Xavier Becerra Loses Yet Another Lawsuit Against Trump

From San Francisco Chronicle

A federal judge on Wednesday denied an attempt by California to force the Trump administration to pay billions of dollars to insurance companies to subsidize health plans for low-income Americans.

The payments, known as cost-sharing subsidies, were established under the Affordable Care Act to reimburse insurers for offering lower deductibles and co-payments for some consumers who buy health plans on the insurance exchange. The payments are one of two types of ACA subsidies that lower the cost of health care for millions of Americans; the other type helps consumers pay for insurance premiums.

Read the full story here: http://digital.olivesoftware.com/Olive/ODN/SanFranciscoChronicle/shared/ShowArticle.aspx?doc=HSFC%2F2017%2F10%2F26&entity=Ar00111&sk=A0749618&mode=text

Xavier Becerra

GOP ramps up effort to repeal California gas tax increase

As reported by CBS8.com:

Republicans’ latest effort to repeal California’s upcoming gas tax increase got a boost Wednesday from members of Congress and GOP gubernatorial candidate John Cox, who said he would spend “significant” money to help put the initiative on next year’s ballot.

“We can’t keep making this state unaffordable for working people and expect people to stay,” Cox said at a news conference at the California Republican Party’s headquarters.

It’s the second Republican initiative aimed at repealing the tax increase, passed by lawmakers this year to generate $52 billion over 10 years for road and bridge repairs. The gas tax will go up by 12 cents per gallon in November, and diesel taxes will spike as well. The other repeal effort is backed by Assemblyman Travis Allen — Cox’s competitor for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. Both initiatives aim to repeal the tax increase, but the Cox-backed effort will also include a constitutional amendment that requires any future gas and car tax increases to win voter approval.

Republicans view the tax increase as a highly unpopular move that will draw voters from across California to the polls in the midterm election. Democrats plan to aggressively target seven California Republicans who serve in districts that voted Democratic in the presidential election. …

Click here to read the full article

Gas Tax Senator Recall Clears Legal Hurdle

As reported by the L.A. Times: 

Of the more than 70,600 voters who signed petitions to hold a recall vote on state Sen. Josh Newman of Fullerton, only 849 asked that their signatures be withdrawn by the deadline, clearing a major hurdle for an election on whether to oust the Democratic lawmaker, officials said Tuesday.

Opponents of the recall needed to get more than 7,000 voters to withdraw their signatures to deprive supporters of the 63,593 signatures needed to put the measure on the ballot, under a new system approved recently by the Democratic-controlled Legislature that slows down the process.

“Sen. Josh Newman has spent months lying to his constituents by claiming people were duped into signing the recall petition against him, and with today’s tally, he has been unmasked again as a pathological liar who is unfit to hold office,” said Carl DeMaio, a Republican activist heading the recall drive. “We eagerly look forward to voters having a chance to vote him out for his lies and his decision to increase the gas tax.”

Newman won a close contest last November in a district formerly represented by a Republican. He was targeted for recall by Republican activists for voting in April for a $52-billion transportation plan that raises gas taxes and imposes a new annual vehicle fee. A successful recall would deprive Democrats of a supermajority in the Senate. …

Click here to read the full article from the L.A. Times

Supreme Court drops Hawaii Challenge to Travel Ban Case

From Washington Times:

The Supreme Court issued an order Tuesday dismissing Hawaii’s challenge to President Trump’s refugee policy, as encapsulated in his earlier “extreme vetting” executive order, saying the case is moot because the 120-refugee pause has now expired.

The justices acted on the same day that the 120 period expired.

Mr. Trump is expected to announce an updated policy later Tuesday.

US Vice President Mike Pence (L) and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R) applaud as US President Donald J. Trump (C) arrives to deliver his first address to a joint session of Congress from the floor of the House of Representatives in Washington, DC, USA, 28 February 2017.  / AFP / POOL / JIM LO SCALZO        (Photo credit should read JIM LO SCALZO/AFP/Getty Images)

“Because those provisions of the Order have ‘expired by [their] own terms,’ the appeal no longer presents a ‘live case or controversy,’” the justices said.

California unions brace for a Supreme Court loss

California labor leaders sound almost apocalyptic when they describe a looming Supreme Court case that many of them concede likely will cost them members and money.

“Everything is at stake,” says Yvonne Walker, president of Service Employees International Local 1000, state government’s largest union.

“It’s a blatant political attack,” says Eric Heins, the leader of the massive California Teachers Association.

“That’s a way that the corporations are trying to take our legs out from under us,” says Kim Cowart, a state registered nurse and SEIU union leader.

They’re alarmed by Janus vs. AFSCME, the Illinois lawsuit that challenges the rights of unions in 22 states to collect so-called “fair share” fees from employees who do not want to join bargaining groups but may benefit from representation. That practice has been legal and common since 1977, when the Supreme Court favored union arguments for fair-share fees in a lawsuit against the Detroit Board of Education. …

Click here to read the full article from the Sacramento Bee

Bannon Receives Three Standing Ovations at GOP Convention Keynote

Steve Bannon(Orange County, CA)  Breitbart News Executive Chairman and former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon delivered a fiery keynote address to about 500 people at the opening dinner of the California Republican Party’s Fall Convention Friday night, praising President Trump and declaring war on the GOP establishment.

Stepping out from behind the podium, comfortably walking about the stage, Bannon gave a forty-minute-long speech covering a myriad of issues that began with effusive praise of President Trump, the importance of winning and how victories beget victories, and about the great challenge ahead in taking on the, “corporatists, lobbyists, consultants, and the politicians they control.”

In referring to his work with President Trump, Bannon said early in his remarks, “I’ve had the honor of being the CEO of his campaign, the chief strategist in the white house — and now I’m proud to say his wingman outside.”

“Donald Trump has been an existential threat to the system,” Bannon declared to overwhelming applause from the audience.

Bannon went on to talk about the importance of the recent victory of Judge Roy Moore in the Republican U.S. Senate runoff election in Alabama.

“We had to prove something,” Bannon said. “That the donor class and Mitch McConnell’s money doesn’t mean anything. They spent $32 million dollars against $2 million from Judge Roy Moore.  Judge Moore won 45-55.  It was the politics of personal destruction.  It was against Judge Moore and his wife…  And you know what they said his big crime was… he put the ten commandments in the city hall… The underpinnings of Judeo-Christian thought.”

Bannon talked quite a bit about the pieces of the winning coalition that won the Presidency for Trump and the Alabama GOP Senate nomination for Roy Moore – populists, nationalists, and Christians.

Bannon reminded the convention attendees that it is time to win in Washington, D.C.  He said that if we are going to do that we need unity on the right – and if Republicans can’t get together on Capitol Hill and actually get things done, “We’ll be run out of office, and deserve it.”

He said his vision for a united conservative movement is going to be executed by a “grassroots army.”

“It’s about one thing – are you a citizen of the United States of America?” Bannon asked the audience.  “Economic nationalism is not what’s going to drive us apart, it’s what’s going to bring us together.  GDP isn’t everything.  We are not an economy. We are a country.  We have a social fabric.  I’m a free market capitalist.  That’s the underpinnings of our society.  Economic nationalism means ensuring that jobs that we have allowed to go to Asia come back to the United States.”

Bannon said that American citizens should have a preference for jobs and economic opportunity.  And that people should have to compete against foreign labor and illegal alien labor.  He also decried Europe as being a protectorate of the United States, making no effort to protect themselves.  He said that this is changing, “It’s not that we are being isolationists. We have to start thinking like adults… We have to stop worrying about these global institutions… The rules-based international order has worked for everybody except the united states of America.”

“President Bush embarrassed himself,” Bannon said as he offered a stinging critique of President George W. Bush after the former President’s recent public criticisms of President Trump. “It is clear he didn’t understand anything he was talking about.  He had no idea whether he was coming or going.  Just like when he was President of the United States. There has not been a more destructive presidency than George Bush’s.”

Bannon’s strong criticism of Bush was met with a lot of applause in the GOP audience – which drew a surprised look from those in the room who clearly were not pleased someone speaking ill of the former Republican President.

It wasn’t just President Bush who was singled out by Bannon for his recent remarks, Bannon also was critical of U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ).  While careful to praise McCain for his service to the country, he said that McCain’s speech this week was “nothing but happy talk.”

Former President Bush and Senator McCain were both booed by the Republican audience.

At one point, Bannon also heckled Karl Rove. He said that he’d like to insult the establishment Republican consultant for his recent less-than-kind op-ed attacking the Breitbart Executive Chairman in the Wall Street Journal, but he “doesn’t like punching down.”

Bannon was also highly critical of China and President Xi Jinping. Bannon said that the Chinese, “have run the tables on us” – and that the United States has become a tributary state to China.”

Being here in California, Bannon targeted the tech leaders in the Silicon Valley, “We are going to have to worry about the Lords of technology in the Silicon Valley.  You’ve got a very dangerous thing going on in this state.”

In talking to the blue state crowd of Californians before him, Bannon said, “Winning matters.  You’re not here to waste your time.  You don’t want moral victories.  You want victory victories.  It’s time in California we started having some victories.

Bannon critiqued the actions of the left-wing Democrats in Sacramento and their making California a sanctuary state, warning everyone present: “You are a sanctuary state.  Trust me if you don’t roll this back — ten or fifteen years from now the folks from the Silicon Valley and the progressive left in this state are going to try and secede from this state.”

He went on to tell beleaguered California Republicans, “The resistance is not the people you see outside,” referring to the small group of protesters.  That’s actually, quite frankly, going to help Republicans” – saying that they will push the Democrats to the left.

In his final statement to the crowd, Bannon closed by admonishing the crowd, “It’s always darkest before the dawn…  The permanent political class who control this country and the progressive Democrats who sit on the other side of that are not just going to give this country back.  You’re going to have to take it back!”

When Bannon entered the dining room he was greeted with applause, a theme that continued with more applause throughout his forty minute speech at this dinner packed with GOP donors, activists and smattering of elected officeholders.  One notable dinner guest who came in from out of town was controversial former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, of Arizona.  While Orange County is represented by four GOP Members of Congress – Ed Royce (R-Fullerton), Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa), Darrell Issa (R-Vista) and Mimi Walters (R-Irvine) – none of them were in attendance.

As Bannon’s remarks concluded, the buzz and energy in the room were palpable.  Reactions to the speech were effusive:

“He talked to us like we were adults and I think that terrifies the elitists,” said Jan Leja, the head of the San Bernardino County Republican Party. “And he’s not afraid to talk to us like adults and I think that was refreshing.”

Jim Lacy, a delegate from Orange County said that “Everything that Steve Bannon said about the leadership of President Trump was right on the mark – and his honest predictions about the long-term detrimental impacts of California becoming a sanctuary state.”

Grover Norquist, the President of Americans for Tax Reform, who was in the audience told Breitbart News, “It’s could have been a complaint speech but it wasn’t – it was an action speech — it was a call to war.”

Security was tight for the dinner – with all delegates and guests forced into two single-file lines and through metal detectors. Guests paid $100 for a plated dinner of filet mignon, or $300 to attend a VIP reception and the dinner, and get a photo with Bannon.  It was reported that protestors from the group Indivisible, that purports to be dedicated to preserving the “progressive ecosystem,” would be holding a major protest outside of the hotel.  That said, only a small handful of people showed up, and were dwarfed by a large contingent of officers from the Anaheim Police Department.

Until August, Bannon served in the Trump White House, and he is now spearheading a national effort to draft primary challengers to establishment Republican lawmakers.

As the Breitbart News Network previously reported Bannon has started meeting with notable Republican donors, many of whom remain frustrated by the Republican establishment’s inability to pass significant legislation such as repealing and replacing Obamacare, tax reform, and funding a southern border wall.

Bannon’s remarks opened a convention that will also feature speeches from Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton and Fox News’ Jeanine Pirro and House Republican Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

He received three standing ovations. One when he was introduced, the second at the start of his address, and again upon conclusion.

Jon Fleischman is the Politics Editor for Breitbart California. You can follow him on Twitter here.

This article was originally published by Breitbart.com/California

Gov. Brown Signs Bill Allowing Felons To Vote In Jail

Gov. Jerry Brown has agreed to restore the voting rights of convicted felons serving time in county jails.

The bill that Brown announced signing Wednesday also reinstates the voting eligibility of felons on probation or under community supervision beginning next year. It does not affect those in state or federal prisons.

AB2466 stems from California’s criminal justice realignment, which led to some people convicted of low-level felonies serving time in county jails.

Republican lawmakers say felons should not be allowed to cast ballots while serving a sentence, with Sen. Patricia Bates of Laguna Niguel saying it compromises the integrity of elections. …

Click here to read the full story from the Associated Press

 

California Tells Pet Stores Their Dogs and Cats Must Be Rescues

In a blow to commercial animal breeders and brokers, California pet stores will soon have to get their puppies, kittens and rabbits from shelters and rescue centers only.

Individuals can still buy from private breeders. But beginning in January 2019, it will be illegal for stores to do so. Violators will face a fine of $500.

The bill, A.B. 485, had strong support from several animal welfare organizations, which cheered it as a blow to “puppy mills” and “kitten factories” that mass produce animals for sale, often in inhumane conditions. It was written by two California Assembly members, Patrick O’Donnell and Matt Dababneh, both Democrats, and signed into law on Friday by Gov. Jerry Brown.

California is the first state to pass such legislation, though it is following dozens of its own cities and jurisdictions, which have passed similar measures on a smaller scale. …

Click here to read the full story from the New York Times

GOP Tax Reform Boosts Wages According to Boston University Researchers

TAX REFORM UPDATE!!

Researchers at Boston University Agree!

In a study published this morning analyzing the economic and revenue impacts of the Republican “Unified Framework” Tax Plan, researchers found:

  • The new Republican tax plan raises GDP by between 3 and 5 percent and real wages by between 4 and 7 percent.
  • This translates into roughly $3,500 annually, on average, per working American household.
  • The source of the increase in U.S. output and real wages is the UF plan’s reduction in the U.S. marginal effective corporate tax rate from 34.6 percent to 18.6 percent.
  • According to their model, the U.S. corporate income tax represents a hidden tax on U.S. workers.

Click here to go directly to the study

Corporate Tax Reform and Wages: Theory and Evidence

New analysis from the Council of Economic Advisers proves:

  • Reducing the statutory federal corporate tax rate from 35 to 20 percent would increase the average household income in the United States by, very conservatively, $4,000 annually.
  • The increases recur each year, and the estimated total value of corporate tax reform for the average U.S. household is therefore substantially higher than $4,000 à The most optimistic estimates from literature show wages could boost more than $9,000 for the average household.
    • A 15 percent corporate rate cut could increase average household incomes from $83,143 in 2016 to between $87,520 and $92,222.
    • Median household income — meaning earnings for more of a typical household — would rise from $59,039 to between $62,147 and $65,486.
  • Literature finds countries with low corporate tax rates have seen higher wage gains than countries with high corporate tax rates.

Click here to link to study in its entirety

Kaepernick collusion claim hard to prove

A grievance filed by former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick says his inability to find work, despite six solid seasons in the National Football League, is because of collusion against him by NFL owners — with President Trump’s encouragement — for kneeling during the national anthem to protest police violence against African Americans.

When a skilled professional athlete is suddenly and persistently unemployed while his former team flounders and rivals make do with less-accomplished reserves, blaming his status on a collective freeze-out does not seem far-fetched. But in the legal forum that will judge Kaepernick’s complaint, it can be extremely difficult to prove.

Just ask Barry Bonds.

After his last season with the Giants in 2007, the year he broke Hank Aaron’s career home run record of 755 on his way to final total of 762, Bonds went unsigned for 2008. He couldn’t get a taker even when he offered to play for the Major League Baseball minimum of $500,000, one-32nd of his previous salary. At the time, he was facing a federal indictment on charges of lying to a federal grand jury about steroid use, charges that eventually led to an obstruction-of-justice conviction that was overturned on appeal. …

Click here to read the full story from the San Francisco Chronicle