One of life’s truisms, up there with “pitching wins championships” and “yes, but it’s a dry heat” is that elections are won and lost by voter turnout. So in the final weekend before the election, contested campaigns up and down California will rally their troops with a last round of events and door knocking to try persuade voters.
With their eyes on a dozen different races that will cement the Legislature’s power dynamics, Democratic legislative leadership will be working to assist their vulnerable incumbents or hopeful challengers. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Paramount, has a full schedule this weekend – he’ll be stumping for Sabrina Cervantes, Abigail Medina and Cheryl Brown on Saturday and then Al Muratsuchi and Sharon Quirk-Silva on Sunday – while Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, will drop in to boost Jim Beall, Bill Dodd and Cathleen Galgiani on Saturday before heading south to promote challengers Anthony Portantino and Josh Newman on Sunday.
On the Republican side, Senate Minority Leader Jean Fuller, R-Bakersfield, will be calling and walking for current Assembly members and Senate hopefuls Ling Ling Chang and Scott Wilk. Assembly Republican Leader Chad Mayes, R-Yucca Valley, hadn’t finalized his plans but will be diving into targeted districts.
Naturally, the two Democrats seeking a U.S. Senate seat will be active, too. Attorney General Kamala Harris, busing around the state for the final leg of her push, will join rallies for top Democratic Assembly hopefuls Cheryl Cook-Kallio (Friday afternoon in Pleasanton) and Muratsuchi (Sunday in Torrance). Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Orange, will be in southern California.
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On the presidential side, volunteers from around California will journey across the border to swing-state Nevada, with some voyages organized by ideological allies like organized labor and environmentalists. A Sacramento Democratic Party phone bank today for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton will feature top Clinton surrogate Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Los Angeles. A Saturday Hillary for California event in Los Angeles will feature Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez, D-Los Angeles. With an emphasis on ballot initiatives, groups focused on galvanizing immigrant voters plan to fan out across 19 different counties.
Closer to home, Sacramento Mayor-Elect Darrell Steinberg will pitch in at a Saturday rally for imperiled incumbent Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, whom Harris has also promoted. Bera’s Republican opponent, Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, will be working the phones and encouraging volunteers at his Fair Oaks campaign headquarters.
BY THE NUMBERS: 18,251,826 is the record-breaking number of Californians who are now registered to vote. Now let’s see if they do so.
WORTH REPEATING: “That's change even this South Sider can believe in.”
-President Barack Obama, a White Sox fan, reacts to the Cubs winning it all.
TAKING INITIATIVE: The Field Poll looked at 10 of the 17 ballot measures. Here are the results, with a separate take on the marijuana measure, Proposition 64. Here are quick voting guides to all the ballot measures and the Harris-Sanchez Senate race.
MORE INITIATIVE: We’re getting down to the wire for ballot measures too, and today features numerous public pushes. Gov. Jerry Brown will continue fighting the revenue bond restricting Proposition 53 in San Francisco during a 9:30 a.m. event with Mayor Ed Lee and union officials outside Laborers International Union Hall. Orange County law enforcement and elected officials, including San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Ventura County District Attorney Greg Totten, will denounce Brown’s parole-altering Proposition 57 outside Santa Ana’s Old County Courthouse at 10 a.m. And backers of boosting the tobacco tax via Proposition 56 will at noon deliver an oversize invoice, representing tobacco-induced medical costs, to offices used by Altria’s lobbyists in Sacramento.
THIRD WAY: While the Democrats and Republicans are revving into high gear for their final push, the Libertarian ticket is also making a last appeal to voters. Presidential nominee and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson will host a rally this evening at the Mirage Banquet Hall in Sacramento, though he would have to claim a huge swath of Clinton-inclined voters to alter what looks likely to be a California landslide for the Democratic nominee. The latest Field Poll shows Johnson garnering around four percent of the vote here.
CELEBRATIONS: Happy birthday to Sen. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, who turns 42 on Saturday, and to Sen. Richard Roth, D-Riverside, who celebrates his 66th on Sunday.