Opinion

A call for unity as Rep. Scalise recovers. ‘Great guy’ Josh Newman fends off recall

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.

Jack Ohman says it’s the same old NRA ballgame on Capitol Hill. Read his cartoon here.

Our take

Editorials

Will shooting of a congressman be a turning point for unity? After Rep. Steve Scalise was gravely wounded at a baseball practice Wednesday, President Donald Trump and congressional leaders called for national unity. But how long will this bipartisanship last?

Belleville News-Democrat: Shooter James Hodgkinson was from Belleville, Ill., so did we create a sniper?

Columns

Dan Morain: Josh Newman wasn’t supposed to win a California Senate seat. Now, he’s fighting to keep it, but says there are worse things than losing an election. How un-politician-like is that.

Marcos Breton: Your “thoughts and prayers” mean nothing after a mass shooting. They mean less than nothing. In the face of endless, pointless violence, we are all cowards unless we raise our voices against violence and the root of violence: the proliferation of guns in America.

Op-eds

Assemblyman Kevin Kiley: Last November, 8.6 million California voters took to the ballot box and put an end to the practice – or so we thought.

Heather Cooley: Desalination proponents often tout Australia and Israel, but their experiences are warnings for California. Widely available conservation and efficiency measures, such as recycling and capturing storm water, are far less expensive.

Take a number: 53 percent

A majority of Sacramento area residents say civic and cultural amenities are very important to their personal well-being and quality of life, according to a new survey conducted for Valley Vision. And 44 percent also say they are very important to attract new business to the region.

Among amenities, parks and trails are far and away the most important at 54 percent, which is music to the ears of parks advocates. The City Council is listening to them, setting aside more than $2 million for easements to start finishing the Sacramento River Parkway through the Pocket. Museums, art galleries, music and sports venues are all in single digits, however. Foon Rhee, @foonrhee

Their take

Mercury News: President Donald Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan struck the perfect tone in the wake of the tragic shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and four others at a baseball practice Wednesday in Alexandria.

Raleigh News & Observer: Just being in the public eye, no matter which political party to which one may belong or what position one may have on issues, represents a risk from those motivated to take “action” without regard to its consequences.

San Francisco Chronicle: Sen. Kamala Harris, a career prosecutor, is putting her skills on display — and some of her Republican colleagues are not taking it well.

Orange County Register: There’s an insidious technique that some elected officials and government employees have used to subvert the public’s right to know what they’ve been up to. It’s known as a “reverse California Public Records Act” lawsuit.

Los Angeles Times: Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia pledged this week to wean their ports off dirty diesel and other fossil fuels and switch to zero-emission equipment by 2035. This is the most aggressive plan yet to cut air pollution at the ports, by far. And it’s an essential transformation both to clean Los Angeles’ notoriously unhealthy air and to cut the carbon emissions that are fueling climate change.

Miami Herald: Can’t hear the clamor from the U.S. Capitol to make Puerto Rico the 51st state? Neither can we. The desire for statehood was a big winner in the commonwealth’s referendum held last weekend. However, only 23 percent of those eligible bothered to cast a vote. So the clamor from the island wasn’t deafening, either.

Syndicates’ take

E.J. Dionne Jr.: The bill Senate Republicans are writing is being held as close as the nuclear codes. President Donald Trump and his administration provide excellent cover as their assorted outrages dominate the news and deflect attention from Capitol Hill.

Dana Milbank: Donald Trump, as candidate and president, has been a weapon of mass distraction. While America focuses on Jeff Sessions and James Comey, House Republicans are weakening gun laws, while Senate GOP is advancing Trumpcare.

Thomas L. Friedman: China and South Korea have one thing in common: The thing they fear most is not a North Korean nuclear missile blowing them up. It’s North Korea either blowing itself up – economically collapsing under the weight of sanctions – or being blown up by America.

Leonard Pitts Jr.: When law-abiding people have legitimate reason to fear even a traffic stop, the world becomes more dangerous, both for police and the communities they serve.

Mailbag

Pet licenses are too expensive already. Sacramento is about to make it worse. – Susan Bush, Sacramento

Tweet of the day

“Twitter handle has changed because I am now writing my political column for http://CALmatters.org four days a week. First one on Wednesday.” – Dan Walters‏, @DanCALmatters

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