Will California schools pass their tough test on pensions? Some California school districts are already cutting programs, reducing staff and dipping into reserves to make sure they can pay all their teacher pensions. The two candidates for state schools superintendent on the Nov. 6 ballot – Marshall Tuck and Tony Thurmond – must tell voters how they would tackle the issue. Read more.
Jack Ohman goes to farm country. See the weather report here.
Erika D. Smith: It’s clear that the backers of Gov. Jerry Brown’s gas tax have a problem. It’s just not the problem they think it is. Read more.
Bill Whalen: Former Assembly Speaker Willie Brown deserves to be in the California Hall of Fame. Politicians and African-Americans who aren’t athletes are woefully underrepresented. And Brown embodies the California Dream. Read more.
Pete Nielsen, California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals: While legislation is important to address the opioid crisis in California, we need leaders to be the voices to push for more treatment and a comprehensive approach. Read more.
Jennifer Savage, Surfrider Foundation: Senate Bill 1029 would establish a 300-mile trail from San Francisco Bay to Humboldt Bay, opening up new worlds to residents and visitors alike, showcase rivers and redwoods and bringing economic growth to rural towns on the North Coast. Read more.
Karin Klein: The SAT essay is dying. The University of California should put it out of its misery. Read more.
Barry Broome: Why support Measure U? Because it’s a sure-fire way to boost Sacramento’s economy. Read more.
Takes on water
Armando Quintero and Carol Baker, California Water Commission: On Tuesday, the California Water Commission completed a groundbreaking process to make the state’s largest investment in water storage in a generation, which will better prepare the state for climate change and drought. Read more.
San Jose Mercury News editorial board: Bay Area residents are finally getting the funding they sought for additional water storage when they helped pass Proposition 1 in 2014. State officials on Tuesday approved spending $2.5 billion of Prop. 1 money to help fund construction of four new dams and four underground storage projects. Read more.
Takes on Trump and trade
Marc A. Thiessen, Washington Post: At the Group of Seven summit in Quebec, President Trump was roundly criticized for publicly berating allies over their trade practices and provoking a needless trade war. Well, once again, it appears he is being proved right. Wednesday’s breakthrough with the European Union shows that is using tariffs as a tool to advance a radical free-trade agenda. Read more.
Los Angeles Times editorial board: U.S. automakers breathed a bit easier Wednesday after President Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker announced an agreement to shelve threatened U.S. tariffs on imported autos and retaliatory European tariffs on U.S. goods while the two sides negotiate lower trade barriers. But it wouldn’t validate the methods this president has been using to try to change our trading partners’ practices. Read more.
Orange County Register editorial board: On Tuesday, the Trump administration announced it would provide American farmers up to $12 billion in emergency aid to alleviate the detrimental impacts of the global trade war the president has gotten the country into. Fortunately, many Republicans were principled enough to speak out against the White House’s absurd plan to use bailouts to paper over the harm of the president’s tariffs. Read more.
San Francisco Chronicle: A November ballot measure to allow more rent control of California's housing market could cost local and state tax coffers hundreds of millions of dollars. That's the sobering bill for Proposition 10, billed as a tenant-pleasing antidote to the state's critical housing ills. Read more.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat: State Auditor Elaine Howle just released her annual whistleblower report, and there isn’t a thumbs up to be found – except for the unnamed state employees who reported egregious behavior in their own agencies. Some of the on-the-job hijinks would be funny if it weren’t for the wasted public money, the breach of the public trust and the astonishing examples of feeble oversight. Read more.
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: If President Trump’s secretly taped conversation with attorney Michael Cohen reminds you of a crime boss and his consigliere, you’re not alone. Trump’s current lawyer and mouthpiece, Rudy Giuliani, evidently agrees. Read more.
Bret Stephens, New York Times: Nov. 4, 2020. In the end, a bitterly fought election came down to the old political aphorism, popularized during Bill Clinton’s successful 1992 run against George H.W. Bush: “It’s the economy, stupid.” This time, however, it was the Republican incumbent, not his Democratic challenger, who benefited from that truism. Read more.
“Let’s show Republicans how to do it right by encouraging our legislators to fund an open source ballot voting system.” – Judy Reynolds, Davis
Tweets of the day
"I support Kevin McCarthy. Everybody knows that, and I'm not going to be here," Paul Ryan answered when asked if he'd support Rep. Jim Jordan to replace him as Speaker of the House https://t.co/F8vfkNR6HZ pic.twitter.com/ncSrU5xyL6— POLITICO (@politico) July 26, 2018
The phrase "confidence of a mediocre white man" is specifically crafted for someone like Jim Jordan, who stands accused of complicity in the sexual abuse of countless Ohio State wrestlers but is nonetheless running for House Speaker despite the fact the GOP is expected to lose.— Charlotte Clymer️ (@cmclymer) July 26, 2018