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The title of Muslim Day at the Capitol this year says a lot: Action Trumps Fear.
More than 700 people are expected to turn out for the sixth annual event hosted by the California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Organizers expect higher engagement within the Muslim community than past years largely due to President Donald Trump.
“The election of Trump and the campaign in general kind of reignited a spirit of justice within the community that was very much dormant,” said Yannina Casillas, legislative and government affairs coordinator for the organization. “A lot of people are really interested in getting more involved.”
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A week after the inauguration, Trump attempted to make good on campaign promises with the first of two executive orders blocking citizens of several predominantly Muslim countries from entering the U.S. Both orders have been halted by federal judges, despite strong push back from the administration.
The full day program at the Capitol today includes a press conference at 11 a.m. to highlight several bills in the Legislature that the council supports.
Casillas said the council is a sponsor of Senate Bill 31, also known as the California Religious Freedom Act. The bill bars state and local governments from establishing their own or aiding in the creation of a religious registry that includes someone’s national origin or ethnicity. The council also supports Senate Bill 54, which bars state or local law enforcement from using their resources to help federal immigration enforcement. Another measure, AB 158, attempts to establish more accurate reporting of hate crimes.
WORTH REPEATING: “Jerry Brown headed to Beijing – not D.C. – to discuss environmental protection. Sad!”
– Tom Steyer, billionaire environmentalist, channeling President Donald Trump’s style on Twitter
PUBLIC VS. CHARTER: In the latest battle between charter and public schools, lawmakers will hold a press conference today to discuss three bills sponsored by the California Teachers Association. Sen. Tony Mendoza, D-Artesia, is expected to discuss SB 808, which gives school districts the right to authorize charter schools in their jurisdictions. Los Angeles Democratic Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer’s AB 1478 requires charter schools to comply with the same conflict of interest rules as school districts. Assemblyman Rob Bonta, D-Alameda, relates to school accountability and performance standards. The event begins at 10 a.m. in room 1190.
TWIN BILLS: A pair of moderate Democrats are attempting to draw attention to twin bills on tax exemptions on sales of manufacturing and research and development equipment. Sen. Jim Cooper, D-Elk Grove, and Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, D-Stockton, will speak about AB 600 and SB 600 at 10 a.m. on the west steps of the Capitol. AB 600 is scheduled for a hearing in the Assembly Revenue and Tax Committee at 2:30 p.m. in room 126.