Politics

MATT STRABONE LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN FOR ASSESSOR/RECORDER/COUNTY CLERK

 

East County News Service

April 9, 2017 (San Diego) -- San Diego nonprofit attorney and business owner Matt Strabone has announced his candidacy for Assessor / Recorder / County Clerk centered around ethics and improved records access.

“Ours is a campaign of new ideas and new energy. We will ensure that the Assessor/Recorder/Clerk’s office serves all people of our county equally and treats everyone fairly," he said. "From impartial and fair property tax assessment to ensuring that you can quickly and easily access your own public records and documents, our primary commitment will always be to provide excellent customer service to everyone,” Strabone states.

FEINSTEIN AND ISSA INTRODUCE BILL TO BAN CLUSTER MUNITIONS

 

East County News Service

Photo: Demonstrators at the May 2008 Dublin Diplomatic Conference on Cluster Munitions that produced the Convention on Cluster Munitions. (cc by pxkls on Flickr)

April 8,2017 (San Diego) -- Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has introduced the Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act, a bill to restrict the use and export of dangerous cluster munitions. Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Vista) is cosponsor of a companion bill in the House.

CITIES REBEL AGAINST STATE BILL TO INCREASE SAN DIEGO’S CLOUT ON SANDAG, TAKING POWER AWAY FROM OUR REGION’S SMALLER CITIES AND THE COUNTY

 

La Mesa to vote April 11 on resolution to oppose AB 805

By Miriam Raftery

April 8, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Elected leaders in numerous local cities are gearing up to oppose a state bill that critics warn weaken the voices and voting power of smaller cities on the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), as well as the Metropolitan Transit System and North County Transit District.  The bill gives more power to the city of San Diego, which critics contend will mean not enough clout by representatives from the county or other cities in the region to pass, block, or even place items on the agenda.

FILMMAKER TO DOCUMENT “RACE TO REPLACE DUNCAN HUNTER”

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 7, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – A pack of candidates are lining up to challenge Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) for the 50th Congressional seat.  Now, filmmaker  Mike Garcia, has announced that he is producing a documentary titled “The Race to Replace Duncan Hunter.”

Hear our interview with Garcia, originally aired on KNSJ radio, by clicking the orange audio link.  Garcia talked about his vision for the film and what key issue he believes could flip this red district blue in 2018—or sooner, should there be a special election if the seat becomes vacant.

Hunter is viewed as vulnerable for the first time in this conservative-leaning district, since he is under investigation by the Justice Department for using some $60,000 of campaign funds for personal expenses.

Audio: 

CONGRESSMAN ISSA COAUTHORS BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION TO PROVIDE FORMERLY INCARCERATED AMERICANS A FAIR CHANCE AT FEDERAL EMPLOYMENT

 

East County News Service

April 7, 2017 (San Diego) -- Reps. Darrell Issa, former Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, have introduced the bipartisan, bicameral Fair Chance Act that would give formerly incarcerated Americans a fair chance at obtaining employment with the federal government.  Senator Booker introduced a companion bill in the Senate.

76% OF U.S. VOTERS ARE CONCERNED OVER CLIMATE CHANGE, OPPOSITION TO WALL GROWS, BUT HEALTHCARE IS #1 CONCERN

 

East County News Service

April 7, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – A new national poll by Quinnipiac University has found that over three-fourths of American voters surveyed are concerned about climate change, more than two-thirds oppose building a wall on the Mexican border, and when asked to name the biggest problem facing America, voters’ number one answer was healthcare.

LORENA GONZALEZ FLETCHER MARKS EQUAL PAY DAY WITH GENDER PAY GAP TRANSPARENCY ACT

 

East County News Service

April 7, 2017 (San Diego) -- Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego) marked Equal Pay Day on Tuesday by announcing her new legislation that will require large companies to publicly disclose data on the gender pay gap between their male and female employees. Assembly Bill 1209, the Gender Pay Gap Transparency Act, has been named a top priority for the Stronger California women’s advocacy coalition for the 2017 legislative session.   

CALIF. BILL WOULD BE FIRST TO BAN TEFLON-LIKE CHEMICALS FROM FAST FOOD WRAPPERS

 

East County News Service

April 7, 2017 (Sacramento) -- Legislation introduced this week would make California the first state to ban perfluorinated chemicals, or PFCs, from fast food wrappers and takeout containers.

The bill, AB 958 by Assembly Member Phil Ting of San Francisco, would prohibit the use of the entire class of PFCs in sandwich and pastry wrappers, french fry bags, pizza boxes, and other paper and paperboard used to serve food. It is co-sponsored by the Environmental Working Group and Clean Water Action.

CONGRESSWOMAN SUSAN DAVIS LEADS 206 HOUSE MEMBERS IN CALL TO INCREASE FEDERAL FUNDING FOR MEDICAL RESEARCH

 

East County News Service

April 7, 2017 (Washington, D.C.) - As President Trump calls for dramatic cuts to life-saving medical research, Congresswoman Susan Davis (CA-53) led a bipartisan group of House members in an effort to increase the budget for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Davis’s letter to House appropriators urges $36 billion for medical research and was signed by 206 members of the House. Trump is proposing a nearly 20 percent cut in NIH funding.

LIBERAL BILLIONAIRE TOM STEYER ON POLITICAL FUTURE: ‘NOTHING IS OFF THE TABLE’

 

 

Story and photo by Ken Stone

Originally published at Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Photo:  Tom Steyer speaks at La Mesa-Foothills Democratic Club

April 6, 2017 (La Mesa) -- Billionaire Tom Steyer gave a stemwinder Wednesday, railing against the “liars and cheaters” of the Trump administration and calling the White House “malevolent, shallow and incompetent.”

Tom Steyer slammed the White House but cautioned against a “Fortress California” mind-set. But a La Mesa-Foothills Democratic Club audience didn’t hear what some wanted most from the biggest single donor in the 2016 election.

TRUMP ROLLS BACK PROTECTIONS FOR WOMEN WORKERS—JUST IN TIME FOR PAYCHECK PROTECTION DAY

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

Photo by Marc Levin - Ivanka and Pato, CC BY 2.0

April 5, 2017 (Washington D.C.)—Tuesday was Equal Pay Day—94 days into the year, signifying how many more days the average woman must work to earn as much as a man.

Ironically, Ivanka Trump, special assistant to her father, President Donald Trump tweeted, “#EqualPayDay is a reminder that women deserve equal pay for equal work. We must work to close the gender pay gap!”  Yet days earlier, her father signed an executive order that rolled back 14 protections for women workers –including the Fair Pay order signed by then-President Barack Obama.

TRUMP BUDGET LEAVES HOMELESS, INCLUDING VETS, OUT IN THE COLD

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 4, 2017 (San Diego) – One of the harshest cuts in President Donald Trump’s budget is his proposal to completely eliminate the U.S. interagency Council on Homelessness.  The Council helps all homeless people, but has been particularly effective helping homeless veterans. It has been successful in ending homelessness among veterans in three states and cutting veterans’ homeless nationwide by 47 percent. Associated Press reports.

INJURED PROTESTERS CASE AGAINST TRUMP CAN PROCEED, JUDGE RULES

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 3, 2017 (Washington, D.C.) - The Constitution’s First Amendment protects free speech – but not if that speech incites violence.

On the campaign trail, Donald Trump once said he’d like to punch a protester in the face.  And at a rally in Louisville, Kentucky in March last year, he pointed at African-American protesters and repeatedly told the crowd to “Get them out.”

MEDIA WATCHDOG: MOST AMERICANS OPPOSE CUTS IN SPENDING ON PUBLIC TV, BUT TRUMP BUDGET WOULD ELIMINATE ALL FUNDS

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 1, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – A new study finds that 54% of Americans surveyed oppose cuts to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which funds Public Broadcasting Service ie. public television.  The poll conducted March 24-25 by Morning Consult among a national sample of 2,201 U.S. adults found that only 31% support cuts.

BIPARTISAN MEMBERS OF SENATE AND HOUSE INTRODUCE BILLS TO REGULATE POT LIKE ALCOHOL, GIVE TAX BREAKS TO MARIJUANA BUSINESSES

 

Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), Republican member of House Ways and Means Committee, joins Rep. Earl Blumenauer as lead sponsor of tax reform bill

East County News Service

March 30, 2017 (Washington D.C.) -- A bipartisan group of U.S. senators and representatives this week introduced seven measures to advance cannabis policy at the federal level. The bills covered a broad range of issues related to resolving tension between state and federal cannabis laws.

PHILANTHROPIST AND ENVIRONMENTALIST TOM STEYER SPEAKS APRIL 5 IN LA MESA

 

By Devorah Ann Fox

March 30, 2017 (La Mesa) – California philanthropist and environmentalist Tom Steyer will speak at the La Mesa – Foothills Democratic Club meeting on Wednesday, April 5 at the La Mesa Recreation Center.  A 6:30 p.m. snack and social hour will precede his 7 p.m. speech and a question and answer period.

MAYOR WELLS LEADS EFFORT TO OPPOSE SANCTUARY STATE BILL, LAUNCH “SAFE CITIES” EFFORT

 

 

By Miriam Raftery and Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

March 31, 2017 (El Cajon )—El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells is leading efforts among local officials opposed to Senate Bill 54, which would declare California a sanctuary state.  Officials from several local cities joined  Wells in a press conference March 29th at the El Cajon Police Department, where about 25 protesters who support the sanctuary measure also turned out.

Opponents of SB 54 claim it would make communities less safe and put federal funds at risk.  They have launched their own website, www.mayorsforsafecities.org

Critics disagree, and one local official contends that backers of the Safe Cities website have disseminated "alternative facts"  that mislead the public on SB 54.

SENATORS ATKINS AND LARA RELEASE DETAILS ON HEALTHY CALIFORNIA ACT: UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE PLAN TO GIVE CHOICES TO ALL STATE RESIDENTS

 

East County News Service

March 30, 2017 (Sacramento) — Today, Senators Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) and Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) released details about their landmark Healthy California Act (Senate Bill 562) to create universal health coverage for every California resident.

THE EPIDEMIC OF RUSSIA SCANDAL DEATHS, DISAPPEARANCES & THAT DAMNED FALLING BATHTUB

 

By Shaun Mullen, originally published at The Moderate Voice, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Shaun Mullen was an award-winning editor and reporter who covered the Vietnam War, O.J. Simpson trials, Clinton impeachment, Osama bin Laden and more before turning to blogging and social commentary. He was a five-time Pulitzer Prize nominee, covered 12 presidential campaigns and authored several books. Much of his work is archived and accessible online in the Shaun D. Mullen Journalism Papers in Special Collections at the University of Delaware Library.

March 29, 2017 (Washington D.C.) -- Just because people with connections to Donald Trump’s Russia scandal keep dying or disappearing unexpectedly does not necessarily mean that their heart attacks, assassinations in broad daylight, mysterious exits and other premature departures are any more than an uncanny number of coincidences. (Cough, cough.) But the guy authorities claim was critically injured when his bathtub fell on him on the eve of a court appearance that would have been deeply embarrassing to the Vladimir Putin regime who also happens to be a key witness in a U.S. fraud case took my conspiracy-averse, never-leap-to-conclusions investigative self over the top.

SEXUAL ASSAULT VICTIMS’ BILL OF RIGHTS APPROVED BY ASSEMBLY PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE

 

East County News Service      

March 28, 2017 (Sacramento) — The Sexual Assault Survivors Bill of Rights, or Assembly Bill 1312, has been unanimously approved by the Assembly Public Safety Committee. The measure is authored by San Diego Democratic Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher.

BUDGET WHACKS FUNDS FOR COAST GUARD, ARTS, EDUCATION AND ENVIRONMENT WHILE BOOSTING MILITARY SPENDING

 

 

Read the full proposed budget:  https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/omb/budget/fy2018/...

By Miriam Raftery

March 27, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- Donald Trump’s proposed federal budget aims to boost military spending by 10% while slashing funds for many other departments and eliminating some completely.

GOV. BROWN WARNS PRESIDENT TRUMP: "DON'T MESS WITH CALIFORNIA"

 

By Chris Jennewein, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Photo:  Gov. Jerry Brown on NBC’s Meet the Press. Image from broadcast

March 27, 2017 (Sacramento) -- Gov. Jerry Brown warned the Trump administration Sunday that attacking California over immigration “could blow up in your face in a giant recession.”

Brown, who is in Washington and appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” said the Trump administration should be careful interfering with the Golden State because of its size and economic power.

CAMPO-LAKE MORENA MEETING MONDAY TO INCLUDE PARKS FUNDING, REVIEW OF APPLICANTS FOR VACANCY AND KEY REPORTS

 

East County News Service

March 26, 2017 (Campo-Lake Morena) – The Campo-Lake Morena Planning Group will meet on Monday night, March 27 at 7 p.m.  The agenda includes a proposal to use 20% of new park funding for maintenance of existing parks, as well as review of applicants to fill a planning group vacancy. There will also be standing committee reports including water issues and announcements on items ranging from marijuana regulatory changes to plans for Star Ranch. Below is the full agenda and meeting location details:

TRUMPCARE DEFEAT: TRUMP PULLS OBAMACARE REPEAL VOTE: PLAN WAS LOSING CONSERVATIVES AND MODERATES

 

Reprinted with permission from The Moderate Voice, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

By Joe Gandelman, Editor-In-Chief, The Moderate Voice

March 25, 2017 (San Diego) -- President Donald Trump did not win bigly in today’s vote — that never occurred — in the House of representatives. The one-two step of repealing Obamacare in favor of what many (not the White House) call Trumpcare and others (Trump’s supporters) call Ryancare simply did not happen. They didn’t have the votes. Cable coverage and stories detailed how the bill was hemorrhaging hard-core conservative Republican and moderate Republican support.

SUPREME COURT UNANIMOUSLY OVERTURNS GORSUCH RULING; ALL 8 JUSTICES VOTE TO PROTECT RIGHTS OF DISABLED STUDENTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 24, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – The U.S. Supreme Court, by a unanimous 8-0 vote, has voted that public schools must provide disabled students with opportunities to achieve “appropriately ambitious” progress, not just a bare minimum education, under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

HEALTHCARE VOTE TODAY ON REVISED BILL WITH LESS DEFICIT REDUCTION, ELIMINATION OF MANDATORY MATERNITY AND NEWBORN COVERAGE, OTHER CHANGES

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo:  Tweet sent by ex-Bush White House lawyer Richard Painter, showing all-male White Hosue meeting at which vital healthcare benefits for women were stripped from the bill.  Painter says the bill made "Trumpcare even worse."  But Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) says it will "save America."

March 24, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – President Trump has demanded that the House of Representatives hold an up-or-down vote today on Republican’s American Health Care Act , stating that if it does not pass, the Affordable Healthcare Act (Obamacare) will remain in place and he will move on to other priorities such as trade reforms.

Lacking enough votes for passage,  Republicans held a closed-door meeting last night on a hastily-revised version of their original plan to woo conservatives with changes such as taking away healthcare coverage for pregnant women and repealing new taxes sooner. The new version  is still estimated to result in 24 million people losing healthcare, but would reduce the deficit by only $150 billion, not the $337 billion in the original bill, according to a revised Congressional Budget Office report.

Healthcare  amendments added to woo the most conservative members of Congress all weaken existing protections.  According to a Washington Post story those stories include:

JUSTICE DEPT. LAUNCHES CRIMINAL PROBE INTO REP. DUNCAN HUNTER

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 23, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – The U.S. Justice Department is conducting a criminal probe into allegations that Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) illegally used campaign finance funds for personal gain, according to a statement issued today by House Committee on Ethics Chairwoman Susan Brooks. (R-Indiana) and Ranking Member Theodore Dutch(D-Florida.)

The statement indicated that the Dept. of Justice has asked  the committee to defer its investigation into potential ethics violations.  The Committee also released  the independent Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE)  report on its findings.  That report reveals that the bipartisan OCE members voted unanimously, 5-0, to recommend that the House Committee on Ethics further review the allegations “because there is  “substantial reason to believe that Rep. Hunter converted campaign funds to personal use to pay expenses that were not legitimate and verifiable campaign expenditures attributable to bona fide campaign or political purposes.”

REPUBLICANS HAVE NARROW MARGIN TO PASS HEALTHCARE BILL: SAN DIEGO MEMBERS COULD CAST DECIDING VOTES

 

East County News Service

March 22, 2017 (San Diego) – To pass the Republican healthcare bill will require the support of all but 21 Republicans. So far, 27 have said they are leaning against it or opposed, putting passage in jeopardy.  San Diego Republican Congressmen Duncan Hunter and Darrell Issa are both listed as supporters of the measure, according to NBC News.

VOEPEL'S VETERANS EMPLOYMENT PARITY ACT CLEARS FIRST LEGISLATIVE HURDLE

 

East County News Service

March 21, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- This afternoon, the Assembly Committee on Veterans Affairs voted to support AB 353, the Veterans Employment Parity Act, with unanimous support (10-0).



"The Veterans Affairs Committee took an important step today toward expanding job opportunities for our nation's veterans. With a higher unemployment rate than the national average, it's critical that we provide private employers with the option to give preference to veterans during the hiring process," said Voepel.

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