04/18/2017 09:16 AM EDT
THE BUZZ: Outrage, Frustration On The Town Hall Circuit - Republicans aren't the only ones having tough times at this week's town hall meetings during the congressional recess.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Monday stood her ground before an often-combative crowd of about 1,000 in her hometown, where she was booed - and alternately cheered - for her stances on issues ranging from health care to future military action by the Trump administration.
California's senior senator, who appeared at the first of two town hall meetings this week at San Francisco's Scottish Masonic Temple - the next is in Los Angeles Thursday at the First AME Church - told reporters she heard "outrage" from voters who want her to lean left as Trump marks 100 days in the White House. But she said many of don't recognize the harsh political realities for Democrats like herself - that "if there was one branch that wasn't controlled by Republicans ... the dynamic" in Washington would be far different. She urged constituents to channel their frustration into the hard work of finding Democratic candidates to run in 2018.
-- Asked about the "Rep. Barbara Lee for Senate 2018" sign paraded around the auditorium, Feinstein arched an eyebrow: "One sign doesn't quite do it, does it?,'' Feinstein said. "Who knows, it's an open race -- if she wants to run, she's free to run." (Lee's office did not respond to request for comment.)
-- Will Feinstein run for reelection? "You'll find out," she said.
-- The take from SFChronicle's Joe Garofoli: "Many of the 1,000 people who attended Sen. Dianne Feinstein's town hall Monday in San Francisco didn't necessarily disagree with her, they just wanted her to be louder and more aggressive in opposing the Trump administration." Story
DENHAM GETS AN EARFUL -- POLITICO California's David Siders reports: At a packed auditorium in the Central Valley town of Denair, Rep. Jeff Denham - holding his first town hall in the district since the election - was playing the scold. "Now, now," he said when he was jeered. "Now, now."
-- Facing about 1,000 constituents, the Republican congressman was booed for his positions on health care and climate change. He said, "I believe in climate change." But he enraged the audience when, like most Republicans, he said that he supports an "all of the above" energy policy.
-- Denham stayed for more than two and a half hours, but he spent much of that time attempting to tone down the audience. "Now, now," he said. "Now, now. Come on, now."
-- "Rep. Jeff Denham says he's a 'no' on Republican healthcare legislation for now,'' by LATimes' Chris Megerian: "Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Turlock) said Monday night that he wouldn't support his party's healthcare legislation unless it left significant parts of Obamacare intact. Story.
BUENOS DÍAS, good Tuesday morning. Rep. Maxine Waters is becoming Queen of the Trump Impeachment Movement, while Rep. Eric Swalwell continues to raise his profile on the Intel Committee. And that #Calexit movement appears to be derailed - at least for now.
Where's Jerry? No public schedule.
QUOTE OF THE DAY: "I feel when president's grown children are going to go to Uruguay or Dubai, or anywhere else to do business for their father..it ought to be on their own nickel." -- Feinstein, regarding moves by Democrats on Capitol Hill to address Trump family spending.
QUOTE OF THE DAY #2: "The food tastes good - better than elsewhere, somehow. The girls are pretty. The birds chirp as though happy to be here. California is everything it's cracked up to be. "Believe the hype." -- Jay Nordlinger, National Review, "California Journal, Part 1." Story.
TWEET OF THE DAY: Dakota Smith @dakotacdsmith: "Disturbing moment during tonight's Gil Cedillo-Joe Bray-Ali debate: Audience member shouted "Go back to India" to Bray-Ali."
FUN READ -- "The Side Business Devin Nunes and Donald Trump Have in Common" by Tim Burger in Town & Country: "While Trump steaks, Trump University, and Trump Models haven't fared so well, Trump winery, at least, seems to be a success. He's not the only vintner pulling the levers of power in Washington these days. Embattled House intelligence committee Chairman Devin Nunes also dabbles in grapes. Nunes has been a minority partner in Napa's ritzy Alpha Omega since about 2006, when the congressman made between $50,000 and $100,000 selling his share of some family farmland and sunk about the same amount of money into the winery. 'Rich, dense and layered' (is) actually how Wine Spectator opens its review of a 93-point, 2012 Cab offered by Alpha Omega for $200." Story.
POLITICO PLAYBOOK EXCLU! ARNOLD'S NEW ADVENTURE -- Aiming to build on his work on climate change and the environment, former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will debut this month as the narrator of the new Cousteau-produced documentary about the oceans, a 3-D nature extravaganza film, "Wonders of the Sea." The purpose of the visually stunning new production is "to encourage more marine life protection around the world," Schwarzenegger spokesman Daniel Ketchell says.
As a movie hero, Schwarzenegger has destroyed aliens, booted bad guys and saved entire cities on film -- but he's never yet narrated a documentary. But "it's an important film, with an important message,'' he says. The former governor -- in between his political work pushing for an end to gerrymandering and lobbying to protect funding for kids' afterschool programs -- is headed off to Cannes next month to promote the film. Link to YouTube.
THE TRUMP ERA:
-- "How California Gave Us Trumpism,'' by Scott Lucas in POLITICO Magazine: Some of the president's most hard-line advisers forged their beliefs in reaction to what they saw in their home state. Story.
-- "H-1B visa applications drop for first time in years,'' via SFChronicle's Trisha Thadani: "For the first time in years, the number of H-1B visa applications has decreased - a signal that President Trump's "America First" rhetoric is deterring employers from hiring foreign workers, experts say." Story.
-- "Slow-motion collision course: California, Trump's feds headed to major clash on immigration," by Alternet's Steven Rosenfeld in Salon: "The federal government and bastions of opposition to President Donald Trump's anti-immigrant police state are on a slow-motion collision course. An 18-page memo by the Department of Homeland Security describes how the DHS and the Department of Justice are anticipating arresting, holding, processing and deporting large numbers of immigrants lacking visas. However, the memo also details how Trump's coming crackdown is moving slowly, is poorly coordinated and barely funded-even as it has taken high-profile first steps like soliciting construction bids to build a border wall and is planning to showcase demonstration sections by late July." Story
-- "A $10-million fund will help immigrants fight deportations. But should it help those with violent criminal convictions?" by the Los Angeles Times' Dakota Smith: "Fearing mass deportations under President Trump, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and County Supervisor Hilda Solis stood together in December to unveil a $10-million fund to hire lawyers to defend local immigrants without legal status. Modeled after programs in other cities, the L.A. Justice Fund will use city and county money and private donations to help those facing deportation proceedings." Story
-- "San Diego park mural critical of Trump's border wall called 'anti-American'," via San Diego Union Tribune's Kate Morrissey: "The mural shows a worker sending money back to his family in Mexico while being strangled by two hands. One hand represents U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement , which is responsible for deporting people from the U.S. The other hand represents Mexican government officials, whose corruption makes it necessary for Mexicans to migrate for work," the artist said. Story.
CALIFORNIA AND THE CAPITOL CORRIDOR:
-- "California Senate approves projects linked to gas tax hike,'' by AP's Jonathan J.Cooper and Sophia Bollag: "The promised funding for projects in the Central Valley and Riverside County was integral to the tax hike's razor-thin approval earlier this month. Four lawmakers agreed to vote for the tax increase only after Gov. Jerry Brown and top legislative leaders promised to push through legislation guaranteeing funding for their favored projects. Story.
-- "Amid California's pot business boom, most banks run away from all that cash,'' by SacBee's Peter Hecht: Convening in the ballroom, CGA members shared stories about the problems they've had finding banks, credit unions or other institutions willing to take marijuana dollars, make loans to businesses and elevate the legal pot economy from a virtual cash-only industry to one with full access to the financial system. Story.
-- "The Author of the "Calexit" Movement Calls It Quits On His Proposal for a 2018 Ballot Measure,'' by LATimes' John Myers: Marcus Ruiz Evans, the initiative's official proponent, sent an email Monday to the secretary of state's office asking to cancel his initiative." Story.
-- "First California offshore oil platform in 20 years to be removed," by the Mercury News' Paul Rogers: "In a decision that was cheered by environmentalists, a Colorado oil company announced Monday that it will end operations on a prominent offshore oil platform near Santa Barbara, which will result in the first offshore platform removed from California's coast in more than 20 years." Story
-- "Assembly Democrats say addressing the housing affordability crisis is next, but hurdles loom," by the Los Angeles Times' Liam Dillon: "Assemblyman David Chiu (D-San Francisco) said that after legislators passed a major transportation funding package earlier this month, housing was the state's most significant unresolved issue. 'Like transportation, we need to put our money where our mouth is,' Chiu said." Story
-- "California May Leapfrog Nevada with its Presidential Primary,'' by Debra J. Saunders, Las Vegas Review Journal: "The Democratic and Republican National Committees could try to prevent California from holding a primary before Nevada, but University of Nevada Las Vegas political science professor David Damore isn't certain that would happen. "It would be hard to say no to the biggest state that generates the most revenue," he said. As for Nevada, "Obviously, it would hurt us," Damore said. "There are so few delegates at stake here." Story.
-- In response to the decision by CalPERS, California's giant public pension fund, to adopt a "no divestment, ever" policy, reaction from RL Miller, co-founder of Climate Hawks Vote and chair of the California Democratic Party's Environmental Caucus: "We're deeply disappointed by CalPERS' decision to significantly weaken its tradition of shareholder activism, and instead engage with fossil fuel companies whose business plan is destabilization of the earth's climate. While we appreciate the minor gains garnered by CalPERS' shareholder engagement, e.g., disclosure of climate risks at an international mining business, that incrementalism pales compared to the challenge presented by climate change, and activists' demands to divest."
CAMPAIGNS 2018 AND BEYOND:
-- PODCAST OF THE DAY -- "The Rise & Future of Eric Swalwell" -- From unknown congressional newbie four years ago, to power player on the House Intel Cmte, Eric Swalwell has become a man to watch. In an interview with This Golden State's Randy Shandobil, Swalwell acknowledges that the investigation into Russia & the Trump Administration has shot up his name ID & opened doors to a possible run for higher office, including the Senate if Dianne Feinstein decides not to run for re-election." Link to Podcast.
-- "A giant rabbit with a political committee wants to bug Rep. Hunter,'' via San Diego Union Tribune's Joshua Stewart: "Thumper will be the image of a political action committee, Bunny PAC, dedicated to focusing on Hunter's campaign finance issues. Thumper also has a Facebook page, Twitter account, and website (the latter of which some of Hunter's opponents in the 2018 election don't even have). Story.
-- "Libby Schaaf will seek 2nd term as Oakland mayor," by SF Gate's Matier & Ross: "The election isn't for nearly 19 months, but Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf is already up and running for re-election - with her official announcement set for Monday. 'I want to start early because I am about winning the election,' Schaaf told us. 'I don't take anything for granted.'" Story
-- "Incumbents have big campaign money lead," by the San Diego Union-Tribune's: "Reps. Darrell Issa and Duncan Hunter had big financial advantages over their challengers' campaigns, finance reports from the first quarter of this year show. Issa received $320,830 in contributions, more than not only his challengers, but any other candidate in San Diego County." Story
-- From the campaign of Dem Harley Rouda, challenger to GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher: Rouda "raised a whopping $215,257 just four weeks since announcing his campaign for the first quarter filing period. He also reported having $200,183 cash-on-hand in his war chest. Incumbent Rohrabacher, on the other hand, reported raising $222,628 for Q1 with $204,526 in the bank -- a mere $4,343 cash-on-hand difference from what Rouda, a political newcomer who has never served in elected office, maintains."
-- "California Group Home Liable for Millions in Case of Abused Boy,'' via ProPublica: A jury hit FamiliesFirst, one of California's largest mental health care providers, for neglect and fraud. Story.
-- UC Davis student leaders say American flag display should be optional at meetings,'' via SacBee's Diana Lambert: Story.
-- "California utility launches first hybrid power systems," by the Associated Press in the Statesman: Story
-- "Coachella festival goers use 'Find my iPhone' app to locate man with 100 stolen cellphones, police say," by the LA Times' Veronica Rocha: Story
-- "'Caravan Against Fear' To Protest LA Sheriff Over ICE Collaboration," by the Hollywood Patch staff: Story
-- "Students return to California school a week after shooting," by the Associated Press via ABC News: Story
-- "What Is This Mystery Airplane Photographed At California Airport Last Week?" by The Drive's Tyler Rogoway: Story
-- "Today's Your Last Day To Hike Favored Hollywood Sign Trail," by the Hollywood Patch staff: Story
-- "Silicon Valley CEO Pleads 'No Contest' to Abusing His Wife-and Is Offered a Deal for Less Than 30 Days in Jail,'' via The Daily Beast: A deal was struck, and the judge had left for vacation, before the victim had her say in the same Santa Clara courthouse where Brock Turner was given six months for sexual assault. Story.
-- "Snapchat denies claim CEO did not want to expand into 'poor India,'" by The Guardian's Michael Safi: "Snapchat is facing a public relations crisis in India, the world's fastest growing smartphone market, after allegations its founder said the app was 'only for rich people' and that he did not want to 'expand into poor countries like India'" Story
-- "How the potent mix of family and inclusion fueled 'Fate of the Furious' to its historic No. 1 opening," by the Los Angeles Times' Jen Yamato: Story
SPOTTED: Rep. Paul Cook (R) on the flight from Phoenix to DCA. Our source says: "Wouldn't let passengers use the bin above his seat until his wife boarded with the last group. Hope he's not on the record complaining about "entitlements.".
San Diego Chamber of Commerce 20187 Congressional Luncheon: Friday, April 21, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel, San Diego, CA. Immigration, the Wall, the Economy? Hear directly from San Diego County's Congressional delegation - Reps. Darrell Issa, Susan Davis, Scott Peters, and Juan Vargas - on the issues that matter most to tjhe region's economy. Moderator is POLITICO California's Carla Marinucci. Link to more information.
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