Politics columns & Blogs

Dan Walters

Can California become a player in presidential nominations?

California politicians hope the fifth time will be the charm on moving California’s presidential primary earlier in the year and making the state more relevant to choosing presidential nominees. However, past efforts have failed and there’s no reason to believe this one will be any more successful.

Dan Walters

Will your income taxes in California go up under Trump?

California may have dodged a bullet on repeal of Obamacare, but another conflict pitting California against the Republican-controlled federal government looms. President Donald Trump and Congress are talking about overhauling the federal tax system, and two of the notions floating around Washington could have a big effect on the state.

Dan Walters

California GOP continues its plunge into irrelevance

Republicans once dominated California’s politics, but over last two decades have become increasingly irrelevant as California became a very blue state. Latest voter registration data indicates that voters without a party preference could outnumber Republicans by next year’s elections.

Dan Walters

How far can California go as it becomes immigrant sanctuary?

California voters – and their politicians – once supported a crackdown on illegal immigration. But times and sentiments have changed, and now the state is resisting President Donald Trump on the issue. But how far can California go, and could it create a backlash that would hurt prospects for immigration reform?

Dan Walters

Politicos punch holes rather than repeal old liquor law

A California liquor control law passed decades ago is still on the books, barring business relationships among various levels of the alcoholic beverage industry. The law is obsolete, but instead of repealing it, legislators force those running afoul of it to seek case-by-case exemptions.

Dan Walters

Brown has been unwilling to update political reform law

When he ran for governor the first time in 1974, then-Secretary of State Jerry Brown made political reform the cornerstone of his campaign, particularly a ballot measure, Proposition 9. Since returning to the governorship after a 28-year absence, however, Brown has been very reluctant to update his signature measure.

Dan Walters

California’s politicians rap Trump as they seek money

California’s Democratic politicians have found much in Donald Trump to criticize, pledging to protect the state from the new president’s policies. However, they are simultaneously asking Trump for more money, which means they want the federal government, whose budget is chronically in deficit, to borrow more money.

Dan Walters

Jerry Brown would undermine a spending limit he sponsored

As he began his second run for president in 1979, Jerry Brown co-sponsored a ballot measure, Proposition 4, that imposed a strict spending limit on state and local governments. Now, 38 years later, he wants to undermine the Gann Limit, as it’s called, by exempting $22 billion in state spending from its provisions.

Dan Walters

California vs. Washington: Smog a new battleground

California is fighting with the Republican-controlled federal government over multiple issues, and smog is one of the newest. President Donald Trump apparently wants to scale back federal mileage standards for cars and California wants to retain higher standards. If California persists, it may have to seek a waiver from the Trump administration.

Videos

Dan Walters: Big election, but most people 'could care less'

The Sacramento Bee's Dan Walters is excited that for the first time in a long time Californians were actually treated to a full blown presidential campaign, with all nominees from both parties campaigning up and down the state. Despite California voters actually being treated like they mattered, it still seems as if most people 'could care less.'
David Siders The Sacramento Bee
Dan Walters: Big election, but most people 'could care less' 1:07

Dan Walters: Big election, but most people 'could care less'

Caleb Sears' aunt, grandmother confront an immovable force 1:50

Caleb Sears' aunt, grandmother confront an immovable force

What the gusty afternoon in Sacramento looks, sounds like 0:30

What the gusty afternoon in Sacramento looks, sounds like

Helmet cam footage of Sacramento Fire rescue of cat stuck in tree for 3 days 1:01

Helmet cam footage of Sacramento Fire rescue of cat stuck in tree for 3 days