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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Jon Fleischman

Orange County Supervisors Reject Term Limits Weakening Scam

I have been good friends with John Moorlach for over twenty years, from before he successfully predicted the County’s bankruptcy which led to his stepping away from his private sector job as a Certified Public Accountant and into what has been many years of great public service first as our County Treasurer, and now as a Supervisor. While I hold the Supervisor in very high esteem, and agree with most of the things he tries to accomplish, his latest effort to try and weaken our county’s term limits for Supervisor, with a plan to mislead the voters, was totally outrageous and I applaud a majority of Moorlach’s colleagues for voting it down at yesterday’s meeting of the Orange County Board of Supervisors.

The draft ordinance that had been brought forward by Moorlach would have, if presented to and passed by the voters, changed the current limit of two consecutive four-year terms to a limit of three terms, with a lifetime ban. Unfortunately the measure was very overtly written to allow all of the current Supervisors, with the exception of Bill Campbell who hits term limits this year, to have an additional term in office. That said, I have spoken… Read More

Ron Nehring

Santorum’s Michigan “Sneak Attack” Validates CRP’s Closed Presidential Primary

In 2007 a small group of liberal Republicans attempted to pressure me and my fellow state party leaders to open California’s Republican primary to non-Republican voters. Such a move has been tried in the past by those who want to create a playing field tilted away from conservative candidates.

Despite the pressure, threats, and even clumsy attempts to get some Republican donors involved, we refused. Predictably, liberal Sacramento pundits criticized the California Republican Party for its lack of enlightened thinking by keeping the Republican primary…Republican.

Fast forward to last night’s vote in Michigan. Anxious to reverse his slide in the polls, Rick Santorum used robocalls encouraging non-Republicans to vote in the Republican primary to try and pull an upset over Mitt Romney. Unlike California, Michigan invites such game-playing by permitting non-Republicans to participate in the Republican nominating contest. Santorum, who is I’m sure anathema to every single person involved in the failed 2007 attempt to open the California Republican primary, used the open primary almost… Read More

Richard Rider

California traffic fines are INCREDIBLY low — honest! But . . .

Here’s a trick question: How much is the driving fine in California for a “rolling stop”? (Counterintuitive hint: It’s cheap!)

The answer?

$35. Yes, that is correct.

The trick part of the question? I said “fine.” Not “ticket,” or total cost.

Add on to the $35 fine the many “fees” now imposed by California courts, and the ticket you must pay is about $235. Plus a $65 fee if you want to go to “traffic school” to remove the ding on your driving record.

And that $65 does NOT pay for the school itself — it’s just another state fee — you pay for the driving school IN ADDITION to paying the driving school fee.

Hence on such minor infractions, our state and local governments rake in either $235 or (more often) $300. Boss Hogg of Hazzard County would be green with envy.

In California, red light camera tickets are $480. The second highest state is $250. Most are around $100.… Read More

Meredith Turney

Laws & Disorder in the State Legislature

Sometimes I feel like Democrats in the state legislature are producing a decades-long episode of Law & Order—er, make that Laws & Disorder. Just take a look at the thousands of bills introduced every year and it appears they were literally ripped from news headlines–just as Law & Order plot lines often are. Democrats’ bills make the strongest argument for a part-time legislature. They have way too much time on their hands and therefore just pick up a newspaper, read about some story and decide there ought to be a law.

The latest and most ridiculous example of this is Assemblywoman Norma Torres’ bill to make sure those who bring a firearm to the airport aren’t just detained and ticketed, but arrested. Her legislation is in direct response to Assemblyman Tim Donnelly’s Ontario Airport incident in which he accidentally brought his pistol to the airport. Granted, in this TSA-dominated day and age, that was not a smart move on Donnelly’s part. But accidents do happen.… Read More

Jon Fleischman

Merged California YR’s Thrive; McCarthy Minions Lose In Court, Again

I was on hand back in the early 1990’s when the a schism occurred within the Young Republicans in this state. Rather than suffer the loss of control of the California Young Republicans, then Congressman Bill Thomas, his protégé Kevin McCarthy (who would go on to take Thomas’ seat in Congress over a decade later), and their allies cheated and thusly a larger number of activists fled the CYR’s to start their own organization, the Young Republican Federation of California. And so for fifteen years there were two YR groups in California — the Thomas/McCarthy controlled CYR’s that stayed small and was controlled from the top-down, and the YRFC which continued through the entire “split” to demonstrate themselves as the “real deal” — a bottom-up activist group that made it’s mark through walking precincts, registering voters and electing conservatives to office. From time to time, the feud between the two groups would bubble up to the California Republican Party Conventions.

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Richard Rider

Gov. Brown overestimates CA tax revenues by $6.5 billion [feign surprise here]

No surprise for my readers, but the Jerry Brown La-La Land budget revenue projections come true only in Disney’s Fantasyland — if there! The Legislative Analyst’s Office says Governor Brown is billions and billions of dollars off — guess which way.

Below is the “hot off the press” article, but consider this comment I added first:

The eagerly awaited Facebook California capital gains tax windfall is largely illusionary. We are talking about folks who find themselves with a ONE-TIME capital gain windfall of many millions. If they get ANY tax advice at all, they will consider relocating out the state to make the sale. Indeed, they only have to live outside CA for over HALF a calendar year to qualify (well, there are other hoops like registration, etc. — but the big one is moving).

If a Facebook computer programmer takes a one-time $10 million capital gain in California, he/she will pay about $1,000,000 extra in state income tax. If Brown’s retroactive tax increase passes, he would pay about $1.2 million. If the union tax increase passes, he would pay over $1.5 million in tax.Read More

Jon Fleischman

Showdown at the State Senate Corral

This afternoon is the only scheduled State Senate floor session before the Governor’s nomination of CSU Board of Trustees President Herb Carter reaches it’s one year anniversary, and Carter’s appointment will expire. Before Wednesday the State Senate needs to bring up his confirmation vote which must pass by a two-thirds vote. The Los Angeles Times has a solid write up on it here.

Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff has made the opposition to Carter’s reconfirmation his first line drawn in the sand, and this vote will be an indicator of his ability to unify his caucus since if all of… Read More

Jon Fleischman

State GOP Adopts Conservative 2012-2016 Platform

It’s a wrap. The 2012 California Republican Party Spring Convention, held on the San Francisco Bay Area peninsula, is over. As is typical of these semi-annual confabs, I give them my all – and they take all I have to give and more. We’ll pen a post-convention write with an overview of the highlights for publication as early as tomorrow morning. That having been said, I wanted to share with you that at the general session of the convention, by an overwhelming voice vote, the delegates to the convention adopted the 2012-2016 CRP Platform. I am very pleased to share that the document that was approved, while far from ideal, is more or less a re-adoption of the conservative platform document that we adopted back in 2008. I could go on at length about what is in the final document, but instead I will attach it here for you to read.

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