Opinion

Dianne Feinstein blesses Gavin Newsom on guns, but not weed

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.

Republican Meg Whitman stumped for Hillary Clinton in Colorado, Marco Rubio won his U.S Senate primary easily in Florida after saying he would never run for re-election, and the Legislature busied itself passing scores of bills including paid family leave, with support from Assemblyman Roger Hernandez, who earlier tried to kill it. Consistency is way overrated.

Take that

Say what you will about Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, but the guy spent close to two hours at The Bee defending in fine detail his two far-reaching and complicated initiatives on the Nov. 8 ballot.

Proposition 63 would compel people who buy ammunition to prove they are legally entitled to own guns, and Proposition 64 would legalize marijuana.

Newsom, a candidate for governor in 2018, also displayed proper respect for his elders, particularly Gov. Jerry Brown for his command of gun policy, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who is co-chair of the gun initiative and signed the ballot argument for it.

“She is passionate. She called me to ask, ‘What can I do to help?’ You will see her more publicly engaged soon,” Newsom told our editorial board.

Feinstein also is the most prominent opponent of the marijuana legalization initiative, Proposition 64, and signed the argument against it.

Newsom explained: “I don’t want to say ‘generational’ because I don’t want to say that, so I’m not going to say that. I never said that. I may have said it, but I didn’t say it. …

“She has a grandchild and she probably thinks this will normalize it. … I don’t know that it’s not already normalized.” Polling definitely shows a age divide on the issue, perhaps reflected by the two former San Francisco mayors; Newsom is 48 and Feinstein is 83.

Take a number: $18.9 million

Drug maker Mylan bought the life-saving EpiPen product from Merck in 2009, when a pack of two sold for $124. After taking heat for raising the price to more than $600, Mylan announced it would offer a generic version for $300. Between 2007 and 2015, Mylan CEO Heather Bresch’s total compensation went from $2.4 million to $18.9 million and change, NBC recently reported.

Our take

Editorial: Wouldn’t it be nice if we knew whether handing out concealed weapons permits to “good” guys – 8,000 since 2010, when Sheriff Scott Jones took office – makes any of us safer, the gun owners included? Maybe now we can start getting real answers, based on science to be overseen by UC Davis’ Garen Wintemute.

Editorial: Give Sacramento credit for capping arena tab.

Shamus Roller’s Soapbox: Legislature and Gov. Jerry Brown fail Californians on affordable housing crisis.

Susan Gubernat’s Soapboax: Sen. Steve Glazer offers a false promise on graduation rates at California State University campuses.

Griffin Dix’s Soapbox: Legislation by Assemblyman Rob Bonta would weaken handgun safety in California.

Their take

L.A. Times: Public officials should not have tip jars. They should not accept gifts or expensive tokens of appreciation from vendors or employees – or anyone else they wouldn’t normally invite to an intimate birthday party.

Santa Rosa Press Democrat: Yes on Proposition 56. For every 10 percent increase in the cost of a pack of cigarettes, teen smoking drops by up to 7 percent.

Kansas City Star: A few days ago Kansas House Republicans called on voters to oust four of the five state Supreme Court justices standing for retention later this year. The GOP group said they were part of “an activist and political judiciary.” Voters should soundly reject this blatant attempt to politicize the court.

Raleigh News & Observer: Most of the $4.1 million Wells Fargo is going to pay in relief and penalties to the federal government for illegal fees and others practices connected to the handling of private student loans is going to the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, with just over $400,000 going in relief to borrowers. But that’s fine. The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau is proving its value.

Syndicates’ take

Kathleen Parker: Donald Trump and “the blacks.”

Dana Milbank: Will Vladimir Putin spring an October surprise?

David Brooks: Making modern toughness.

Tweet of the day

Tom Perez ‏@LaborSec, as the California Legislature approved overtime for farmworkers: “Farmworkers that put food on our table deserve same protections that other industries have had for years. CA bill would ensure fairness.” Nice sentiment and we agree. But shouldn’t the U.S. labor secretary know the difference between that and who?

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