Jerry Brown shapes the California Supreme Court with the nomination of Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar.

In an op-ed piece in the New York Times today, Sen. Charles Schumer suggests that California-style top-two primary can save the country, or at least its political system. He very well could be right.

Death penalty opponents might be heartened by a federal judge’s decision declaring California’s capital punishment unconstitutional. But the decision by U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney last week is less a victory for abolitionists than it is a condemnation of California officials’ mishandling of capital punishment.

Assemblyman John A. Pérez deserves a thank-you from Californians for having the good sense to call off a recount Friday of the votes cast for state controller in the June primary. If it had gone on much longer, the spectacle could have had an impact on the outcome of the November election for controller.

The size of the water bond might be relatively easy to settle. Perhaps more complicated would be how to spend whatever money is earmarked to aid the Delta ecosystem.

California might no longer be suitable for the brown bear; it’s just not the same state as it was 100 years ago.

Six weeks after Obama called it a humanitarian crisis, the federal government still has no coordinated response.

No matter how talented a public official may be, building in a reward for getting fired is a troubling trend.

The loss of so many lives should prompt tougher action against Russia’s aggression in Ukraine.

New rules make overwatering a crime – for everyone but the agriculture industry. That’s not fair.

Perhaps averting another standoff with Democrats, the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives took a small step earlier this week by allocating an additional $10 billion to continue to paying for freeway projects nationwide.

Proposition 49 is a cynical measure that will clutter the November ballot.

Presidential rivals agree to abide by result of an internationally supervised audit.

She now plans to recuse herself on Mather Field votes, but Fair Political Practices Commission should look at her past votes.

Citigroup pays a $7 billion settlement and its stock rises, of course.

El Papa is urging “the international community to pay attention to this challenge” and to provide protection for the some 50,000 kids from Mexico and Central America detained by U.S.

Dealing with mentally ill people is counterintuitive to much of the standard cop training. An officers’ most persuasive tool for most people, the threat of force, can incite someone who has broken with reality.

California’s $300 billion public employee pension fund reported the upbeat news that its rate of return exceeded 18 percent in the fiscal year that ended last month. But happy days are hardly here again for the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, or for taxpayers who must make good on government pensions.

Violators don’t face serious consequences. State water officials are proposing to change that. It’s about time.

Banda comes to Sacramento for the wrong reasons. But perhaps he will stay and fight for the right ones.

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