Analysis

CA120: Nonpartisans in a pickle

A portion of California's June 7 ballot. (Photo: Tim Foster/Capitol Weekly)

When nonpartisan voters were asked how, exactly, they were going to get a Democratic ballot, we saw evidence of widespread confusion. Nearly 60% of those surveyed either incorrectly thought that the Democratic candidates would be on their ballot — as happens in other open primary contests — or they weren’t sure how to vote in the Democratic presidential race.

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A note to our readers

Capitol Weekly and the CA120 series have been exploring the use of original polling to review the presidential race and the U.S. Senate contest. We are providing data-driven stories on how California voters are engaging with the election.

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Survey shows deep GOP stresses

PPIC: Californians have deeply mixed views about the major political parties, with fewer than one in four viewing the GOP favorably and about half giving Democrats a thumbs up, according to the latest survey by the Public Policy Institute of California. About 49 percent of all adults reported a favorable impression of the Democratic party, while only 23 percent have a favorable view of the Republicans, down about 7 points since December.

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Sanders, Clinton pony up for final stretch

Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton at a presidential candidates debate. (Photo: Joseph Sohm, Shutterstock.)

Democratic presidential contenders Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders plan on spending about $2 million combined on TV ads in California as their primary election campaigns hit the final stretch. Clinton began her effort Thursday, with about $940,000 committed so far in those three communities. Sanders began the day before.

Analysis

Telling the truth about Medi-Cal

California doctor, a photo illustration. (Niyazz, via Shutterstock)

Medi-Cal is a deeply misunderstood program. It spends a lot of money, but it’s most certainly not out of control, and it is not a welfare program. The truth is that Medi-Cal is one of the state’s most cost-effective programs, serving more than one-third of Californians and half of all California children.

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Defying national trend, CA biker crashes decline

A motorcyclist and his bike, ready to roll. (Photo: oneinchpunch, via Shutterstock)

FairWarning: The apparent 10 percent increase in motorcycle fatalities, based on an analysis by the Governors Highway Safety Association, coincided with a projected rise of about 8 percent in traffic deaths overall in 2015. Preliminary figures from the National Safety Council put the traffic deaths total at 38,300, also the highest level since 2008. In California, in contrast to the national trend, motorcycle crash fatalities actually declined by 7 percent.

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Hey, voters: Watch the Birdee

For the next six months, California voters will be bombarded with election images. Among the sinister attack-ad voice-overs and the political arguments engulfing social media, voters may catch a glimpse of ”Birdee,” a plump, twinkly eyed red bird, one of several animated characters in California’s political wars.

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Youngest contender runs in 2nd Congressonal District

Erin Schrode, candidate for the 2nd Congressional District. (Photo: Teens Turning Greeg. org

Twenty-five-year-old Erin Schrode, a Democrat, is running for the House in the 2nd Congressional District, which includes coastal counties north of the Golden Gate Bridge to the Oregon line. She is the youngest candidate in any of California’s 53 House races and may be the youngest in the nation. She actually turned 25 during the campaign – the minimum required age to serve in the House.

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A first: Stem cell agency okays ‘great idea’ grants

An illustration of a telomere at the end of a DNA sequence of a chromosome. (Illustration: VIT Studio, via Shutterstock)

The $3 billion California stem cell agency this week welcomed the first members of its “Great Ideas” club and gave them a total of nearly $4 million to pursue the scientific gleams in their eyes. Nineteen researchers received awards at a meeting yesterday of the governing board of the agency. They were the first such grants approved by the nearly 12-year-old enterprise.

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Voter registration spike linked to Facebook

Voters and potential voters at a political rally. (Photo: Joseph Sohm, via Shutterstock)

A hefty chunk of the new voter registrations for California’s June 7 presidential primary election occurred during a 48-hour period this week, stemming from a Facebook effort urging people to sign up, according to the state’s elections officer.

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