In summary

A collection of commentaries by Dan Walters over the past week.

Newsom and Trump wanted Cox—and got their wishes

Gavin Newsom, the Democrats’ candidate for governor, and Republican President Donald Trump both wanted Republican businessman John Cox to finish second in this weeks’s gubernatorial primary and thus gain a spot on the November ballot Both got their wishes. Newsom can now coast to the governorship, and Republicans hope having Cox on the ballot will spur a higher turnout of GOP voters and save several embattled congressional districts.

Local officials avoid ‘p-word’ as they push new taxes

California voters faced a slew of local tax and bond measures in this week’s election and more will be coming in November, but in proposing them, local officials avoid mentioning escalating pension costs as the major reason they need more revenue.

Wildfires and lead paint reignite Capitol’s ‘tort wars’

The “tort wars” that raged in the Capitol for decades over who and can sue whom are being reignited by conflicts over legal responsibility for wildfires and the sale of lead-based house paint.

Brown may leave with two big projects on the bubble

Gov. Jerry Brown is heavily invested in two massive public works projects, twin water tunnels beneath the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and a north-south bullet train. But as he prepares to leave the governorship for a second time, both are far from certain to be completed.

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Dan Walters has been a journalist for more than 60 years, spending all but a few of those years working for California newspapers. He began his professional career in 1960, at age 16, at the Humboldt Times...