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Trump v California

Trump v. California: Scoring the Bout

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California's blue cheering squad (clockwise): Gov. Jerry Brown, Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León and Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon. Trump's red cheering squad (clockwise): Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. Illustration by Dan Hubig. Animation by John Osborn D'Agostino
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Don’t expect a clean fight.

On a wide array of issues, the Trump administration and California’s Democratic leaders are prepping for protracted battle. Some of these conflicts will end up in court. Some will result in new state law. A few may play out exclusively on Twitter. All will affect how Californians live their lives.

As a state with a Democratic governor and a Democratic super-majority in its Legislature, California operates under lots of state policies that are at odds with the Trump administration. As for the people? More than 4.5 million Californians voted for Trump—but that’s only half of the votes they gave to his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton. Regardless of whom you’re rooting for, this Golden State Gloves match is going to be a bear-knuckle brawl.

We know there’s lots of hype and confusion out there. We’re betting you’ve been asking yourself, “Can President Trump really do that? Can Congress really do that? Can California really do that?” And that’s why here at CALmatters, a nonprofit and nonpartisan news operation, we’ve developed a tool to simplify things. Issue by issue, it lays out President Trump’s throwdown to the status quo and California’s impact—and we’ll be updating it from time to time when there’s a new punch or counter-punch. (Click the buttons on and off below to sort by topic, or by the status of the fight.) See exactly what issues are in conflict and read the latest updates. These updates link to blogs devoted to each topic, where you’ll find background and context to help you understand how it’s going down.

The next four years look to be a slugfest. We’ll help you keep score.

 

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Economy
Education
Environment
Health
Immigration
Justice
status
All talk, no action—yet
It's on!
Punch
Counter-punch
On the ropes
Draw!
California wins!
Trump wins!

Environment

Oil and gas

Trump Throwdown


Trump favors aggressive domestic oil and gas production and has said he would support offshore drilling if done responsibly.

California Impact


The massive oil spill off the Santa Barbara coast in 1969 taught state officials that even the most responsible offshore oil rigs can fail.

update: President Trump today signed an executive order that could open waters off the California coast to new oil and gas drilling, triggering outrage from state officials—and the unveiling of a plan to try to thwart future drilling. Read More

updated Apr 28, 2017

Economy

Taxes

Trump Throwdown


"I know our complex tax laws better than anyone who has ever run for president and am the only one who can fix them," Trump tweeted in October. "I will cut taxes—BIG LEAGUE."

California Impact


Everyone loves a good tax cut and President Trump's fiscal plan is full of them—especially for businesses and high earners. But if the President and his allies in Congress take a band saw to the tax code, Californians may lose some of their favorite budgetary goodies.

update: President Trump is rounding out his first 100 days in office with an ambitious tax reform proposal that threatens to nix a provision that Californians particularly enjoy—axing the state and local tax deduction. Read More

updated Apr 27, 2017

Health

Family planning

Trump Throwdown


Trump has vowed to defund Planned Parenthood because it provides abortions.

California Impact


Democratic state leaders aim to keep and protect health care services, including those provided by Planned Parenthood.

update: A Senate panel this week approved legislation that would give Californians the option to buy a pro-choice license plate—a direct response to Trump efforts to strip federal funding from any medical provider who performs an abortion. Read More

updated Apr 27, 2017

Justice

Marijuana

Trump Throwdown


While candidate Trump offered mixed views on whether states should be able to decriminalize pot, his conservative attorney general has called legalization a “tragic mistake.”

California Impact


Last fall, Californians voted to allow adults to use marijuana recreationally without having to sheepishly complain about back pain to an uninterested physician.

update: As Congress nears a Friday deadline to avoid a federal government shutdown, an important provision protecting California's medical marijuana operations hangs in the balance. Read More

updated Apr 25, 2017

Economy

Infrastructure

Trump Throwdown


"The only one to fix the infrastructure of our country is me—roads, airports, bridges," Trump tweeted in May. "I know how to build. Pols only know how to talk!"

California Impact


The state faces a backlog of transportation and other infrastructure projects. And Gov. Brown tweeted to the new President to tout his high-speed rail plan, noting "California's ready."

update: The state has issued its first round of bonds to finance the construction of the state-crossing, GOP-enraging infrastructure project. Read More

updated Apr 25, 2017

Immigration

Sanctuary status

Trump Throwdown


Five days into his term, President Trump signed an executive order aiming to remove federal grants from so-called sanctuary cities for refusing to work with federal immigration agents.

California Impact


By some definitions, California itself already is a sanctuary state—and legislative leaders are backing a push to go even further.

update: A federal judge just blocked President Trump’s executive order that would have kept federal funds from flowing to municipalities that consider themselves sanctuary cities. Read More

updated Apr 25, 2017

Economy

Dollars from Feds

Trump Throwdown


"We are going to ask every department head in government to provide a list of wasteful spending projects that we can eliminate in my first 100 days," candidate Trump announced at the Republican National Convention.

California Impact


California—its citizens, its cities, and state government—receive roughly $368 billion from the federal government every year.

update: A federal judge just blocked President Trump’s executive order that would have kept federal funds from flowing to municipalities that consider themselves sanctuary cities. Read More

updated Apr 25, 2017

Education

DREAMers

Trump Throwdown


As a candidate, Trump vowed to repeal DACA, a 2012 executive action that shields children from deportation who had been brought to the U.S. illegally—calling the program “illegal amnesty.”

California Impact


UC, CSU and school districts up and down the state have declared themselves "sanctuaries," vowing to protect more than 2 million undocumented immigrant students from deportation while they're at school.

update: Most Californians in a new poll say they are concerned about the Trump administration's immigration crackdown, and two-thirds want public schools to become "sanctuary safe zones." Read More

updated Apr 20, 2017

Education

School Vouchers

Trump Throwdown


Pledging to restore the American dream for inner-city students trapped in failing schools, candidate Trump in September pitched a $20 billion voucher program and called school choice “the civil rights issue of our time.”

California Impact


Voters here have twice rejected private school voucher initiatives, so the state is unlikely to embrace Trump’s plan. But Title I funding for low-income California kids could be on the line if Trump tries to use that federal money to finance his voucher program.

update: Californians have overwhelmingly rejected private school voucher initiatives twice in the last 25 years, but a new poll shows this deep blue state has renewed interest in a policy championed by the Trump administration. Read More

updated Apr 20, 2017

Immigration

Deportation

Trump Throwdown


In June Trump tweeted, “I have never liked the media term 'mass deportation'—but we must enforce the laws of the land!”

California Impact


The state Senate and Assembly passed identical resolutions urging Trump not to begin mass deportation. Lawmakers have also introduced several bills in an effort to protect undocumented immigrants facing deportation.

update: As California lawmakers consider beefing up regulations for immigration detention facilities within the state, the Trump administration appears to be heading in the opposite direction. Read More

updated Apr 14, 2017

Health

Obamacare/Trumpcare

Trump Throwdown


A year before his inauguration, Trump tweeted: “There is nobody more against ObamaCare than me, will repeal & replace.”

California Impact


California continues encouraging people to sign up for insurance through the state exchange, while state leaders are quietly working on figuring out how the state might fill the void if the program goes away.

update: While GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan is insisting that the fight to repeal Obamacare is not over, Democratic leaders in California continue celebrating on social media over the House's failure to secure enough votes to pass the Republicans' replacement. Read More

updated Mar 27, 2017

Environment

Climate change

Trump Throwdown


Trump famously tweeted: "The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive."

California Impact


California sees itself as a global leader on combatting "devastating climate change"—which Gov. Brown calls "the existential threat of our time."

update: Saying ‘a deal is a deal” the California Air Resources Board voted last week to endorse the stringent automobile emissions standards hammered out with federal agencies five years ago, vowing to go to court if the Environmental Protection Agency follows through on a threat to undo the regulations—and then blocks the state from setting its own standards. Read More

updated Mar 24, 2017

Environment

Protection

Trump Throwdown


“What they do is a disgrace," candidate Trump told Fox News about the Environmental Protection Agency. "Every week they come out with new regulations. They're making it impossible.”

California Impact


California relies on federal rules to protect endangered species, waterways, forests, deserts and other environmentally sensitive areas.

update: Leaders of California’s three coastal conservation agencies are calling the Trump Administration’s proposed budget a threat to the state’s environmental and economic future, and urged California's congressional delegation to push back against deep cuts to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Read More

updated Mar 20, 2017

Justice

Civil rights

Trump Throwdown


While on the campaign trail and in office, Trump has proposed a range of policies that have drawn criticism from civil rights groups—from declaring his openness to a “Muslim registry” to defending North Carolina’s controversial transgender bathroom bill.

California Impact


Democratic legislative leaders say they'll bar California agencies from sharing data for a Muslim registry, and have passed legislation mandating that single-stall toilets be marked gender-neutral.

update: A federal judge in Hawaii just blocked what President Trump called a "watered-down version" of his travel ban, prompting the President to assail the ruling as unprecedented judicial overreach that "makes us look weak." Read More

updated Mar 15, 2017

Economy

Trade

Trump Throwdown


President Trump campaigned on protecting American workers by pulling out or renegotiating trade deals that he blamed for losing U.S. jobs. He also floated the idea of imposing tariffs on foreign imports.

California Impact


California’s $2.4 trillion economic engine, the sixth-largest economy in the world, relies on free trade to sell everything from laptops to almonds. Economists have warned that Trump’s approach could disrupt supply chains, hurt domestic jobs and drive up consumer prices.

update: Two economic forecasts released in recent days warn of dire consequences for California should President Trump’s policies steer the country into a trade war. Read More

updated Mar 9, 2017

Immigration

Databases

Trump Throwdown


An opponent of illegal immigration, Trump now possesses a database of personal information about hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children, whom the Obama administration granted a temporary reprieve from deportation and work permits.

California Impact


State Democratic legislators aren’t waiting to find out if Trump will come after the data California has collected from undocumented immigrants. The Legislature aims to lock down data collected from driver licenses, scholarships, etc.

update: Fears about deportation had initially depressed interest in a state-funded scholarship program for undocumented California students, but a campaign to reassure applicants seems to have worked. Applications this year are up slightly compared to last year thanks to a late surge. Read More

updated Mar 3, 2017

Immigration

Border enforcement

Trump Throwdown


Trump signed an executive order calling for construction of a barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border.

California Impact


California’s Democratic legislative leaders accuse Trump of demonizing immigrants, and say there is no need for a new wall.

update: In response to President Trump's campaign to build a wall along more of the southern border, one California Democratic lawmaker is trying to throw up a barrier of his own: a bill that would require state voter approval of any federally funded project worth more than a billion dollars, and prohibit the state from contracting with any company that also provides goods or services to the federal government in its efforts to construct a new wall. Read More

updated Feb 22, 2017

Environment

Clean Energy

Trump Throwdown


The president has been noticeably mute, although he does strongly oppose an ‘awful’ offshore wind energy project visible from his Scottish golf resort.

California Impact


The state has the most ambitious renewable energy goals in the nation, aiming for 50 percent clean energy by 2030.

update: President Trump is a big booster of the country’s fossil fuel sector, pledging to revive the coal industry and advance oil and gas drilling. But given his outspoken skepticism about the dangers of climate change, questions abound about whether he'll be inclined to keep allocating federal dollars to either support large scale renewable energy projects or to incentives consumers to buy electric cars and install rooftop solar system. California is depending on this kind of federal support to meet its clean energy goals. Read More

updated Feb 19, 2017

Environment

Water

Trump Throwdown


Candidate Trump mocked California water policy at a May 2016 rally in Fresno, telling farmers it was "insane" for the state to pump water into the Pacific Ocean to save a three-inch fish.

California Impact


State officials’ plan to replumb the state will include protections for wildlife and habitat, sacrifices from farmers, and require federal permits and massive government funding.

update: Included in the president’s proposed infrastructure priority list is $250 million for the Cadiz water project in the Mojave Desert. The controversial project would pump groundwater from the Mojave Desert and deliver it via pipeline to Southern California customers. It has so far been blocked by the federal Bureau of Land Management. That might change. Read More

updated Feb 9, 2017

Justice

Guns

Trump Throwdown


Trump opposes state assault weapon and high-capacity magazine bans, and has supported a “national right” to concealed carry.

California Impact


California recently tightened its already strict gun control measures by outlawing the possession of high-capacity magazines, requiring background checks for ammunition, and banning the sale of certain types of assault rifles.

update: California would be forced to allow out-of-state gun owners to pack concealed handguns if a bill with strong GOP backing clears Congress and is signed by President Trump. He has likened concealed-carry gun permits to drivers' licenses that should be honored across state lines. Read More

updated Feb 3, 2017

Health

Medi-Cal

Trump Throwdown


Trump’s plan calls for changing how the feds fund health care for the poor (Medicaid, known in California as Medi-Cal) by giving less money to the states in set-amount "block grants," which the states would then decide how to use.

California Impact


If Medicaid's funding changes to block grants, California—which receives billions—is expected to receive less. State Democratic leaders hope to be able to fill the gap as much as possible, perhaps by cutting some services to keep as many people covered as possible.

update: For some 164,000 poor undocumented California children, the ability to see a doctor for regular medical care hangs in the balance. Several experts predict they could be among the first to lose health coverage if the Trump administration carries out its promise to end much of Obamacare, leaving California to try to make up the difference. Read More

updated Jan 25, 2017

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