Las Vegas shooting tragedy, Second Amendment rights explained, Jim Lacy on Australia’s “Weekend Breakfast”

In this video broadcast Sunday morning, October 8 on Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s “Weekend Breakfast,” California Political Review Publisher Jim Lacy discusses the Las Vegas shooting tragedy, explains Second Amendment rights, and defends the Trump Administration’s response to the Puerto Rican hurricane.

Hollywood sex scandal double standard exposed…by LA Times!

When the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape leaked one year ago, capturing then-candidate, now-President Trump bragging in coarse terms in 2005 about being allowed to grab women because he was a celebrity, Hollywood had a meltdown.

Cher called Trump a “scumbag carny barker” on Twitter. Comedian Patton Oswalt labeled him a “sexist creep.” Actress Emmy Rossum wrote: “misogynistic entitled pig.”

This week, amid revelations that Oscar-winning movie and television producer Harvey Weinstein had a long history of sexually harassing women, Hollywood’s response was largely muted. Film studios on Friday all declined to comment.

“Yup. Hollywood shines light on Catholic Church, sex trafficking — let’s shine it on ourselves a second and what we’ve condoned,” actress-writer-producer Lena Dunham wrote on Twitter, one of the few celebrities who took a public stand.

Read the full article here: http://beta.latimes.com/business/hollywood/la-fi-ct-weinstein-hollywood-hypocrisy-20171006-story.html

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Trump Tax Plan Terrific Boost for California Small Businesses

The much anticipated Federal tax reform framework developed by the Trump Administration and Congressional leaders has been released this week, and it not only lives up to the President’s campaign promises to lower taxes, but will be particularly welcome relief for California’s small businesses.  An outline of the tax reform proposal appears below.

Small businesses in California create jobs at a faster rate than big businesses according to the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California.  Sole proprietorships make up 3.1 million of California’s 4 million business entities according the the state legislature, yet their job creating abilities have been hampered by both Obama-era policies that impose high marginal income tax rates of 39.6% and job killing regulations, and also state policies that keep raising taxes, set the highest marginal state tax rate at 13.3% and place further regulatory impediments to business growth.  The combined current Federal and state top marginal tax rate of 52.9% of income is simply killing off California’s potential for business expansion and better job growth among the state’s many small businesses.

But that is about to change with federal tax reform if the Trump plan can be embraced by members of California’s Congressional delegation and passed into law.  While the over-all Trump tax plan is geared to middle class tax relief and simplifying the enormous tax code, an important provision will give California’s many small businesses some needed breathing room.  Under the Trump plan, the top marginal tax rate for small family-owned businesses, sole proprietorships and so-called small business “S Corporations,” will be reduced and capped at 25%!  This tax reform will allow many of California’s small businesses immediate tax relief, helping profitability, and help businesses to plan and grow and create new jobs with the understanding that their firms won’t be pushed into a more expensive tax bracket for all the effort.  The result should be a greater participation in an improving economy by middle class business owners and more and better job opportunities across the state.

There are a lot of good ideas in the new Trump tax plan, but in my view among the provisions that are the best are those that help and offer hope for California’s small businesses, who are otherwise under siege in a state considered the “worst for business” by CEO magazine now ten years running.

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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE UNIFIED TAX REFORM FRAMEWORK

Lowers Rates for Individuals and Families

The framework shrinks the current seven tax brackets into three – 12%, 25% and 35% – with the potential for an additional top rate for the highest-income taxpayers to ensure that the wealthy do not contribute a lower share of taxes paid than they do today.

Doubles the Standard Deduction and Enhances the Child Tax Credit

The framework roughly doubles the standard deduction so that typical middle-class families will keep more of their paycheck. It also significantly increases the Child Tax Credit.

Eliminates Loopholes for the Wealthy, Protects Bedrock Provisions for Middle Class

To provide simplicity and fairness the framework eliminates many itemized deductions that are primarily used by the wealthy, but retains tax incentives for home mortgage interest and charitable contributions, as well as tax incentives for work, higher education, and retirement security.

Repeals the Death Tax and Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)

The framework repeals the unfair Death Tax and substantially simplifies the tax code by repealing the existing individual AMT, which requires taxpayers to do their taxes twice.

Creates a New Lower Tax Rate and Structure for Small Businesses

The framework limits the maximum tax rate for small and family-owned businesses to 25% – significantly lower than the top rate that these businesses pay today.

To Create Jobs and Promote Competitiveness, Lowers the Corporate Tax Rate

So that America can compete on level playing field, the framework reduces the corporate tax rate to 20% – below the 22.5% average of the industrialized world.

To Boost the Economy, Allows “Expensing” of Capital Investments

The framework allows, for at least five years, businesses to immediately write off (or “expense”) the cost of new investments, giving a much-needed lift to the economy.

Moves to an American Model for Competitiveness

The framework ends the perverse incentive to offshore jobs and keep foreign profits overseas. It levels the playing field for American companies and workers.

Brings Profits Back Home

The framework brings home profits by imposing a one-time, low tax rate on wealth that has already accumulated overseas so there is no tax incentive to keeping the money offshore.

Xavier Becerra Keeps Losing Big Political Cases As Attorney General

Xavier Becerra has already lost some big cases in his new role as California’s Attorney General, as he turns the resources of the state’s top justice office into a political machine for the Democratic Party.

Early this week, a Sacramento County Superior Court Judge determined that California’s attorney general wrote a misleading description of a ballot initiative to repeal the recently approved gas tax increase.  Judge Timothy Frawley ruled that Becerra’s official ballot description would likely confuse voters because it focuses on the loss of transportation funding rather than the repeal of taxes.

“The problem with the Attorney General’s title and summary is that an ordinary, reasonable elector, who is otherwise unfamiliar with the initiative, would not be able to discern what the initiative would do,” Frawley wrote.  Frawley will require lawyers from the Attorney General’s office to appear again on September 22 on the ballot title and summary, which appears on petition forms and the ballot, with revised language that is not misleading.  Republican Assemblyman Travis Allen, a candidate for governor, is backing the repeal initiative and brought the lawsuit against Becerra’s ballot title.  The description must be finalized before Allen and his allies can begin collecting signatures in an attempt to put the repeal bill on the November 2018 ballot.  “This brings us one step closer to repealing Jerry Brown’s hugely unpopular gas tax,” Allen said in a statement to reporters.

Becerra’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Becerra’s ballot description hardly mentioned the initiative was intended to repeal the new gas tax, imposed in a highly partisan vote earlier this year by Democrats in the Legislature and Governor Jerry Brown.  Instead, Becerra tried to cast the intention of the initiative as to “reduce transportation funding.”  Why did Becerra prepare a misleading description of the ballot initiative?  Political analysts said that Becerra was illegally attempting to influence voters to oppose the repeal of the Democratic-backed new tax, rather than just describe what the measure really stood for, which is the non-partisan xavier-becerrapurpose for his office’s review of the ballot and title summary.  Democratic lawmakers voted in April to boost gas taxes and vehicle fees to raise $5 billion a year for road repairs.  Starting Nov. 1, gas taxes will rise by $0.12 per gallon and diesel taxes by $0.20, along with new auto registration fees.

The gas tax initiative is not the only case that Becerra has politicized and lost.   Becerra lead the Attorneys General of 15 states and the District of Columbia, who filed their own briefs in opposition to the “travel ban” put in place by President Trump, intended to be a temporary pause in travel from states the Obama Administration had identified as terrorist prone, until immigration authorities could implement greater protections.  Becerra greatly exaggerated the travel pause Order and said it “threatens to rip apart California families, risks their economic well-being and defies centuries of America tradition.”  The legal opposition from Becerra, paid for by California taxpayers, is part of a plan to thwart the Trump Administration from achieving its campaign promises.  According to Becerra, “a number of attorneys general have been in conversations, since before Trump even took office, about doing everything possible to protect the rights of people.” “In terms of the travel ban, it was a matter of trying to make sure we could make a good case that it was unconstitutional and it violated federal law.”  Becerra’s big problem, however, is that the United States Supreme Court rejected his arguments and upheld the “travel ban” Order as constitutional, with few exceptions.

Losing on the gas tax repeal initiative and the Trump travel ban challenge are not expected to dissuade Becerra from continuing to divert and misuse the resources on his legal staff away from a focus on reducing crime in California, to instead advancing partisan progressive Democratic political objectives like keeping taxes high and opposing President Trump at all costs.  Becerra recently announced he is going to sue the Trump Administration to halt building of further border control fencing in California, a case he will also surely lose in future, as federal sovereignty over border control is among the strongest constitutional powers that exist in Federal law.  In the meantime, it is California taxpayers who will get stuck with the legal bills for all of Becerra’s losing cases.

DACA, Debt Ceiling, North Korea explained – Jim Lacy on Australian Broadcasting’s Sunday Show, 9/10/17

In this segment from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Sunday news show “Weekend Breakfast,” California Political Review publisher Jim Lacy discusses the week’s news in Washington, D.C., including the Trump Administration’s DACA announcement, the Hurricane Harvey relief package, North Korea, and Trump’s determination to stem illegal immigration.

“Just Cut Taxes!” Jim Lacy on Fox Business

In this video segment airing on Fox Business News Channel’s “Varney & Company” on August 23, California Political Review publisher Jim Lacy offers his opinions and answers the question about what Senate Republicans and the Trump Administration need to do to get along better by saying “Just Cut Taxes!”

 

Steve Bannon, former Hollywood Producer, Out at White House

President Trump’s controversial chief strategist Steve Bannon is leaving the White House, in another major staff shakeup announced at the close of another tumultuous week in Washington.

The White House confirmed in a brief statement that Bannon, a hardcore populist who often sparred with his West Wing colleagues, would make Friday his last day — just over a year after he joined the Trump presidential campaign.

“White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Steve Bannon have mutually agreed today would be Steve’s last day,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement. “We are grateful for his service and wish him the best.”

For the full story, click here: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/08/18/stephen-bannon-out-at-white-house-source-says.html

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John Cox Did Not Run Against Barack Obama – Contrary to His Claims

John Cox, who is running for Governor of California as a Republican, has been claiming to reporters that he once “ran against Barack Obama for U.S. Senate” in Illinois, and reporters are buying the claim, here in the Los Angeles Times, and here on Politico.com. The Times reported, “Cox, a Republican, in 2003 ran unsuccessfully for U.S. Senate in Illinois against Barack Obama,” and Politico reported “[i]n 2004, he was one of a half-dozen Republican candidates for the Illinois U.S. Senate, a race in which he appeared at a candidate forum alongside Barack Obama, then a state senator, who eventually won the Senate seat. (The two had a brief one-on-one exchange over the merits of the Iraq war.)”  Both statements are untrue, and the source of the misinformation to the reporters was likely Cox himself.

News reports have included a lot of half-baked material and misinformation about Cox.  The Los Angeles Times referred to him as an attorney here: http://www.latimes.com/politics/essential/la-pol-ca-essential-politics-updates-republican-john-cox-enters-race-for-1488926825-htmlstory.html but an “attorney search” of the California Bar website here does not yield a “John H. Cox” or any variation as an attorney licensed to practice in California.  (John Herman Cox is currently licensed to practice law in Illinois, at a registered address in Schaumburg, Illinois, but he is not licensed in California.  See: https://www.iardc.org/ldetail.asp?id=750455360).  Cox is also referred to as a “venture capitalist” in media reports but research indicates his most evident corporate activity was serving as a top financial officer for a potato chip company in Chicago, reported in this 1994 article: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1994-08-26/news/9408260184_1_borden-jays-foods-snack.

Cox appears to be attempting to create a myth about himself that he took on Barack Obama in an election campaign.  But that did not happen.  Rather, Cox is conflating events to apparently gain sympathy with Republican voters who dislike Obama, in order to counter the fact that he has a very poor vote-getting history, running unsuccessfully for Cook County Recorder of Deeds, U.S. Congress, U.S. Senate, and President.  In 2008, Cox gained less than one-tenth of one percent of the vote (0.01%) on the California ballot for president.

Here are the facts about Cox and Barack Obama:

Cox’s Wikipedia page states he ran for Senate in 2002, (not 2003 as misreported by the Times). See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_H._Cox   Wikipedia states Cox lost the Republican primary (which was a closed primary) to Jim Durkin receiving 23% of the vote.  But said another way, Cox actually finished last in that closed primary against the other two Republican candidates, (not a “half-dozen” as misreported by Politico) and in 2002 not 2004 (as misreported by Politico).   The results of the 2002 Republican primary for U.S. Senate are found here:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate_election_in_Illinois,_2002.  The fact is, John Cox ran for U.S. Senate in 2002, and never ran against Barack Obama, who instead ran for U.S. Senate on 2004, in the next election, and one in which Cox did not run for Senate.  Rather, according to this Chicago based website, while Obama was running for U.S. Senate in 2004, Cox was running for Cook County Recorder of Deeds at the same time, a race he lost by a wide margin.

Cox roots his claims to having run against Obama in an alleged “candidate debate” he says he had with Obama in August 2003 at Chicago State University.  But there was no election going on at that time.  An internet records search of Chicago State University does not reveal any corroboration that such a “candidate debate” took place.  Rather, Cox was that summer in serious litigation over his 2002 Senate race the previous year, where the Federal Election Commission had assessed a $22,150 fine on him for failure to properly disclose personal funds he used in his race.  Cox lost his challenge to the fine, reported by the FEC here, and never filed any documents to run for Senate in the next election in 2004.  See http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sdut-recalling-debate-with-candidate-obama-2012sep29-story.html for Cox’s claims about a “candidate debate” with Obama.   Cox still claims to reporters to have been a candidate for Senate at the time of this alleged debate, but he really was not, was not officially a candidate, had filed no paperwork with the Federal Election Commission, and he in fact did not run in 2004, which was the Obama election year.   If Cox was running for Senate in 2003, it was in his own mind, and not reflected in his deeds or supporting facts.  Even the article Cox himself wrote above says he “withdrew” as a candidate before the election – however, there was no election campaign for him to withdraw fromJohn Cox. Yet reporters unfortunately persist in accepting Cox’s highly exaggerated and false claim that he “ran for Senate against Barack Obama.”

 

Nutty John Cox for California Governor?

John CoxJohn Cox was hardly a serious candidate for governor of California when the first UC Berkeley/IGS poll was announced earlier this year in March and gave him, the only Republican listed in the poll, 18 percent of the vote and the prized second spot against Gavin Newsom, suggesting to amateur political observers that he might have a chance to get into a November 2018 Republican vs. Democrat run-off with Newsom, offering the California GOP its first long-shot chance at statewide office in years. The ensuing press reports took Cox seriously. But none of the reporters did much homework on Cox, labeling him positively as a political newcomer or outsider. They all failed to mention he had been on the ballot before in California, with an awful showing. The reporters could have recalled for readers that Cox was surely not a fresh face to our statewide ballot, and that the last time he was on it, he ran for the Republican nomination for president in the February, 2008 primary, and proved a miserable votegetter, barely mustering 3,200 votes statewide, finishing with .01 percent, while both John McCain and Mitt Romney drew over a million votes each.

Cox, a native of Illinois, is a candidate for governor who must NOT be taken seriously. He is a serial candidate, and what older Republican operatives might label a “Harold Stassen.” Stassen once served as governor of Minnesota and was termed a “boy wonder,” but was bit so hard by the political bug that he ran for the GOP nomination for president, unsuccessfully, 9 times in a row, losing every time. Yet Cox differs from Stassen in that Cox has never won any elective office, and he has run plenty of times. He has actually hit a trifecta of losses having run for every federal office one can, losing each time. Cox has run for Cook County Clerk, Congress, and U.S. Senate, all in Illinois, losing all the races, all losses by wide margins.

But in 2008, despite all his previous electoral defeats, Cox decided to run for president as well. He says he contributed $1 million to his campaign, visited all 99 counties in Iowa, campaigned hard in New Hampshire with 14 visits, visited South Carolina 10 times to campaign, and appeared on the ballot in California. During his campaign, he got into an altercation with security at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley because his campaign performance had proven so insignificant that they would not let him in to the presidential debate. Even though he was excluded, he still tried to use a questionable media credential to enter the premises under the ruse he was a fake press operative. His vote-getting prowess was a disaster – he received not one delegate to the Republican National Convention. In major counties in California that will be very important to the governor’s race, like Fresno, for example, he got just 60 votes across the county’s three congressional districts, according to the California Secretary of State’s office.

By June 2017, Cox quickly fell in the gubernatorial race polls, losing 50 percent of his initial support, in the second UC Berkeley/IGS  poll when just one other Republican was added to the mix by the poll authors – this time former Assemblyman David Hadley, who was not an announced candidate for governor at the time he was added to the poll and who has since stated he is not running for the office. The significance of the second poll, with Cox running hard for several months yet dropping from 18 percent to 9 percent as an announced candidate, and Hadley at 7 percent as an unannounced candidate with no campaign, established that Republicans had hardly raised a groundswell of support for Cox in the first poll, rather, Cox made a showing in the first poll in March because he was the only candidate on the poll Republicans had to chose from. As soon as another Republican was put on the list to chose from in the second poll, even someone not running for the office at the time, Cox’s support quickly and very significantly tanked.

Cox’s lack of real support was evidenced again in a poll in Silicon Valley in May where, once again, when listed as the only Republican on the ballot he received 16 percent of the vote, however, when the poll considered “favorability,” Cox garnered a terrible 3 percent, the lowest favorability rate of all the candidates.

When asked, Cox would not tell the San Francisco Chronicle whether or not he voted for Donald Trump for president. While Cox’s strategy may be to separate himself from Trump, who surely is not as popular in California as Gavin Newsom, Cox will not be endearing himself with the thousands of members of Republican volunteer organizations in the state who care about their party’s candidates. Members of the California Republican Woman’s Federated Clubs, for example, who form many local clubs that are the backbone of the state GOP’s grass-roots operations, may or may not have supported Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential race, but they surely all overwhelmingly voted for him as the Republican Party’s candidate for president, even if some of them had to “hold their noses” out of party loyalty. These voters will not be impressed with Cox’s lack of candor about his own presidential vote, which will stink to them of party disloyalty.

The issues Californians and Republicans care about in opinion polls, like being taxed too much, do not appear on Cox’s radar screen. Cox’s central campaign theme is his “Neighborhood Legislature” idea, to expand the California Senate and Assembly to 12,000 members. It is truly a nutty idea that has no support in opinion polls. While the state Legislature truly is in need of reform, like making itself a part-time body, world history tells us increasing its size to that of a small coastal city is not going to improve policy. There were also thousands of members of the Soviet Union’s legislative body, far too many, intentionally, to actually make decisions, and the result was the concentration of power in a small committee known as the Politburo, which established a “dictatorship of the proletariat.” We are close enough as it is today with near dictatorship of Democratic control in Sacramento, to just add thousands more people to the legislative ranks.

What California needs is some political balance, and if the Republican Party can settle on a single, strong candidate to run for governor in a field of many Democrats, there is indeed a long-shot chance a united GOP could get their candidate into a run-off with a Democrat and then see what happens. The fact is Maryland, Massachusetts and Illinois, all deeply “blue” Democratic states, currently have Republican governors, elected to balance Democratic control in the state. It would be a tough order for the GOP to fulfill, but not impossible, as long as Republicans end up with a candidate with a much better vote-getting history, and who runs on issues voters actually care about, than nutty John Cox.

 

Jim Lacy on Trump’s First Six Months as President – VIDEO

In this clip from ABC-TV’s “Weekend Breakfast” (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) airing July 23, California Political Review publisher Jim Lacy responds to reporter’s questions about the presidential pardon power, the Russia investigation, and explains President Trump’s most meaningful accomplishments in his first six months in office.

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