Dianne Feinstein

CA-Sen: Unknown Candidates Line Up Against Sen Dianne Feinstein

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California’s Senor U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein

Why these folks are bothering, is beyond me.

No proven Republican candidates have stepped up yet to challenge Sen. Dianne Feinstein, but six little-known longshots plus Laguna Niguel’s Orly Taitz are trying to gain traction.

Senate hopefuls Elizabeth Emken, Dan Hughes, Al Ramirez and Greg Conlon were pumping the flesh at last month’s convention of the California Republican Party, according to the Sacramento Bee’s coverage of the event.

There’s also Ron Paul-styled Republican Rick Williams and San Diego County businessman John Boruff.

Noe of these candidates has a hope or a prayer to beat DiFi.

In fact, the California Republican Party was unsuccessful in recruiting any known POL to run – doesn’t that tell you something?

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Dianne Feinstein

CA-Sen: Elizabeth Emken Announces Run for United States Senate

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Elizabeth Emken and family

Elizabeth Emken announced her candidacy for the Republican nomination for California United States Senate yesterday, Is she is succesfull in winning a top two spot, she undoubtedly will face off against long-time incumbent Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein.

I believe Emken is the only announced Republican candidate.

She has previously run for office in California’s 11th Congressional District in 2010. She finished fourth in the Republican primary election with 16.7% of the vote.

Emken will face a tough race against the popular and very well heeled incumbent Senator who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Here is a video of her past race:

Her Senate campaign website is here.

Unless lightening strikes, I would say Emken’s chances of beating Feinstein are very slim.

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Bud Selig

Flap’s California Morning Collection: June 21, 2011

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A morning collection of links and comments about my home, California.

The buzz in the Capitol today is that long time Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein is not polling well in the latest California Field Poll. In fact, her numbers are the lowest for her since 1992. If any pundit really thinks DiFi is vulnerable, I will refer them to Carly Fiorina who was the last Republican challenger to a California Democratic U.S. Senator who was deemed vulnerable = recently re-elected Barbara Boxer.

DiFi is not going anywhere except back to the Senate, barring any health problems. But, I wonder who the GOP will run in 2012 as the sacrificial lamb?

The poll graphic:

In Los Angeles, everyone is talking about the L.A. Dodgers and the owner Frank McCourt. The Commissioner of Major League Baseball who took over control of the team some time ago from McCourt disapproved a new Fox Sports television contract which may precipitate a sale of the team, lawsuits, and/or a bankruptcy filing. Likely, there will be all of the above, but most folks in L.A. want McCourt and his wife to be gone and the Dodgers to concentrate on baseball.

Oh yeah and McCourt owns the Los Angeles Marathon too. I might just have to run in Pasadena next Spring.

OK – on to the links:

Steinberg raises legal questions over pay issue

Senate Leader Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, made it clear that there are legal implications — lawsuit, anyone? — with the decision on legislative pay that state Controller John Chiang is expected to make Tuesday.

Steinberg suggested that any decision by the Controller would be legally questionable.

The question that got Steinberg reverting back to the lawyer that he is: Will you be able to hold out and negotiate all summer if your members are not being paid.

The unspoken suggestion: that legislators would cave on demands of $2 billion to $6 billion more in cuts to schools, universities and public safety to ensure they get their salary and daily expenses.

“It is a bad precedent for anybody in the executive branch to question the quality of a budget passed by the Legislature,” he told reporters after a quick Senate session Monday. “Because to do so is to shift the balance of power … in a way that is dangerous.

“Think about if there was a governor, a treasurer or controller from the other party and they were unhappy with the quality of the budget the Legislature passed, they would have the ability — if Proposition 25 is interpreted in a way some suggest — to say it’s not good enough, we withhold your pay until you make all of the decisions and and all of the cuts that we believe are appropriate.”

The follow-up question: Could withholding legislators’ pay “tip the balance” to legislators accepting the governor’s cuts?

“If it is an attempt to tip the balance, then it is a conflict of interest like California has never seen,” Steinberg said.

Salary matters are best decided by the Citizens Compensation Commission, Steinberg said, and legislators should not be forced to determine their vote based on whether or not they would be paid.

Why McCourt must go, from one baseball blogger

Many kudos on baseball websites today for blogger Larry Behrendt’s detailing of the case against Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, from the interlocking companies that mean the Dodgers now pay rent for their own stadium and parking lots, to the ticket revenue that gets drained elsewhere, to the huge debt and lavish personal spending. Behrendt posted before commissioner Bud Selig stepped in today to nix the deal with Fox. But that’s exactly what Behrendt felt Selig must do…..

Over the next two weeks, Bud Selig will face the defining moment of his career as Commissioner of Major League Baseball….

There is no doubt: Commissioner Selig should reject the Dodgers-Fox contract, seize control of the Dodgers, and sell the team to a responsible owner who will (with the grateful help of millions of my fellow left coasters) restore the team to its former greatness. Selig must act to prevent Frank McCourt from continuing to plunder the team. Selig must act before the team is saddled with even greater debt, while the team’s reputation can still be salvaged and the team is still marketable to a worthy owner….

How much have the McCourts managed to extract from the Dodgers? Well, if we ignore the debt the Dodgers took on so that the McCourts could buy the Dodgers but include the McCourt salaries, the McCourts have withdrawn from the Dodgers anywhere from $109 million (Frank McCourt’s estimate) to $141 million (Jamie McCourt’s estimate). The truth is, the real amount the McCourts plundered from the Dodgers may be more than $141 million – at the moment, all we have to go on is what each McCourt has been willing to admit to.
I(In case you were wondering, during their ownership of the Dodgers the McCourts have paid not one penny in income tax.)

Is Lynn Woolsey retiring? Is Gavin Newsom interested in that seat?

We’re getting the distinct feeling that something is up. Just got an “advisory” that Rep. Lynn Woolsey will hold a press conference at her home Monday in Petaluma “joined by Rep. Barbara Lee and friends and family.”

Hmmm. Remember, back in December Woolsey’s peeps told us she was “thinking of” retiring and they’d let us know by June. Tick…tock…tick…

All that Woolsey spokesperson Bart Acocella will say is: “I can tell you that she will make an announcement on the 27th about her future plans.”

Even with the state’s new redistricting plan likely to create a very-different looking 6th District, there’s already a line forming to snag the super-safe Democratic seat-for-life, starting with termed out Assemblyman Jared Huffman and activist and author Norman Solomon, Marin County Supervisor Susan Adams, state Sen. Noreen Evans, D-Santa Rosa, and Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane.

Here’s another name to toss in the mix: What about Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom?

Yes, we know the duties of Lt. Gov. are…uh…pressing. Especially when he has to walk the Governor’s dog. But eyebrows raised when Newsom just moved to…wait for it…Marin County to live with his in-laws after they had their second child.

Enjoy your morning!

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Dianne Feinstein

CA-Sen: Sen Dianne Feinstein in Re-Election Trouble? Uh No

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California Democratic U.S. Senator Diane Feinstein

The must be smoking crack over at Hot Air to even suggest that DiFi is in any trouble.
A new poll from California shows Dianne Feinstein falling below 50% in re-elect support, a rating than in any other state might mean something.  McClatchy sends up the red flag from the latest Harris Poll, which gives the four-term Senator only a +4 on support for a fifth term, hitting below 50%: (…)

Despite this poll analysis, Senator Feinstein is very safe, especially with the expected turnout for Obama’s re-election to be high. I mean, if Carly Fiorina gets blown out by 10 points against Sen. Barbara Boxer who was much less popular and there was a lower Dem turnout of voters…..

And, should Feinstein, who will be 78 in June, have health problems, the California Dems have a deep bench with Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa ready to duke it out as her replacement.

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