Picking through election results: Moderate Democrats made gains. So did industries that support them. Andy Pugno is out $303,000, Donald Trump left a mess in California, and Darrell Steinberg can enjoy his impressive victory, but only for a few minutes. He has work to do.
Democrats can be forgiven for thinking they might win two-thirds majorities in both houses of the Legislature. That would give them the votes to approve tax hikes. Theoretically.
Democrats backed by almost $24 million from business interests – oil, real estate, tobacco, insurance and the others – won eight primaries, nine if you count the Senate race in San Francisco.
They include moderate Assembly candidates Cecilia Aguiar-Curry in Yolo and Napa counties, Tim Grayson in Contra Costa County, Madison Nguyen in San Jose, Anna Caballero in Salinas, Matt Dababneh and Raul Bocanegra in L.A., Cheryl Brown in San Bernardino, and Senate candidate Bill Dodd in Napa and Yolo counties.
A ninth, Scott Wiener, seeking a state Senate seat in San Francisco, would be a lib anywhere else.
While a few mods could lose in November, the ranks of business-backed Dems will swell when the next Legislature is sworn in. They skew liberal on social issues but veer closer to Republicans on tax questions.
“California a not a blue state; it is a navy blue state,” said Democratic consultant David Townsend, who advises moderate Democrats. But as shown by Hillary Clinton’s 10-point win over Bernie Sanders, Townsend said, California Democrats are center-left, not way left. “They want to be problem solvers.”
Take a number: 8
Proposition 8 architect Andy Pugno, a Fair Oaks attorney, placed third in an 11-candidate field to succeed Assemblywoman Beth Gaines in the Roseville-Rocklin area. The social conservative spent $303,000 of his own money on his Assembly candidacy.
The likely November winner is former deputy attorney general Kevin Kiley, a Republican who received former Gov. Pete Wilson’s endorsement. Republican financier Charles Munger Jr. and public employee pension critic David Crane, a Democrat and adviser to former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, helped fund Kiley.
Editorial: Sacramento chooses Darrell Steinberg’s vision; we wholeheartedly agree.
Editorial: We welcome but don’t cheer the End of Life Option Act, signed into law by Jerry Brown and authored by Lois Wolk and Bill Monning.
Dan Morain: Donald Trump leaves California Republican Party in quite a mess.
Marcos Breton: Five takeaways for what lies ahead for Darrell Steinberg.
Justin Doctor: Implementing the End of Life Option Act won’t be easy for California doctors.
Thomas Bannon: The California Apartment Association doesn’t support rent control but wants to be part of the solution to the housing shortage.
San Francisco Chronicle: Hillary Clinton will be the inspiration for a new generation of women in politics.
San Diego Union Tribune: Bernie Sanders must walk away so Donald Trump won’t win in November.
Ben Shapiro, The National Review: Barack Obama, like it or not, leads a coalition of tribes. Donald Trump, like it or not, leads a competing coalition of tribes. The Founders weep.
Debra J. Saunders, San Francisco Chronicle: San Jose needs a civics lesson, and Juan Hernandez needs to heal.
Jon Ralston, Ralston Reports: Nevada Republicans chose the GOP over the USA by supporting Donald Trump.
E.J. Dionne Jr.: How Hillary Clinton got here.
Dana Milbank: Everywhere the GOP turns, there’s the smell of Donald Trump.
Thomas L. Friedman: Dump the Grand Old Party for a new grand party.
Gail Collins: What Hillary Clinton must imagine.
Leonard Pitts Jr.: House Speaker Paul Ryan is wrong to back Donald Trump.
Tweet of the day
Gabrielle Giffords @GabbyGiffords
Speaking is hard for me. But come January, I want to say these two words: “Madam President.” #ImWithHer