Capitol Alert AM Newsletter

Schwarzenegger’s New Way summit + Tracking job killing bills + Trump’s ‘attack on women’

Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, speaking in Los Angeles on March 21, tweeted Thursday about his health following his March 29 heart procedure.
Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, speaking in Los Angeles on March 21, tweeted Thursday about his health following his March 29 heart procedure. The Associated Press

Today is your last day to send me book recommendations. I’m looking for anything that will help me get caught up with California’s 200-year history. My email is open:


Last week he was at the fitness-focused Arnold Expo. Today former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is headed back to Sacramento for the second annual New Way Summit.

According to its website, New Way is a movement that hopes to “change the divisive dialogue that plagues politics and reignite the California Dream.”

The daylong summit will be packed with round table discussions on healthcare reform, the future workforce and clean energy, as well as panels of current and former politicians, most of whom are known as centrist Republicans.

The lineup includes the Terminator himself, former Assemblywoman Catharine Baker, R-Dublin, current San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference President Samuel Rodriguez and New Way board members Cassandra Pye and Kristin Olsen, who is also the Stanislaus County supervisor.

Bill Kristol, director of Defending Democracy Together and Republicans for the Rule of Law, will deliver the keynote address.

Sure to be a central theme: Is there a Republican future in California?

GOP political consultant Mike Madrid says “maybe.”

The future is in the hands of a few Republicans who will publicly distance themselves from President Donald Trump, a move that is “central to the party’s fortunes,” Madrid said, continuing that lawmakers should focus on conservative values and issues like affordable housing and economic opportunities for Latinos, rather than identity politics.

“It’s not that people don’t like Republican ideas,” Madrid continues. “It’s that they don’t like Republicans.”

Assemblyman and New Way co-founder Chad Mayes, Yucca Valley, said New Way is about reforming the “caustic and abrasive” political rhetoric.

“It’s important for democracy to have competing ideas and competing visions,” Mayes said. “It makes democracy stronger when people are able to sit down and debate in a civil manner. We hope our efforts will assist those who don’t find themselves at home with either Republicans or Democrats, who say ‘Hey I want our government to work for us.”

The summit is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. today at the Crest Theatre. You can live stream the event from New Way’s Facebook page, and coordinate when to tune in by checking out the agenda here.


...would be a great political horror film title.

The California Chamber of Commerce identified its first “job killer” bill of 2019 in Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher’s AB 51. The San Diego Democrat is leading a second attempt to ban employers from forcing workers to sign agreements that keep their complaints out of court.

Her effort is aimed at shedding light on sexual harassment claims. Cal Chamber argues the legislation would expand litigation and increase costs for both employers and employees.

“By barring workers from standing up for their rights on the job, the Chamber of Commerce is playing the role of the real job killer,” Gonzalez Fletcher said. “AB 51 protects workers when corporations discriminate, tolerate sexual harassment, or engage in wage theft. It’s a shame the Chamber continues to view workers as a the problem and not the solution.”

Last year, Cal Chamber identified 29 “job killer” bills. All of the bills failed. Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed Gonzalez Fletcher’s near-identical legislation last year.

“We know many of these job killing proposals will return next session but legislators need to understand that California employers have reached their limit with respect to new laws and regulations that increase costs through threat of litigation and additional burdens that stop them from making future investments in our state’s economy,” the chamber said last year.

Interested in following the job killer list this year? There’s a Twitter account for that, or you can monitor the chamber’s website.


First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom and female lawmakers joined the attorney general at a news conference Monday announcing a lawsuit over new federal abortion provider rules.

The lawsuit challenges the Trump administration’s plan to deny federal funds to organizations like Planned Parenthood that refer patients for abortions. Siebel Newsom and others at the news conference called the policy, which is slated to take effect in May, a “gag rule.”

“This gag rule is an attack on women everywhere but especially the most marginalized and vulnerable among us,” said Siebel Newsom, a documentary filmmaker and outspoken advocate of women’s rights. “What the president is really attacking here is gender equality and female autonomy.”

Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s office filed the lawsuit in San Francisco on Monday.

Via Sophia Bollag

For your radar: The State Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing today on California’s data privacy laws. With less than a year before the California Consumer Privacy Act goes into effect, lawmakers are working to determine what further steps are necessary to cover Californians’ privacy rights.

Since passing last year, politicians and tech companies have fought over provisions within the privacy act. Members of the Legislature say the law doesn’t go far enough, while internet lobbyists are fighting to weaken the legislation.

Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, is convening the meeting today at 1:30 p.m. in room 112 at the Capitol. Check out the live stream here, and catch up on the Sac Bee’s coverage on the limits of the CCPA here and here.


Must-read: California public employees’ pension perks can be taken away, court rules by Wes Venteicher

And another one: California court ruling could deter college students from reporting sexual assault by Monica Vaughan

Hannah Wiley joined The Bee as a legislative reporter in 2019. She produces the morning newsletter for Capitol Alert and previously reported on immigration, education and criminal justice. She’s a Chicago-area native and a graduate of Saint Louis University and Northwestern.