Recent Articles

Coming soon: Force of Law, a new podcast on the debate over police shootings in California

By Laurel Rosenhall

Our new podcast, Force of Law, will bring you the stories of families who have lost loved ones to police, law enforcement officers who face split-second decisions while doing a dangerous job and policymakers grappling with an issue that is emotional and politically charged.  Subscribe and get the first episode Monday.

Destination El Salvador: Newsom’s first international trip as governor is a counterpoint to Trump

By Elizabeth Aguilera

Gov. Gavin Newsom says he’s heading to El Salvador for his first international trip to explore the reasons Central Americans are fleeing their countries. But he’s also aware of the political symbolism of the trip, which is designed to highlight what Democrats regard as California’s more compassionate approach in sharp contrast to the Trump administration’s aversion to the waves of asylum seekers at the U.S. border.

Did Newsom “defy” the will of the people on executions? New poll says no

By Ben Christopher

Though Gov. Gavin Newsom has been criticized for “thwarting” the will of the California voter in freezing the death penalty, a new poll suggests he might have his finger on the pulse.

After weeks of Trump trolling, California’s Capitol hits mute on the Mueller report

By Laurel Rosenhall

When the long-awaited report from Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III landed last week, the response from California was more or less . . . crickets.

A state lawmaker borrowed nearly a half-million dollars to buy a home. You might have voted for her lender.

By Matt Levin

Former U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez loaned state Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva $430,000 to buy a house in Orange County—an arrangement that some legal experts labeled unusual. Both politicians said it was not improper and resulted from their friendship.

The #RealCollege guru offers three ways to fix California’s student financial aid

By Felicia Mello

If the plight of hungry and homeless college students has lately caught the national media’s attention, it’s in no small part due to the efforts of Temple University professor Sara Goldrick-Rab.

Diminishing returns: Is California running out of ways to lead voters to the polls?

By Ben Christopher

Assemblyman Evan Low wants to make election day a state holiday—the latest in a string of Democratic proposals Would it bring more Californians to the polls or have state lawmakers run out of obstacles to knock down between the voter and the ballot box?

Commentary

 

For the privilege of helping others, I will be paying off student loans for 20 years

By Anna Shoopman

The college admissions scam, much of which involves parents of USC students, serves as a blaring signal that college is not about education. It is about status. The majority of us do not have anyone to help buy our admission, let alone our education. I am one of the millions of Americans who will graduate with massive debt. By the time I earn my master’s degree in a year and a half, my student loans will amount to about $80,000.

Are big tax increases coming to California?

By Dan Walters

Big tax increases would be needed to pay for the expansionist goals of Capitol Democrats, but they would be a heavy political lift.

An execution at Parchman Farm

By Gregory Favre

Anyone who has witnessed an execution never forgets it. The memory of August (Boogie Woogie) LaFontaine’s death by lethal gas, pushed far back into the darkest shadows of my mind, came to light again with Gov. Gavin Newsom’s announcement of his moratorium on the state’s death penalty, an action taken in four states in recent years.

Banning paper receipts just more pettifoggery

By Dan Walters

Banning paper cash register receipts doesn’t rise to the level of a legislative solution. It’s pettifoggery.

Poll underscores California’s housing crisis

By Dan Walters

A new statewide poll indicates that Californians are very worried about housing affordability — so much so that many are contemplating leaving the state.

Solving California’s housing crisis demands action. These steps will help

By Jared Martin

California’s 4.2 percent unemployment rate is at a 10-year low. Wages are accelerating at their fastest pace in nearly a decade. But prospective home buyers continue to see sticker shock, with median prices still hovering in the $530,000 range. The affordability problem must be addressed, and fast, if California is to remain a place where middle-class people can live.

We must end bias in the justice system. Here’s one answer

By Sydney Kamlager-Dove

We all have biases. We need to stop pretending that we don’t act on our perceptions. Most of us prejudge, even if those prejudices are unintentional. The good news is that studies also reveal that as people become aware of their unconscious biases, and are reminded of them regularly, they can correct themselves.

California can’t wait for Washington’s approval to control health care spending

By Glenn Melnick

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s call in his State of the State speech to restrain health care costs in California is rooted in some eye-popping numbers.  The cost of health care for a family of four reached $28,000 in 2018. If nothing is done, it will soon be $30,000 and more. This is clearly unsustainable. The governor can take the lead on two issues right now.

Can California close its ‘achievement gap’?

By Dan Walters

A persistent “achievement gap” plagues California schools, but it’s uncertain how it can be closed.

Fewer California youths are getting arrested. Consequences have become more serious for those who are arrested

By Mike Males

Violent offenses such as murder, robbery, rape and assault are declining. Lower-level offenses, especially petty theft, minor vandalism and minor status offenses like truancy, show the biggest increases in court dispositions per arrest. Yet lesser offenders are exactly the ones most successfully diverted to community-based and restitution programs.

New path on California water must include Delta communities

By Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla

Any new path on California water must bring Delta community and fishing interests to the table. We have solutions to offer. We live with the impacts of state water management decisions from loss of recreation to degradation of water quality to collapsing fisheries.