What’s on your ballot this year? Here are some major themes and a few examples of the propositions Californians may be asked to vote on in 2018.
The 2018 elections are coming—and those of you who don’t spend your waking hours monitoring the secretary of state’s website may have some questions. Here’s a quick primer for anyone resolving to enter 2018 as a more informed citizen.
One wants to end the death penalty. The other thinks capital punishment is just. One campaigned for tax increases that the other opposed. One tried to put Hillary Clinton in the White House. The other helped elect President George W. Bush. What both men believe, however, is that Latinos—California’s largest ethnic group—suffer disproportionate levels of poverty in part because they barely turn out to vote. That common ground helps form the basis of an unlikely political alliance that could shape the 2018 race to determine the next governor of California. Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa—a former mayor of Los Angeles and speaker of the Assembly—has hired a Republican political consultant to work on his campaign to become California governor.
If the June 5 primary is the prelude to the November general election, the California Democratic Party is set to hold a prelude to the prelude.
This weekend members of the state’s dominant party will meet in San Diego for its annual convention. Platform writing and morale boosting aside, the main task will be to pick which candidates get to run with the state party endorsement.
The results might actually matter this time. Four Democratic gubernatorial candidates will be trying to win the party’s backing—or keep it away from their opponents. U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein faces an increasingly credible challenger in state Sen. Kevin De León. And hopes of a blue wave this November have yielded a bumper crop of progressive candidates vying for congressional and legislative seats.
At stake: 167 race endorsements, although most have already been approved at the local level. For the statewide races and some unresolved local ones, however, things are expected to get rowdy.
Start at the top of the ticket: None of the gubernatorial campaigns are projecting an easy endorsement win, which for statewide races requires 60 percent of the delegate vote. Even the candidate who’s been seen as the front-runner is hinting of a stalemate. Read More
The top three Republicans running for governor convened in downtown San Francisco Tuesday night to lay out their respective visions for the state—and give a sizable boost to the liberal city’s scant GOP-affiliated population.
The ideological mismatch was lost on no one, not least debate moderator and San Francisco Chronicle editorial page editor John Diaz. After listening to the candidates try to outdo one another in support of a Trump presidency, he said: “This is the first time in San Francisco I have heard an argument among people about who most supports Donald Trump.”
Despite the setting, Assemblyman Travis Allen, businessman John Cox, and former Congressman Doug Ose were unabashedly right of center. (Cox acknowledged he originally did not support Trump but said he has since become convinced Trump is a “true conservative” after all.) On issues relating to housing, climate change, health care, immigration and taxes, the three contenders disagreed on little—except who on the stage represented the true conservative choice for California.
Republicans have worried that the trio risk splitting the conservative vote in June—inadvertently ensuring that no Republican candidate placed in the “top two” cutoff for the November election. “I think they should both drop out,” Allen said of his opponents. “I have never lost an election.”
“We’re not going to change California with more politicians,” responded Cox, who stressed that the nation’s best governors were former businessmen instead of “the same old same old” politicos. Read More
Direct democracy can be an exhausting business.
This year civically engaged Californians will be expected to have informed opinions about affordable housing and park funding, how best to divvy up cap-and-trade money, how to spend the state’s new gas tax money, and when new voter-approved laws ought to be enacted.
And those are just the measures on the ballot so far.
Joining those five—all of which come referred from the Legislature and most of which are destined for the June ballot—are the citizen-backed proposals, which must compete for spots on the November ballot. More than 40 have already been cleared to be passed around the state gathering signatures, while another dozen await the go-ahead from the state attorney general.
What’s on the menu this year? It’s still too soon to say for sure, but here are some major themes and a few examples of what you can expect to see: Read More
The 2018 elections are coming—and those of you who don’t spend your waking hours monitoring the secretary of state’s website may have some questions.
Questions like: Wait, there’s an election? And, didn’t we just have an election? And, Is Jerry Brown running again?
Yes, yes, and no, but you may hear a lot from the current governor between now and the elections.
In fact, expect to hear more political chatter of all kinds as Californians gear up to select a governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and other statewide constitutional officers; new Assembly members (all of them) and state senators (just half); members of Congress including a U.S. senator; and a yet-to-be-determined number of ballot propositions that may claim to remedy the housing crisis, fix healthcare policy and repeal the new gas tax, for starters.
Here’s a quick primer for anyone resolving to enter the 2018 elections as a more informed citizen: Read More
One wants to end the death penalty. The other thinks capital punishment is just. One campaigned for tax increases that the other opposed. One tried to put Hillary Clinton in the White House. The other helped elect President George W. Bush.
That common ground helps form the basis of an unlikely political alliance that could shape the 2018 race to determine the next governor of California. Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa—a former mayor of Los Angeles and speaker of the Assembly—has hired a Republican political consultant to work on his campaign to become California governor.
“I brought him on because I want a broad cross section of eyes and ears to help me navigate through what admittedly is tough terrain ahead,” Villaraigosa said in an interview. “I make the decisions ultimately. But I’m smart enough to know I don’t know everything.”
The GOP consultant, Mike Madrid, is a widely recognized expert in Latino voting patterns who has long urged Republicans to reach out more to Latino voters. He was the California Republican Party’s political director in the 1990s and, more recently, has been paid by the state party to research local government elections. But Madrid has been so turned off by Donald Trump that he says he did not vote for a president last year and has begun criticizing his party for adopting a nationalistic tone. Read More