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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Supervisor Brad Mitzelfelt

59th AD: Adams Buoyed As Desert Rival Quits

The playing field in the 59th Assemblyelection has tilted slightly toward the High Desert end of the district. One of the two major desert-area candidates this morning dropped out of the race to replace termed-out Assemblyman Dennis Mountjoy in the June 2006 primary. Todd Turoci, an attorney and son of a former county supervisor, announced that he’s bowing out because he’s concerned about being a "part-time" father for the next six years. No disrespect to Mr. Turoci or his stated noble purpose, but isn’t it curious that, according to his press release, the idea of Assembly life being hard on a single-parent family only just recently swayed his decision when it dawned on him he might actually win the election? "Based on recent polling, I am convinced that the race is winnable and that’s what made me re-evaluate the time I would be taking away from my kids," Turoci said. Although Turoci’s fundraising and endorsements had been lacking somewhat, and a few early campaign gaffes aside, his well-recognized name on the ballot could have proven problematic for the other desert candidate,… Read More

Duane Dichiara

San Diego Mayoral TV Up

In the race for San Diego Mayor Republican Sanders has been on TV several days pretty heavy. You can see the ads at www.jerrysandersformayor.com (or if you are in San Diego just turn your TV to something other than Jerry Springer). Tom Sheppard is the consultant on the Sanders campaign. The most recent ad goes into Donna Frye’s proposal for a billion-some-odd tax increase. Right off the bat, I’m going to guess that not too many voters want to increase the sales tax in order to allow various non-public safety city workers to retire with a million dollar check they get from double-dipping for five years. A little mail on both sides… one particularly good piece from Sheppard that I’l try to post in a couple days. Frye does not appear to be on TV… or she misses me by not buying the coveted “Simpons” or “The Office” time slots.… Read More

Jon Fleischman

Winning the war – but losing the animation battle…

This special election is extremely important. The reforms being pushed by Governor Schwarzenegger are critical — whether reforming teacher tenure, restructuring our state finance and budget process, giving public employee union members say over how their dollars are spent, or ensuring that we have fair legislative districts in the state. The Schwarzenegger Team is to be commended for bringing this debate to the voters and running a strong closing effort as we approach election day.

That said, I am afraid to say that at this point, we are going to have to say that the special interests who have a grip on the heart of California, and are squeezing it dead, they have won at least one minor skermish – the cartoon battle.

A few weeks ago, the Join Arnold team put out a short animated movie – it is a spoof on the union bosses literally shaking down a teacher to line their political coffers. You can see the animination here.

Shortly after this, the Angelides… Read More

Mike Spence

Simon’s Departure From Race Leaves Big Hole

Big News. Bill Simon is leaving the race for State Treasurer. The Sac Bee has the story here. He had money, name ID and a solid base. This leaves a gaping hole in the GOP Primary. Now, the two top candidates are Keith Richman and Claude Parrish.

Keith Richman is a state Assemblyman from the San Fernando Valley. He is way out of any type of GOP mainstream. He is the only Republican Lawmaker that won’t support Prop. 73. See more on that here. On fiscal issues he voted for the Gray Davis budgets but not Arnold’s. Why? They didn’t have tax increases. Does the Republican Party want a fiscal liberal as its’ standard-bearer in this kind of race?

Claude Parrish is on the Board of Equalization representing Southern California. I guess now he is theconservative candidate. He has filled outRead More

Jon Fleischman

Bill Simon drops bid for State Treasurer

Well respected conservative and businessman Bill Simon has quietly told his supporters that he has decided not to run for California State Treasurere in 2006 (props to Dan Weintraub, who broke this news).

An excerpt of the letter from Simon to his supporters said:

"I am writing to tell you about a difficult and important decision I have made. Since you have honored me with your support, I wanted to let you know about it before any public announcement. . . It came only after a great deal of soul-searching and prayer. It was not a political decision, but a personal one. At this time of my life, as a father of four young adults, it has become increasingly clear that my active participation is needed in their daily lives. As a result of the attention they deserve, I would not realistically be able to devote the all encompassing time and energy to another statewide political campaign during the 2006 election cycle." (source: … Read More

Jennifer Nelson

There’s No Great Pumpkin Patch in SF, Charlie Brown

San Francisco city government never fails to amaze me.

This morning, the local news carried a story about how a "beloved" pumpkin patch–one of only two in the city–has been closed down because of a permitting dispute. Apparently, neighbors have complained about the size of a shed on the land that serves as the Great Pumpkin Patch’s haunted house. The business owner says that the size of the shed was reduced to comply with permitting rules, but an appeal was filed to revoke her permit.

Here’s the kicker: the appeal hearing is scheduled for December 7th–well after Halloween. Don’t you think that city management could find a way to expedite the hearing to allow a small business to remain operating and give city kids a place to get their pumpkins… Read More

Jon Fleischman

Weintraub does it right, Scully does too! Canciamilla gets props!

News Roundup: FORUM IN THE EASTBAYThere is nothing that our friends in the media like more than a spectacle – and that is what they got yesterday at a townhall forum held at the Lesher Center in Walnut Creek, in the East Bay Area. While the format was a little goofy (it was a ‘debate’ but the proponent [Governator] and opponents [State Senate President Don Perata, and the Chief of the Nurses Union, Rose Ann DeMoro] never actually shared the stage at the same time.

The general concensus is that the Governor actually did quite well in this format, and that his opponents very much came across as trying to defend the status quo. FR friend and blogger extraordinaire Dan Weintraub of the Sacramento Bee actually reported on the event ‘live’ on his blog. While there are a dozen (or more) stories on the FlashReport website on this debate, it is… Read More

Dan Schnur

A Good Night for Arnold — But Make It Better

Todd Harris, who is a campaign spokesman for the Schwarzenegger initiative committee, has spent most of the year playing the role originated by Kevin Bacon in the closing minutes of "Animal House". As John Belushi and his fellow Deltas wreaked havoc on their school’s homecoming parade and destroyed a small town, Bacon played a young pledge whose responsibility was traffic and crowd control for the parade. The lasting image of Bacon’s first film role is him jumping up and down , frantically repeating the phrase "Remain calm. All is well", even as chaos descended around him.

After the governor and his opponents completed their participation in last night’s campaign forum in Walnut Creek, media coverage shows that Harris was on message, proclaiming that the evening had been a great success for Schwarzenegger. After months of being forced to attempt to spin the unspinnable, Harris was right. His boss won hands down.

Before the event had even concluded, armchair analysts were complaining that "nothing… Read More

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