Capitol Alert

Kim Kardashian keeps up with California politics, lobbies Jerry Brown

In this June 24, 2015, file photo, American TV personality Kim Kardashian attends the Cannes Lions 2015, International Advertising Festival in Cannes, southern France. Armed robbers forced their way into a private Paris residence where Kardashian West was staying, and stole more than $10 million worth of jewelry, police officials said Monday, Oct. 3, 2016. They said five assailants, who are still at large, stole a jewelry box containing valuables worth 6 million euros ($6.7 million) as well as a ring worth 4 million euros ($4.5 million).
In this June 24, 2015, file photo, American TV personality Kim Kardashian attends the Cannes Lions 2015, International Advertising Festival in Cannes, southern France. Armed robbers forced their way into a private Paris residence where Kardashian West was staying, and stole more than $10 million worth of jewelry, police officials said Monday, Oct. 3, 2016. They said five assailants, who are still at large, stole a jewelry box containing valuables worth 6 million euros ($6.7 million) as well as a ring worth 4 million euros ($4.5 million). AP file photo

Fresh off a visit with President Donald Trump this spring, Kim Kardashian is now shifting her campaign to improve prison conditions to California. In a tweet on Monday, Kardashian asked Gov. Jerry Brown to sign a bill expanding protections for female inmates.

“I do hope @GovBrown will sign AB2550 to grant #DignityForIncarceratedWomen,” Kardashian tweeted.

Never mind that she added the wrong Twitter handle for Brown and that Assembly Bill 2550 is not yet on Brown’s desk. Kardashian’s message resonated across the Capitol.

Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, D-San Diego, authored the measure, which would prohibit male correctional officers from conducting pat-down searches on female inmates. It also prevents them from entering areas where women may be undressing.

Weber said she was excited when her 35-year-old son first broke the news to her about Kardashian’s tweet.

“Since I have really active millennials in my house, they read tweets all the time,” Weber said. “I was relaxing and my son was excited about Kardashian getting involved in California politics.”

While Weber admits she is not savvy when it comes to social media, other lawmakers were quick to pounce on the opportunity to respond to Kardashian.

Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Paramount, poked fun at the celebrity endorsement, admitting he does not keep up with the Kardashians.



In a statement to TMZ, Rendon’s office said the speaker supports the bill and does not need extra help to get it passed: “Unlike Donald Trump, the California Legislature doesn’t need awkward photo ops with Kim Kardashian to do what’s right.”

Kardashian met with Trump in May to request a pardon for Alice Marie Johnson, a low-level drug offender who spent more than 20 years in jail.

As for Brown, he had no response to Kardashian. A spokeswoman said the governor does not weigh in on pending legislation.

This isn’t the first time Brown has ignored one of her tweets. Last month, he declined to respond to a tweet demanding the state conduct a DNA test for Kevin Cooper — a man Kardashian believes to have been wrongfully imprisoned.

Weber said she expects AB 2550 will easily pass and get signed into law after the Legislature reconvenes in August. The Senate amended the bill last week to allow male guards to conduct searches in cases where there is a risk of escape and no female officers are available. When the session resumes, the Assembly must vote to approve the changes.

LEGAL LIMBO

Former Republican Attorney General candidate Eric Early is petitioning to remove Democrat Xavier Becerra’s name from the general election ballot. The case will be heard at 9 a.m. tomorrow in the Sacramento Superior Court. In the lawsuit, Early argues Becerra, who was appointed to the position in late 2016, does not meet the minimum requirements of being attorney general since he is neither “a real or experienced attorney.” Even if the case moves forward, it won’t help Early, who finished fourth in the June primary.

BROADBAND IN BERDOO

The California Public Utilities Commission is meeting at 9:30 a.m. today to decide whether to approve a $1.5 million grant expanding broadband internet service to 339 eligible households in Lytle Creek — a small community in San Bernardino County. The grant would cover 80 percent of the expected project cost. Today, Lytle Creek only has slow dial-up and mobile data service.

PRIMARY CERTIFICATION

Secretary of State Alex Padilla will soon certify results from last month’s primary. All counties have reported, and the results will be officially confirmed tomorrow. Last month, The Bee reported on key races it was still watching. What happened in two close contests?

  • Assemblyman Devon Mathis, R-Visalia, captured a narrow victory over Republican challenger Warren Gubler in the primary, and an even narrower victory over Democrat Jose Sigala. The three were separated by just 2.3 percentage points. Because of the top two primary system, Mathis will face off against Sigala in a GOP-heavy district, effectively allowing the incumbent to keep his seat. But in a sexual harassment investigation released on Wednesday, the Assembly reprimanded Mathis for frequently engaging in “sexual ‘locker room talk,’ including making sexual comments about fellow Assemblymembers.”

  • In Inland Southern California’s 8th Congressional District, Republican Rep. Paul Cook will take on GOP challenger Tim Donnelly in California’s lone Republican v. Republican congressional race. Donnelly, a staunch conservative and former assemblyman who unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2014, placed second in the primary — just 1 percent ahead of Democrat Marge Doyle.

INFLUENCER OF THE DAY

When robots take California jobs, what happens next? Influencers have plenty to say.

“There is an overused expression that every problem presents an opportunity. Without a doubt one of the biggest economic challenges we face involves the jobs that are lost through advances in technology.

“California is positioned to step up to this challenge and make it a friend not a foe. First, with our network of universities and high-tech centers we should be the ones creating the new technologies and advancing these not only in America but throughout the world.

“Second, California should become the absolute leader in climate change adaptation techniques. Washington has given up its leadership so instead of China filling the void we can do it here.

“Fighting climate change is a win /win for us. Not only thousands of jobs from the clean energy transition but cleaner air as well. It is clearly time for an infrastructure program worthy of our state to ensure that our roads, bridges and highways as well as our water systems keep pace. New sources of water from recycling, recharging and desalination will allow us to withstand predicted droughts. And these technologies will be needed in the world.

“California should consider selling climate bonds to move this initiative forward for a future filled with pride, hope and opportunity.”

— Barbara Boxer, U.S. Senator, 1993-2017

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