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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Parallel Universe: Retailers Support Minimum Wage Hike

Governor Schwarzenegger wants to raise the minimum wage in California and Bill Dombrowski a sorry excuse for a retail industry rep supports the idea.

I feel like we have entered a parallel universe. The lone sane voice on the issue is Senate Minority Leader Dick Ackerman who gets the big picture: Forced higher wages mean fewer jobs.

For those who think this is the latest in a string of job-killing proposals being spearheaded by new COS Susan Kennedy, you may be right.

I have suggested before that the governor’s role is in many ways reduced to the opportunistic veto. He could surely veto any attempt to raise the minimum wage. Why he is looking to compromise on this is unclear. Even more bizarre is the retail industry’s acquiescence.… Read More

Dazed And Confused

During the rush rush of Christmas for this single dad, I missed bringing you one of the strangest things I’ve seen happen up in those wacky halls of the Yolo County Board of Supervisors.

We’ve heard they sued to take the land from the land owners of the Conaway Ranch. We know they sued the city of Woodland over the city’s decision to bring a Target store and an automall to their town. Now I get to tell you that they have decided to ban Christmas caroling within County buildings because, according to Supervisor Frank Sieferman, itis a"a knee-jerk reaction to our litigious society."

With all of the important issues facing a growing county, these folks threaten one of our cultural traditions because people sue each other too much.

I’m dazed. Sieferman is confused.Sanity can be found hereRead More

Barry Jantz

SDUT Blasts Reiner

This morning’s San Diego Union-Tribune calls Rob Reiner unethical and charges him with abuse of power. Check these blurbs:

Reiner and his allies have abandoned any claim to the moral high ground. Their role in the misuse of taxpayer dollars for what is little more than promotion of Reiner’s latest crusade – a 2006 initiative to provide free preschool to all the state’s 4-year-olds – is far more sleazy than noble … The next time you read a gushy article about Reiner, the rich show-biz mogul who so cares about kids, feel free to groan. He may care about kids, but he doesn’t give a rip about ethics.

Read the complete editorial here. And, have a great New Year!Read More

Matthew J. Cunningham

OC Republicans Threaten Democrat Dominance In Central OC

An Orange County Register article today heralds the quiet but significant progress the OC Republican Party has made in narrowing the registration gap in central Orange County.

Since launching the Voter Registration Project two years ago (funded by the New Majority) Republican registration is within 1.7% in the 34th Senate District, 4.4% in the Loretta Sanchez’s district, and 9.8% in the 69th Assembly District.

Those numbers represent a dramatic improvement from the registration deficit from November 1998, the high-water mark of Democratic dominance in central OC. At that time, the Dems has a 10.6% advantage in the 34th SD, 14.2% in the 47th CD, and 19.6% in the 69th CD.

As result, the GOP has an excellent shot at taking the 34th SD, especially if the politically wounded Tom Umberg is the nominee. Loretta Sanchez’s days of sending out strange Christmas cards will be numbered once the GOP fields a credible candidate like Santa Ana Councilman… Read More

Mike Spence

The Last Days in Hollywood

This yearhas been a year of turmoil, infighting, budget problems, controversial staff changes and changing focus. And I’m not talking about the Governor’s office! I’m talking about a church, but not any church. This is oneof the most famous churches in Los Angeles.

First Hollywood Presbyterian is no ordinary church. It has a storied history that includes the start of the Billy Graham Ministries andserved as the pulpitfor current U.S. Senate Chaplain Lloyd Ogilvie.Although considered a "liberal" denomination. There was always a soft spot among more conservative Christians for Hollywood Presbyterian because of its history and location. To have a high profile church in a place like Hollywood was a always a good thing.

The LA Weekly has a decent, if little liberal view of the problems facing this Los Angeleslandmark. See it here.Read More

Barry Jantz

SD City Beat Looks Back at 2005

This morning the anonymous (but great) San Diego Politics Blog picked up on the just-published San DiegoCityBeat review of 2005 in politics. I don’t typically go out of my way to find a copy of City Beat, avery left-leaning (heck, socialist) tabloid, but when I run across it I pick it up, at least to see which Republicans they’re bashing that week … and which GOP moderates are labeled as right-wing fascists.

This week’s CityBeat piece by David Rolland, "HEY NINETEEN: Recalling the newsmakers of 2005—oh, how they entertained us," does make for fun reading … as long as you take some of it with a grain of salt.

To be sure, San Diego area politics has most assuredly provided some newsmakers this past year … stripper-gate and Duke Cunningham alone were enough for a mouthful, but then throw in a few other ongoing scandals, crises and mayoral elections… there’s enough… Read More

Jon Fleischman

Flash’s 2006 Predictions

I recently was queried by the anonymous "Pete St. John," proprietor of the California Campaigns blog, asking me for six political predictions for 2006. I had some fun with it, but my answers are below. Click through to St. John’s site to see others.

I invite the FR Blog Team, as time permits, to make some predictions for 2006 on this site!

FLASH’S 2006 PREDICTIONS 1) Major political donors, outraged by the amount of their money going into the pockets of consultants, will tie their donations to assurance that the money will go to voter contact, not to the vacation homes of well-connected insiders. 2) The California State Supreme Court will throw out Proposition 22, making gay-marriage a huge issue going into the November elections. 3) Proposals for massiveRead More

Jon Fleischman

FR makes the NY Times on Susan Kennedy hire…

While I am off on vacation, I am still trying to find fun things to post to the blog — and I couldn’t resist this article by Sarah Kershaw in today’s New York Times.. Not only because it cites the FlashReport in the opening paragraphs, but because it highlights the fact that there is still a lot of unrest and unhappiness with Gray Davis’ former Deputy Chief of Staff, Susan Kennedy, (she is also a former Executive Director of the State Democrat Party) becoming Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Chief of Staff. The Governor has stated repeatedly (and told me directly) that Kennedy has been hired to implement his vision, not the other way around. But as conservative guru Morton Blackwell says, personnel IS policy. Well, I have spoken plenty about my unhappiness and discomfort with the Kennedy hire, but check out this article. You can read the post cited in the first paragraph here.

DemocratRead More

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