Now, President Trump claims to want to heal the nation he has helped divide: The most divisive president in modern history stood before the nation on Tuesday night and insisted he wants nothing but unity. Donald Trump talked in his first State of the Union address about “one team, one people, and one American family.” That’s a welcome change of tone coming from him, but they are hollow words unless he follows up with real deeds. Read more.
Jack Ohman sneaks a peak at the House floor at the State of the Union. See more.
Karin Klein: If charities realized how much they’re irritating people with nonstop solicitations and by sharing or selling donor lists to other nonprofits, they might even think twice about it. Nah, not really. As long as the never-ending stream of junk mail brings in more money than it costs, we can count on our mailboxes being stuffed with pleading letters and “free” return address stickers. Read more.
Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: Sisters are doin’ it for themselves. That, you may remember, was the title of a hit 1985 pop song. But 33 years later, pop has become prophecy. What other conclusion can one draw from the tsunami of woman power now bearing down on us? As chronicled by the New York Times, CNN, NBC News, Time and others, 2018 has brought a record number of women – over 500 – running for major state and federal offices. Read more.
Andrew Malcolm, McClatchy D.C.: Democrats and their sympathetic media are eagerly awaiting the oncoming annihilation of many of Donald Trump’s congressional ground troops in the midterm elections just 40 weeks away. But Democrats appear to be making a familiar mistake again of underestimating their GOP opponent. Read more.
Dan Walters, CALmatters: Los Angeles and San Francisco may be economic and cultural rivals, but politics in the state’s two most important cities are similarly harsh. Both are dense mélanges of economic, cultural and ethnic “communities” that joust constantly and to those who aspire to high office, they are minefields laid atop pits of quicksand. Read more.
Robbie Hunter: Since the first of the year, some contractor and building industry associations have peddled a story around the state that California has fallen into the ravages of a construction labor shortage. But, have we really? Read more.
Stephanie Taylor: Jack London was a war correspondent a century ago in what is now North Korea. Then as now, it was a geopolitical flashpoint. Read more.
Charlotte Observer: U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., no longer thinks it’s urgent to protect special counsel Robert Mueller from Donald Trump. We think it’s more urgent than ever. And it’s not just the special counsel who needs protection. Read more.
Los Angeles Times: After years of mismanagement, missteps and bad luck that delayed and inflated the cost of California’s bullet train, officials adopted a plan two years ago that they promised would get high-speed trains zipping between San Jose and the Central Valley by 2025. But just when it seems like the bullet train might finally be on track, there comes more bad news: The project is over budget, potentially leaving it with too little money in hand to complete the work. Read more.
Orange County Register: This likely isn’t the way El Rancho High School in Pico Rivera had hoped it would receive national recognition. But after video leaked of Pico Rivera Councilman Gregory Salcido, who is also a teacher at the school, engaged in a rant against those who serve in our military, the school has been put on the map. Read more.
San Diego Union-Tribune: One month into California’s recreational marijuana experiment, state leaders must show much more of a sense of urgency about the need to give what’s expected to be a $7 billion annual industry access to banking services. Dispensary managers are lugging tens of thousands of dollars in cash to state tax offices – an invitation to an epidemic of armed robberies. Read more.
San Jose Mercury News: Gov. Jerry Brown’s big, bold $2.5 billion executive order committing the state to a goal of 5 million zero-emission vehicles on the road by 2030 expands a program that was already far and away the most ambitious in the United States. The potential benefits are great and deserve the support of Californians, including Brown’s potential successors. Read more.
Seattle Times: Conversion therapy for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth is child abuse, plain and simple. The Washington Legislature should have banned this horrible practice long ago. If action in the Senate is any indication, 2018 will be the year for a sensible approach to changing state law to stop conversation therapy. Read more.
Ed Rogers, Washington Post: Rep. Devin Nunes has turned the Russia investigations, which were already based on a flawed premise, into a media exercise that plays mostly into the hands of Democrats and their allies in the media. Read more.
Dana Milbank, Washington Post: President Trump spoke “from a teleprompter” in his State of the Union address. That’s why we heard “unifying” and “bipartisan” notes. If you want “from the heart,” check his Twitter account. Read more.
David Brooks, New York Times: When you wade into the evidence, you find that the case for restricting immigration is pathetically weak. The only people who have less actual data on their side are the people who deny climate change. Read more.
David Leonhardt, New York Times: Normal stories – such as the layoffs at Carrier – are President Trump’s biggest vulnerability, and the circus is actually his friend. Democrats would be wise to remind themselves of this fact every single day. Read more.
Noah Feldman, Bloomberg View: As special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation focuses more on President Trump’s handling of the Russia investigation than on the 2016 campaign itself, the mismatch between what the written Constitution says and what the unwritten rules demand might be the basis on which Trump’s presidency stands or falls. Read more.
“Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris and Rep. Doris Matsui must work to protect and support Mueller, and Congress must take action immediately to ensure President Trump can’t interfere in Mueller’s investigation.” – Pablo Garza, Sacramento
Miami Herald: David Beckham sealed the deal. A little more than four years ago, the soccer superstar arrived with big dreams of bringing a Major League Soccer franchise to Miami and building the team and its fans a waterfront stadium downtown — on county-owned land. Of course, he got a Miami-style greeting: a warm embrace — and a smack upside the head. But we admire his persistence. Read more.