Capitol Alert

CA, Trump clash over Census; Gas tax opponents organize; Lawmakers react to Dellums death

Trump out to ‘sabotage’ U.S. Census, Alex Padilla tells Democrats

California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, speaking to delegates at the California Democratic Party on Feb. 24, 2018, said President Donald Trump is trying to undermine the census. Video courtesy of the California Democratic Party.
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California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, speaking to delegates at the California Democratic Party on Feb. 24, 2018, said President Donald Trump is trying to undermine the census. Video courtesy of the California Democratic Party.


California Secretary of State Alex Padilla is holding a news conference with civil rights leaders at 10 a.m. today, urging voters to oppose the Trump administration’s decision to ask about U.S. citizenship in the 2020 Census. California sued the administration in March over the constitutionality of its proposal.

At the conference, Padilla will unveil an online portal to help Californians submit their opinions on the issue — for or against — before the period for public comment expires on Aug. 7.

California has a lot to lose if the 2020 census undercounts the state’s population.


Former Oakland mayor Ron Dellums, who also served nearly three decades in the U.S. Congress, died at 82 on Sunday after a battle with prostate cancer.

Memorial details have yet to be announced. Several politicians offered their reactions.

U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, who replaced Dellums in Congress in 1998.

“The contributions that Congressman Dellums made to our East Bay community, the nation and the world are too innumerable to count.”

Former President Bill Clinton: “Ron Dellums was intense and intelligent, fearless and philosophical. He spoke truth to power and appealed to America’s conscience in championing those who were left out and left behind, whether in the East Bay, across the nation, or around the world. We will miss him.”

Sen. Kamala Harris: “Saddened to learn of the passing of Ron Dellums, who faithfully served Oakland and his community throughout his life. Sending my condolences to his loved ones.”

Congressman Keith Ellison: “Thank you Ron Dellums for your inspiring example, your courage, your humor, and your relentless faith in our ability to make a better world.”

Rev. Al Sharpton: “Sorry to hear of the passing of former Congressman/Mayor Ron Dellums. A true progressive and courageous leader. We spoke often, brilliant man.”

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf: “Congressman Ron Dellums governed from a place of morality and compassion. His progressive values set the bedrock for Oakland values.”


Supporters of Proposition 6 — the initiative calling for a repeal of California’s gas tax increase — are meeting in Bakersfield and Fresno today to coordinate organizing efforts. The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association and Reform California are sponsoring the 8 a.m. event at Hodel’s Country Dining in Bakersfield, which will be followed by a similar event at 6:30 p.m. in Fresno.

Angela Elfman, regional organizational coordinator for Bakersfield, said the focus will be to “educate the voters, energize, organize and strategize our campaign plans.

“There’s so much emotion and determination to do something about this,” Elfman said. “The people are speaking with this initiative. I don’t think you can defeat the people’s will once they know what’s really going on.”


A group of six Nobel Peace Laureates is sending a letter to Gov. Jerry Brown, urging him to transition California away from oil and gas production.

“We call on you to become the first major fossil fuel producer to begin a managed and just transition off oil and gas production,” the group wrote. The letter comes as Brown prepares to host the Global Climate Action Summit Sept. 12-14 in San Francisco.


On Monday, The Bee reported on a spike in wait times at the Department of Motor Vehicles. The story resonated with frustrated DMV customers. Here’s a small taste of what people had to say:


Jason Christie: “The DMV is out of control & should be re-created. We don’t need that huge bureaucracy any longer because it can be handled by computers in 80% of the operation.”

Darrah Ramsbotham: “They should send in a set of fresh eyes to improve logistics. This is clearly incompetent management. Nothing more or less.”


Bruce Krochman: “The very first solution the Democrats go to is giving the DMV more money. What a SHOCK!”

Cheryl Lee: “It is not the fault of the process or the employees; it is the shear number of people in California that need ID and drivers licenses!”

Olaf P Brescia: “They need an audit. And then the problems need to be corrected aggressively including firings and new hirings.”

Phil Beagle: “I made an Appointment for a Real ID and was in and out in less than an hour. Very little waiting at all. There was a line out the door that was not moving at all. Those people that just show up are idiots. Everyone that has an appointment goes before the people that just show up.”

Michael Marshall: “A high percentage of this is the process. First thing you do when you get there is get onto a computer. Why can’t people do that part at home?”


David Corn (@DavidCornDC) “Rohrabacher, “Putin’s favorite congressman,” tells me the Maria Butina case is “BS” and if Trump knew of and approved of the Trump Tower meaning, that means “zero.” That is, he’s fine with Trump colluding & conspiring with Putin’s attack on a US election.”


California schools aren’t exactly leading the nation. What should we do about it? Inluencers have plenty to say.

“The most important thing we can do to help children perform better in school is to meaningfully engage their parents in the child’s education. A parent is a child’s first teacher. When parents makes clear that school matters, it will matter to the child. If every parent could spend just one hour a month at school, that would demonstrate to children the importance of learning.”

— Gray Davis, Governor of California, 1999-2003

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MUST-READ: Drivers are fed up with the DMV. So are California lawmakers.