Political Science, University of Punjab

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