A death knell for bipartisanship: Republicans are putting Neil Gorsuch on the Supreme Court via a simple majority, thanks to the “nuclear option.” Now it seems just a matter of time before the new rules cover controversial legislation.
Sites Reservoir gets an important ally: If ever there were an argument for construction of Sites Reservoir – which is to say, more water storage – this winter’s epic rain is it. The project to the west of the Sacramento River is poised to get support from Southern California. The rest of us should welcome it.
Ben Boychuk: California Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s attack on freedom of the press is focused on a despised minority: a pair of pro-life activists who sought to expose and undermine a holy liberal institution, Planned Parenthood.
Molly Selvin: With Rep. Paul Ryan’s approach dead for now, and since President Donald Trump seems to have ruled out prosecuting women, physicians could well be the target of anti-abortion lawmakers.
Joel Bellman: Major advertisers reportedly have pulled their ads from the “The O’Reilly Factor” in the wake of a New York Times story that Bill O’Reilly and Fox News have quietly settled five lawsuits for $13 million over sexual harassment allegations. But friends of free speech ought not to be celebrating.
Jonas Minton: The Oroville Dam emergency shows that California cannot ignore the multiple safety and financial threats to one if its most important water infrastructures.
Stockton Record: Calaveras County and medical marijuana have become bedfellows. An election scheduled for May about the future of the “business” will not happen. But, ultimately, the county will have to make a big decision.
East Bay Times: Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf says she “went through the roof” when she heard last week about emails showing the fire department knew for at least 2 1/2 months about safety problems at the site of last week’s fire that killed four. Well, it’s about time she got angry.
San Diego Union Tribune: House intelligence committee chair Devin Nunes’ decision to step aside for now and let someone else lead his panel’s probe of Russia’s attempts to influence the presidential election and Russia’s links to the Trump campaign is the first good decision the Tulare Republican has made in a long time. The new leader of House’s Russia probe must rise to the occasion.
Los Angeles Times: For 40 years, the advancement of human rights around the globe has been a pillar of U.S. foreign policy. But President Donald Trump, disturbingly and deliberately, has chosen to move away from that stance.
Orange County Register: Kudos to President Trump and Congress for rolling back burdensome Obama-era regulations. But Internet privacy rule should have been saved.
Charlotte Observer: Let’s take a moment from the latest Republican attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act for some breaking news: Obamacare is popular.
Lexington Herald Leader: Gov. Matt Bevin has a credibility problem of his own making. Bevin too often retreats to “trust me” when questions arise that he doesn’t want to answer.
Kansas City Star: One of the most heartening pieces of news out of the heartland this week has got to be the story about the high school students in Pittsburg, Kan., whose investigation into the credentials and work experience of their just-hired principal led to her resignation.
Dana Milbank: For the second day in a row, President Donald Trump blamed the Obama administration for Tuesday’s chemical weapons attack by Syria’s Assad regime and, for good measure, he blamed his predecessor for the deal with Iran. No, Mr. President, we’re the ones who inherited a mess. Problems are piling up quickly, and Trump is pointing his finger everywhere but inward.
Charles Krauthammer: Killing the filibuster for Supreme Court nominations (the so-called nuclear option) yields two gratifications: It allows a superb young conservative jurist to ascend to the seat once held by Antonin Scalia. And it constitutes condign punishment for the reckless arrogance of Harry Reid and his erstwhile Democratic majority.
Charles M. Blow: We may sometimes think that the absurdity of President Donald Trump’s endless stream of contradictions and lies ends at the nation’s borders, but it doesn’t. The world is watching, and the world is full of dangerous men who see killing as a means of maintaining and exerting power. They see in Trump a novice and know-nothing, and they will surely test his resolve.
Nicholas Kristof: I’m afraid that Donald Trump’s craziness is proving infectious, making Democrats crazy with rage, and that actually impedes a progressive agenda.
“Has the state Senate gone bat-guano crazy? If the Assembly votes similarly, and the governor signs the sanctuary state bill, this state will become a mecca for illegal immigrant criminals. Lets hope Gov. Jerry Brown sees the danger in this bill and vetoes it the moment it reaches his desk.” – Kern Hunt, Lincoln
Tweet of the day
“ALERT: Assembly is currently voting to designate a state dinosaur. It's really happening guys ” – Melanie Mason @melmason.
For the record, that would be AB 1540 by Assemblyman Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica. The bill commemorates Augustynolophus morrisi, Augie, for short. It was an herbivore, the remains of which are housed in the LA County Museum. Among the legislators skipping the vote on the Augie bill was Assemblywoman Sabrina Cervantes, D-Corona. She was off negotiating for her piece of the $52 billion transportation bill. The package includes $472 million for the Riverside County Transportation Efficiency Corridor. Earmarks are magical and beautiful things.