Reporter’s Notebook: The search for unity

A delegate at the Democratic National Convention passes by a group of pro-Bernie Sanders protesters. (Photo: Brad Bailey)

Hillary Clinton accepted the Democratic nomination for president Thursday as the nation’s first female nominee of a major party, a historic moment captured in a blaze of pomp and color. It was the culmination of four days of speeches that targeted the national convention’s fundamental theme — unity. But in the California delegation — the largest of the 50 states — unity at times was a rare commodity.

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News

Brown: More carrot, less stick

An inmate gestures through the bars of his prison cell. (Photo: Sakhorn, Shutterstock)

Gov. Jerry Brown has a lot riding on the November ballot. Voters will decide on his Proposition 57, which Brown says would let nonviolent inmates become eligible for parole sooner, create “good behavior” credits for state prisoners and let judges decide whether to try a juvenile as an adult. With California’s prisons crowded and facing a court-imposed population cap, and thousands of inmates housed outside the state, Brown says his measure makes sense.

News

PolitiFact: Does CA really have world’s 6th largest economy?

“These are the progressive policies that have made California the sixth largest economy on planet Earth,” De León said. We won’t wade into the debate over whether progressive or other policies have positioned the state’s economy on such a high perch. But we will examine the provocative “sixth largest economy on planet Earth” claim by itself.

Opinion

Online charter schools under attack

Photo illustration: Africa Studio, via Shutterstock.

OPINION: Imagine enjoying your summer holiday vacation only to learn that special interest lawmakers beholden to the California Teachers Association are voting to close down your child’s school. As a parent, you’ve never received any school closure information or a single news report.

News

Campaign cash: A journey through the Cal-Access labyrinth

Photo illustration: IQoncept, via Shutterstock

When California introduced its Cal-Access campaign finance website, “There was nothing like it in the country,” said Rob Lapsley, who was under-Secretary of State in 2000, the year the campaign disclosure tool made its debut. Fast forward 15 years: What was once cutting edge is now obsolete. “The current system is broken, literally.”

News

PolitiFact: Licensed gun dealers outnumber McDonald’s 2-to-1 in CA

Photo illustration: Vaclav Mach, via Shutterstock)

The Safety For All campaign made a recent statement about the prevalence of gun dealers in California. It’s a colorful claim like Obama’s, but has a bit more hard data to back it up. “There are at least twice as many licensed firearm dealers in California as there are McDonald’s,” the campaign’s spokesman said in recent email.

News

Proposition 53: A battle over debt

Stockton businessman Dino Cortopassi, who is financing Proposition 53 on the Nov.8 ballot. (Photo: Scott Duncan, Capitol Weekly.)

He started out with $3,000 and a VW bug. Now, he’s a multimillionaire bankrolling a November ballot initiative to dramatically change the way the California borrows money for public works.

News

The Legislature: Let the sun shine in

Chamber of the state Assembly in the Capitol, Sacramento. (Photo: Felix Lipov)

Want to take a deep dive into the California Legislature? You may get your chance. Proposition 54 by Charles Munger Jr. and Sam Blakeslee on the November ballot would force the Legislature to record all its actions and post the video on the web for the public, except for certain proceedings. It would bar lawmakers from acting on any bill until its final form has been published online for at least 72 hours.

Opinion

Top priority: The push for K-12 accountability

Youngsters in a California classroom. (Photo: Monkey Business Images, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: The clock is ticking for our kids. Within a few weeks, The State Board of Education will determine many K-12 school accountability provisions in our education system for decades to come.

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