Gov. Brown Vetoes Bill to Limit Cell Phone Searches

From the SF Chronicle:

SAN FRANCISCO — Frustrated by Gov. Jerry Brown’s veto, a Bay Area lawmaker says it will be at least another year before he can try again to require police to get a search warrant before looking at the contents of cell phones they seize from people they arrest.

Legislative rules prohibit reintroducing the bill in 2012, the second year of the current two-year session, Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, said Monday. Despite rebuffs from the governor and the courts, he said, the issue isn’t going away.

Leno’s SB914 would have largely overturned a state Supreme Court ruling in January that let police open and examine the cell phones of people they arrest without a warrant.

(Read Full Article.)

New California Laws Are Lax on Illegal Immigrants

From the SJ Mercury News:

As states such as Alabama and Georgia make waves with a hard-line approach to illegal immigration, California took a leap in the other direction this weekend when Gov. Jerry Brown signed a host of bills that make the nation’s biggest state one of the most accepting of immigrants living here illegally.

Some saw the flurry of new laws, especially the California Dream Act, as a rejection of the political fervor against illegal immigration in other parts of the country.

(Read Full Article.)

Deadline Approaches Effort to Overturn SB 48

From the Sac Bee:

With just one day left to circulate petitions, organizers of an effort to repeal a new law requiring that California students learn about the historical contributions of gay and lesbian individuals have told supporters that they “would need a miracle to qualify this referendum.”

The Pacific Justice Institute and an arm of Capitol Resource Institute have been leading an effort to overturn Senate Bill 48, which requires public school instruction to include the role and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals, people with disabilities and members of different cultural groups. They face a Wednesday deadline for submitting to election officials the roughly 505,000 valid voter signatures needed to place a referendum of the law on the ballot.

Despite days of emails calling for a final push in the signature gathering campaign, referendum organizers told supporters in an early morning email that “it is doubtful we will get the number of signatures we need to qualify” the proposed referendum.

(Read Full Article.)

GOP Senators Unite to Defeat Obama’s Jobs Bill

From the Sac Bee:

WASHINGTON — United against Barack Obama, Senate Republicans voted Tuesday night to kill the jobs package the president had spent weeks campaigning for across the country, a stinging loss at the hands of lawmakers opposed to stimulus-style spending and a tax increase on the very wealthy.

The $447 billion plan died on a 50-49 tally that garnered a majority of the 100-member Senate but fell well short of the 60 votes needed to keep the bill alive. The tally had been 51-48, but Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., switched his vote to “nay” so that he could force a future revote.

The demise of Obama’s jobs package was expected, despite his campaign-style efforts to swing the public behind it. The White House and leaders in Congress were already moving on to alternative ways to address the nation’s painful 9.1 percent unemployment, including breaking the legislation into smaller, more digestible pieces and approving long-stalled trade bills.

(Read Full Article.)

Gov. Chris Christie Endorses Mitt Romney

From the LA Times:

Just one week after announcing he would not run for president, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is endorsing Mitt Romney for the Republican nomination, sources confirm.

Christie will attend Tuesday night’s Republican debate in New Hampshire as Romney’s guest. The Romney campaign had announced the former Massachusetts governor would address supporters this afternoon with a “special guest.”

(Read Full Article.)

Gov. Brown Prohibits Californians from Openly Carrying Handguns

From the Bay Citizen:

Hours after Gov. Jerry Brown announced he had signed a bill to prohibit Californians from openly carrying unloaded handguns, law enforcement officials and Bay Area activists on both sides of the issue were divided about the newly passed legislation.

AB 144 bans the open carrying of handguns in public places or in vehicles, and makes the act a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison or a maximum $1,000 fine.

(Read Full Article.)

Cain Surges, Nearly Ties Romney for Lead in GOP Preferences

From Gallup:

Republicans’ support for Herman Cain has surged to 18%, their support for Rick Perry has sagged to 15%, and their support for Mitt Romney remains relatively stable at 20%. However, Romney’s support is matched by the 20% of Republicans who are unsure which candidate they will back for the Republican nomination in 2012.

(Read Full Article.)

CA Redistricting Means Lawmakers May Need to Move

From the Sac Bee:

For some sitting legislators, preparing to run for re-election in 2012 includes packing up boxes and hunting for a new home.

California’s new district lines, drawn for the first time by an independent redistricting commission, have shaken up the political landscape for next year’s election. As a result, candidates and incumbents across the state are “diving and dodging” into districts that will give them the best shot at victory, said Paul Mitchell, a Democratic consultant who has tracked the redistricting process.

(Real Full Article.)

Gov. Brown Expands Access to Sterile Syringes for Drug Users

From the LA Times:

Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday signed two bills that will expand access to sterile syringes for drug users in an effort to combat the spread of hepatitis C and HIV.

The first bill, SB41, written by Sen. Leland Yee (D-San Francisco), allows people to buy syringes at pharmacies without a prescription. California was one of the few states where this was illegal, other than a few pilot program areas.

The second bill, introduced by Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley), allows the state to authorize needle exchange programs in areas deemed high risk for the spread of disease.

(Read Full Article.)

California’s Quarterly Tax Revenue Falls Below Projections

From Bloomberg Businesweek:

Oct. 10 (Bloomberg) — California’s revenue for the fiscal year that began three months ago has fallen $705 million below what Governor Jerry Brown and Democrats projected, approaching a level that may trigger automatic university spending cuts and higher community college fees.

September revenue came in $301.6 million below estimates, Controller John Chiang, a Democrat, said in a report today. July was $538.8 million less than forecast, Chiang said Aug. 9. Revenue in August was $135 million more than expected.

The $86 billion general-fund spending plan Brown signed in June included a series of cuts activated if higher revenue doesn’t materialize. The first, if the shortfall is $1 billion, would trim University of California and California State University budgets each by $100 million and increase community- college fees by $10 million.

(Read Full Article.)