McCarthy and Feinstein strike a water deal; not everyone salutes

Good morning. On behalf of The Sacramento Bee’s editorial board, welcome to The Take, your opinion-politics newsletter. Please sign up for it here.

Our take


Feinstein, McCarthy strike water deal, but war goes on: Kevin McCarthy, Dianne Feinstein and others extolled the compromise. Some of it is praiseworthy. But no one should kid themselves. This bill will result in damage to the environment. And it won’t end California’s water wars.

Wells Fargo scam victims should get their day in court: As if the rip-off of some 2 million customers weren’t enough for Wells Fargo & Co., it turns out that the bank is trying to deprive its victims of their days in court.


Dan Walters writes that the California Hall of Fame is a good idea, but the choices of some honorees are a little odd.


Bill Whalen: California legislative leaders should take a cue from Gov. Jerry Brown and relax a little about Donald Trump.

Rob Lapsley: We can’t let resistance to Donald Trump cause collateral damage to California’s economy.

Take a number: 9.3 percent

That’s the combined rate of the officially unemployed, discouraged workers who have stopped looking for jobs and part-time workers who can’t find full-time work. Foon Rhee’s Numbers Crunch looks at the increase in part-time work, a big challenge for President-elect Donald Trump.

Forum preview

Antonio Villaraigosa: Perhaps one of the most powerful ways we can defend our people is to make sure we are uniting with other cities and states to advance and preserve policies that help meet the challenge of Donald Trump’s new administration.

Jock O’Connell: How Donald Trump’s approach to foreign trade could hurt Sacramento’s economy.

Their take

Mercury News: Selling out to Central Valley water interests, Sen. Dianne Feinstein is pushing legislation that would gut environmental protections and have devastating long-term effects on the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta’s ecosystem.

San Francisco Chronicle: Stop Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s water-bill rider.

Los Angeles Times: With Sen. Harry Reid’s retirement, will the Yucca Mountain plan be revived?

San Diego Union-Tribune: On transparency, President Barack Obama has an awful legacy.

The Charlotte Observer: Obamacare is dying, but it’s also winning.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram: An outbreak of mumps in a Texas county? Blame the anti-vaxxers.

Sarah Anderson, The Nation: Portland has just opened up a new front in the struggle against inequality by voting to slap a surtax on corporations that pay their chief executive officers more than 100 times what they pay their typical workers.

Syndicates take

Michael Gerson: Donald Trump’s emerging bipolar presidency.

Charles Krauthammer: Donald Trump commands the political stage.

Eugene Robinson: What does it take to convict in police shootings?

Dana Milbank: Kellyanne Conway is playing the “woman card” all wrong.

Nicholas Kristof: A dad’s loss and identity politics.

Gail Collins: Donald Trump sets up Al Gore for heartbreak.

Charles M. Blow: Donald Trump is madman of the year.


“Understand the Electoral College, appreciate the trust placed in your principles and abide by your pledge.” Bob Bartlett, Granite Bay

Kevin McCarthy’s take on water legislation

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, ever a dealmaker, was in a good cheer when he called Thursday after the House had passed the first big bill dealing with California water in 25 years, 360-61.

“This is not the end-all,” the Republican from Bakersfield said. “But it is a good first start. You build trust when you show you can do this.”

It is a compromise, he noted, something we in newspaper opinion shops have been urging for years. McCarthy says the bill has no impact on the Endangered Species Act, and believes environmentalists are spreading false information.

The Obama administration offers a different take, warning in a memo to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, McCarthy’s partner in the water bill: “We continue to believe efforts to legislate specific changes in operations of the (Central Valley Project) and (State Water Project) will result in the potential for considerable litigation around these new statutory directives.”

And so the fight will go on and on.