Opinion

We’re living in a hashtag world: #GrabYourWallet and #ShePersists

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

Editorials

President Donald Trump’s business conflicts are a scandal waiting to happen. Trump’s tweet against Nordstrom dropping his daughter’s clothing line and Melania Trump’s lawsuit claiming an unfounded story cost her millions on her brand during the presidency are part of a pattern of Trump and his family blatantly mixing business and government.

Elizabeth Warren? #ShePersists, but Jeff Sessions is the new attorney general: With Elizabeth Warren and other Democrats unable to stop his confirmation, Jeff Sessions will take his position at the Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building. We soon will see how he enforces civil rights, voting rights and equal rights. We don’t hold out much hope.

Columns

Shawn Hubler: California’s loyal opposition to the Trump administration isn’t all lawyers and lawmakers. It includes business people such as Bay Area marketer Shannon Coulter, whose #GrabYourWallet movement helped persuade Nordstrom to dump Ivanka Trump merchandise.

Andrew Malcolm: Former President Barack Obama said that, following tradition, he intended to steer clear from participating in Washington’s daily political scrum. But it didn’t take long for him speak out on one of President Donald Trump’s executive orders.

Op-eds

Joe Mathews: The Central Valley still thinks of itself as agricultural. That’s understandable, given the region’s rural history and the outsized influence of agriculture. But that influence obscures the 21st-century reality – most people in the Central Valley live in cities, the true economic engines of the region.

Michael Kiparsky and Roger Bales: Without information on where, when and how much water is available and being used, California can’t improve how it manages water and natural resources.

Taking on a Texan and asset forfeiture

At a meeting with sheriffs at the White House this week, our president asked how he could improve law enforcement. As retold by the Texas Tribune, a Texas sheriff, Harold Eavenson, spoke up:

“We’ve got a state senator in Texas that’s talking about introducing legislation to require conviction before we can receive that forfeiture money, and I told him that the cartel would build a monument to him in Mexico if he could get that legislation passed.”

Bully-in-Chief Trump responded: “Who’s the state senator? Want to give his name? We’ll destroy his career.” Quite a statesman, our president.

Eavenson didn’t identify the legislator. But the Fort Worth Star-Telegram found one who is carrying forfeiture legislation, and she’s a Republican.

Now that Trump is a conservative, maybe someone should tell him conservatives hate asset forfeiture laws. It has to do with that whole private property/Fifth Amendment thing. If he has any questions, he could call the American Legislative Exchange Council.

Their take

The San Diego Union-Tribune: The discovery in drinking water of lead, copper and bacterial contamination due to aging plumbing at La Mirada Elementary School in the San Ysidro School District should be a wake-up call for all local – and state – districts with older schools.

The Miami Herald: Since President Trump could resurrect Frederick Douglass, Sen. Elizabeth Warren must have figured she could breathe life into the words of Coretta Scott King. Turns out, she couldn’t.

San Antonio Express-News: Transparency is a crucial disinfectant for the scourge of special interests and hidden conflicts that can hijack legislation. The public deserves it. Ethics reform without dark money disclosure just isn’t good enough.

The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch: After a 12-year experiment, it appears that cutting the income-tax rate has not led to a significant increase in job growth. Given this, Gov. John Kasich’s recent proposal to cut the income-tax rate once again, while boosting the sales-tax rate, is not compelling.

The Denver Post: To grow and prosper in any enterprise, investments must be made for the future. Pretending that the state can fix its transportation challenges with existing money is just cynical.

The Kansas City Star: Kansas cannot simply cut its way to prosperity or a healthier state budget. Slashing state spending would fuel a state recession, not cure it. Raising taxes is never popular. But voters have sent a clear message to Topeka: Fix. This. Problem.

Syndicates’ take

Dana Milbank: Nothing has distinguished President Donald Trump, his aides and his loyal supporters more than their shared struggle with spelling. The president “attaks” and “dishoners” the English language.

Thomas L. Friedman: Every day, President Donald Trump’s behavior becomes more worrying. His lack of respect for institutions and truth pours out so fast, you start to forget how crazy this behavior is for any adult, let alone a president.

E.J. Dionne: Steve Bannon disrupted American politics and helped elect Donald Trump as president. Will he disrupt the Roman Catholic Church by joining forces with right-wing Catholics who oppose Pope Francis?

Mailbag

“The police escort was overkill [at Rep. Tom McClintock’s town hall]. McClintock was not in any danger, except that of having his reactionary bubble burst.” – Mary Lou Giles, Cameron Park

Tweet of the day

“This is quite the pothole.” – The Sacramento Bee’s Dale Kasler, @dakasler.

Kasler and Ryan Sabalow are trying to get to the bottom of how a 250-foot-long gash appeared in the spillway at Oroville Dam. As rain falls and Lake Oroville rises, people downstream could be forgiven if they have their canoes at the ready. But as Department of Water Resources officials figure out the cause and remedy, they’re assuring the public that there’s no danger of a dam failure.

To see the power of water being released from Oroville, check out this video, and go to Dale’s Twitter feed.

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