Katehi departs, Garamendi drops by, Trump ‘jokes’ about guns

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

UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi resigned ahead of this week’s UC regents meeting, while Gov. Jerry Brown and tribes that own large casinos struck important new compacts. Plus Olympic hijinks, Zika funding, or lack thereof, and Donald Trump’s latest “joke.” Oy.

Take that

Rep. John Garamendi, D-Walnut Grove, offered a rather pointed assessment of House Republicans, including leaders, when he dropped by The Sacramento Bee’s editorial board Tuesday.

“They created a monster that’s eating them,” he said of Paul Ryan and other leaders, referring to Freedom Caucus conservatives who could challenge Ryan’s speakership. Freedom Caucus members introduce bills that “are not conservative; they’re crazy.”

And he believes the GOP is facing a “wave election.” Hence, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said she won’t vote for Donald Trump. Expect others to waffle and bolt. Even Rep. Darrell Issa, the San Diego County Republican, seems nervous. Ryan and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy “clearly are going to have to scramble” to maintain their majority, Garamendi said.

The size of the wave will be become clearer when September polling is completed. “The Republican brand is in trouble; thank you, Donald Trump,” Garamendi said.

Take a number: $1.205 million

On Tuesday, the Senate Governmental Organization Committee approved 25-year compacts with several casino-owning tribes. Three of the tribes, the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, and Yoche Dehe Wintun Nation, contributed a combined $1.205 million to California state campaigns in the first half of 2016, plus $15,000 to the congressional campaign of the committee chairman, Sen. Isadore Hall, D-Compton. The committee approved the deals unanimously.

Our take

Editorial: Linda P.B. Katehi’s decision to resign as UC Davis chancellor is deeply saddening and an institutional relief.

Editorial: Gov. Jerry Brown and Indian tribes deserve praise for their new compacts. Casinos have become part of California, and casino workers deserve protections that strong unions can provide.

David Tom Cooke and Shannon Baker-Branstetter’s Soapbox: California’s zero-emission vehicle program needs a tuneup.

Robert C. Fellmeth’s Soapbox: Facebook’s legal settlement risks teens’ privacy.

Bret Lane: Aliso Canyon facility is needed to keep power on.

Their take

San Francisco Chronicle: With the cap-and-trade auction system in limbo, an inflexible ballot measure suggested by Gov. Jerry Brown could be an especially dangerous solution to a complex problem. State lawmakers need to create certainty by passing SB 32 now. We agree.

Mercury News: California’s top foster care prescribing doctors are fueling the medication of our most vulnerable children at an unacceptable rate.

Tacoma News Tribune: Baron Pierre de Coubertin couldn’t have foreseen what Olympic excess would look like in 2016, nearly 80 years after his death.

Kansas City Star: If you’ve ever wondered whether Congress really deserves its approval rating, which just barely rises into the double digits, witness lawmakers’ reaction to the Zika virus.

Ronald Brownstein, The Atlantic: If there is any road to recovery for Donald Trump, it inescapably runs through white-collar suburbs. But the coruscating letter from the GOP national-security leaders is just another of the many boulders he’s facing on that path.

Syndicates’ take

Kathleen Parker: John Oliver gave the best defense of newspapers, ever.

Ruben Navarrette: Why voters want “none of the above.”

David Brooks: There might be a Great Affluence Fallacy going on – we want privacy in individual instances, but often this makes life generally worse.

The Trump follies

#Manypeoplearesaying Donald Trump crossed the line – again – with another “joke.”

“Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish the Second Amendment,” Trump said in North Carolina. “By the way, if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know.”

Hilarious, isn’t it?

The Clinton campaign called Trump’s words “dangerous.” Michael Hayden, former chief of the NSA and CIA, said if anyone not running for president had uttered such words, he or she would “be in the back of a police wagon now with the Secret Service questioning him.”

And Sen. Elizabeth Warren said Trump “makes death threats because he’s a pathetic coward who can’t handle the fact that he’s losing to a girl.”

“I mean, give me a break,” Trump said, telling his biggest sycophant-apologist-booster Sean Hannity that he was urging gun owners to vote, not resort to violence. – Erika D. Smith @Erika_D_Smith