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Governor Brown says he'll sign a budget with massive cuts and nothing more than the hope that economic recovery will bring new revenues.  If that doesn't happen, more cuts will be triggered.  What does that mean for education, social services, the justice system and the quality of life in California?  Is it really a matter of financial distress—or a very expensive brand of partisan politics? Also, Major League Baseball and Dodgers' owner Frank McCourt face off in bankruptcy court. On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, the US Supreme Court, business and the First Amendment.

Banner image: Speaker John Pérez with Senator Mark DeSaulnier and Assemblyman Mike Feuer discuss the reform package proposed by Democrats in the Assembly and Senate

Making News MLB Slams Dodgers Bankruptcy Filing 7 MIN, 15 SEC

After Frank McCourt took the Dodgers into bankruptcy yesterday, Major League Baseball said he was "pursuing his own financial interests at the expense of the club." But McCourt got a break today, when lawyers for both sides agreed he can use a big loan to make payroll and stay in control for at least another month. Molly Knight reports for ESPN the Magazine.

Molly Knight, ESPN the Magazine (@molly_knight)

Main Topic Politics and Finance in a World-Class Economy 20 MIN, 24 SEC

With a majority vote in the legislature, Democrats can pass a budget, but Republicans can prevent the two-thirds required to raise taxes. The failure to come up with a balanced plan by last week's constitutional deadline means that Senators and Assembly members are not being paid. Now the Democrats and Governor Brown have agreed on a plan based in part on revenues that might never materialize. Most of the cuts to social services were made a couple of months ago. But they could go deeper. If the economy doesn't provide the new revenues the budget depends on, K-12 education will be allowed to drop one week of school. Is this really a state too poor to pay its bills, or is this all about politics? We hear more about what the new budget could mean for the quality of life in California.

Dan Walters, Sacramento Bee (@WaltersBee)
Stephen Levy, Center for Continuing Study of the California Economy
Bill Habermehl, Orange County Department of Education
Jean Ross, California Budget Project

Main Topic The Supreme Court: Big Business and the First Amendment 24 MIN, 40 SEC

As the US Supreme Court recessed this week until next October, John Roberts completed his sixth term as Chief Justice of the United States. He continued to lead the court in a conservative direction, and this was a good term for big business, including Wal-Mart, AT&T and power companies. It was also a term dominated by the First Amendment. Is the Court more business-friendly under Roberts and the conservative majority? Is it liberal when it comes to the First Amendment?

Adam Liptak, New York Times (@adamliptak)
Robert Peck, Center for Constitutional Litigation
Jonathan H. Adler, Case Western Reserve University (@jadler1969)
Nelson Lichtenstein, University of California, Santa Barbara (@UCSBHistory)
Arn Pearson, Common Cause

The Retail Revolution

Nelson Lichtenstein

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