FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Jon Fleischman

Guest Commentary; Andy Pugno, Chief Legal Counsel, Yes on Prop. 8

This in from longtime FR friend Andrew Pugno, who serves as the Chief Legal Counsel for the Yes on Proposition 8 campaign…

Yesterday – less than three months after Kenneth W. Starr and I appeared in the California Supreme Court on behalf of our ProtectMarriage.com Campaign to defend Prop 8 – the Court finally issued its decision… all 185 pages of it! By a 6 to 1 vote, a nearly-unanimous majority of the Supreme Court upheld the vote of the people by which Prop 8 was passed into law to protect traditional marriage in our State Constitution. You can read the decision Read More

Jon Fleischman

Guest Commentary; Andy Pugno, Chief Legal Counsel, Yes on Prop. 8

This in from longtime FR friend Andrew Pugno, who serves as the Chief Legal Counsel for the Yes on Proposition 8 campaign…

Yesterday – less than three months after Kenneth W. Starr and I appeared in the California Supreme Court on behalf of our ProtectMarriage.com Campaign to defend Prop 8 – the Court finally issued its decision… all 185 pages of it!

By a 6 to 1 vote, a nearly-unanimous majority of the Supreme Court upheld the vote of the people by which Prop 8 was passed into law to protect traditional marriage in our State Constitution. You can read the decision hereRead More

BOE Member George Runner

Misplaced Priorities: State Moves to Ban Civilian Water Softeners While Providing Them to Prisons

The Legislature is often accused – and rightfully so – of misplacing priorities. One example of this is Assembly Bill 1366, authored by Assemblyman Mike Feuer, of West Hollywood, which involves banning water softeners.

Specifically, the measure authorizes local water boards to seize water softeners from private residential homes to supposedly solve the problem of water salinity in rivers and streams. This bill is being pushed through the Legislature – despite the fact that a recent water softener ban in Santa Clarita did not do enough to solve the water salinity of the Santa Clara River. The policy did not work at the local level; one can only guess why Mr. Feuer believes it would work on a statewide level.

But here’s the kicker: while the Legislature wants to ban the use of water softeners by law-abiding civilians, the state is currently purchasing large quantities of softeners for the criminally insane! The state has recently purchased large quantities of water softeners for prisons, even as the water board pushed to ban civilians from using these softeners. The State of California is placing the water needs of murderers and rapists over everyday… Read More

Barry Jantz

Thank God for my Government Permit!

Ahhh, Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of Summer! I look forward to the weeks ahead and picking a day to have some of the neighbors and a few friends over for a barbecue.

Thank goodness we have the freedom to invite to our homes those we choose, as often as we want, without having to ask permission of some local agency.

Let’s say for a moment that I like my friends and neighbors enough, and the aroma of a barbecue just as much, to have a weekly get-together at my place? About 15 folks, for regular burgers and dogs, maybe steaks. Bring your own, those who can show, fine, if not, next week, or when you can.

Uhhh, before my wife nips this in the proverbial bud, let’s say she likes the idea?

Okay, that too would be our choice — to have a weekly feast and invite some friends– not the government’s, right? Yep. Again, thank goodness.

Now say that instead of a bbq, it’s a weekly book club. About 15 of us, reading the same book on our own, then getting together at my house regularly to discuss it. The Da Vinci Code, perhaps. Whatever.

Again, thank goodness for… Read More

James V. Lacy

More on Prop. 8 decision

Thanks to Meredith Turney for her brief post on the great decision today from the California Supreme Court upholding Proposition 8. Per an early a.m. exchange with our esteemed publisher, I will throw in a few lines of legal mumbo jumbo to fill-out the analysis of today’s solid legal victory for the sanctity of marriage in California.

First of all, kudos to SenateRepublican Leader Dennis Hollingsworth for being an Intervener in the case. This is a victoryfor Dennis too and thank you for sticking your neck out, Senator!!! Also, as a PepperdineLaw alum, I must mention our main man, the Honorable Ken Starr, Dean of Pepperdine Law School, who appearedfor the Interveners. High-five to Jim Sweeney, a great lawyer in Sacramento, who assisted. And the CA Attorney General’s office, who had to represent the good guys. And apparently did a good job.

A sad face goes to the National Center for Lesbian Rights which lost the case. (Aren’t they involved in the Jeff Miller recall?).

The decision of the Supreme Court today essentially overturns a prior decision of the majority of the California Supreme… Read More

Meredith Turney

Breaking: CA Supreme Court Upholds Proposition 8

The California Supreme Court has ruled 6-1 that Proposition 8 was a valid amendment, rather than revision, to the state constitution. However, in a concession to Proposition 8 opponents, the 18,000 same-sex marriages that occurred last summer will remain "legal.” The web site for the opinion has been so overwhelmed that even thirty minutes after its release, many are still unable to read the opinion. This is certainly a victory for the democratic process here in California. More analysis from FR will follow…Read More

Bill Leonard

Just Pass It

The February budget deal has fallen apart with a heavy dose of economic reality. The May vote of the people has rejected tax increases and borrowing. The state’s constitutional officers and the Legislative Analyst are reporting that borrowing is impossible without a balanced budget. And the Governor, to his credit, is proposing a budget package that is almost entirely cuts in spending. Now some of the cuts are one-time, which merely postpones the day of reckoning, and some of the ‘cuts’ are actually fee increases, which hit Californians in the pocketbook.

Nevertheless, his plan works, especially now without the riskiest borrowing. The Legislature would be wise to pass it this week. Let me advise legislators that the pain and pressures are not going to get any better. In fact, if the Legislature seriously considers rejecting any one of the cut items, then they have the burden to find another cut of equal value and then tell that interest group that their spending is less important.

Pass the Schwarzenegger budget. He has accepted the reality of our economic times clashing with our spending excesses. No amount of tinkering will… Read More

Jon Fleischman

Today’s Commentary: Cigarette Tax Hike Proposal Begs The Question — Do Taxfighters Stand With Big Business, Industry When They Backed Income, Sales Taxes?

Sacramento Democrats, desperate to avoid the kind of reduction in the size and scope of state government in California that are needed to balance the state’s books, are unbelievably still pursuing tax increases as a "solution" to chronic overspending, and a tax code that is predictably volatile as it disproportionately taxes the income of California’s wealthiest citizens.

In yesterday’s Los Angeles Times there is a story about how Democrats are supportive of a $1.50 per pack increase in cigarettes which, according to their analysis, would result in a $1.2 billion increase in tobacco tax revenues to the state’s general fund.

This is a stupid idea. As we have pointed out many times, Californians are among the most overtaxed people in the entire country, and the last thing we need is higher taxes, frankly, on anything. Never mind the fact that this takes us back down the path of the "sin tax" where all-knowing politicians in Sacramento hoist taxes on activities that they decide are "bad" for our collective community. Ironically, of course, taxes like these… Read More

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