Happy holidays! With Christmas just around the corner, business at the Capitol has slowed to a crawl, so the AM Alert will be taking a hiatus until the new year.
But before we allow ourselves to fall into a popcorn-induced coma (thanks, Dan Walters!), here’s a quick look back at the political stories that captured readers’ attention in 2015.
It’s no surprise that the enormously controversial law mandating vaccines for schoolchildren dominates the list, but Capitol Alert’s most-read article of the year was actually...
In late February, Huntington Beach attorney Matt McLaughlin spent $200 to propose a ballot measure that would authorize killing gays and lesbians by “bullets to the head,” or “any other convenient method.” The so-called Sodomite Suppression Act prompted a statewide outcry, with lawmakers requesting that the State Bar investigate McLaughlin’s fitness to practice law and Attorney General Kamala Harris asking to be relieved of her official duty to write a title and summary. The initiative was ultimately squashed in court before McLaughlin could begin collecting signatures, but its impact will live on. In an effort to discourage far-fetched proposals and cover more of the state’s cost of preparing them for signature-gathering, the Legislature passed a bill this session that will raise the filing fee tenfold, the first increase since 1943. Gov. Jerry Brown signed it into law in September, over objections that it would further disenfranchise ordinary citizens in the political process.
The rest of the top 15 were:
7. Jerry Brown signs California vaccine bill (June 30)
10. Bernie Sanders gaining on Hillary Clinton in California (October 6)
11. California senator says ‘welfare queen’ law must go (February 22)
12. Kamala Harris seeks to block ‘kill the gays’ ballot measure (March 15)
13. Could Fort Bragg be compelled to change name? (July 7)
14. California vaccine bill approved by committee on second try (April 22)