Time to Settle the Prison Overcrowding Dispute

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Gov. Jerry Brown is still batting .000 against the federal judges dealing with the state’s prison overcrowding suit and it doesn’t look like his slump is going to end anytime soon. Despite the governor’s angry words and continuing court battles, it’s past time to sit down with all parties and try and work out the […]

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Good Legislators Make the Tough Decisions

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

No one can be a good legislator unless he is willing to give up the job. If hanging on to that seat in Sacramento or Washington, D.C., — or on any city council or county board in the state, for that matter — is the focus of a political career, that officeholder is a hack, […]

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Prison Compromise, Working or Not, Is Good Politics

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

The absolute best political compromise is one where even if everything goes wrong, there’s someone else out there to blame. Which brings us to the prison deal Gov. Jerry Brown cut with state Senate leader Darrell Steinberg this week. For those who haven’t been following, judges all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court have […]

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Secession Makes Sense In Rural California

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Siskiyou County supervisors voted Tuesday to move toward seceding from California and looking to form a new state with neighboring counties in California and Oregon. Crazy as it sounds, it makes a kind of sense in rural California. Not that it’s time to start thinking about hiring a new Betsy Ross to sew a 51st […]

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Steinberg’s Prison Plan Misses A Key Point

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

What part of “forthwith” doesn’t Darrell Steinberg understand? If there’s one thing the federal judges holding sway over California’s prison overcrowding lawsuit have been consistently clear on, it’s that they want the problem fixed and they want it fixed now. Every time Gov. Jerry Brown has gone to the judges and suggested that California has […]

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Decline-To-State Voters Still Play Politics

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

In California these days, decline-to-state doesn’t mean decline to play. The fastest-growing party in the state in recent years is made up of those voters who don’t want to be Democrats or Republicans. But that doesn’t mean they don’t want to be players in the political system. We’re not talking the elected side of politics. […]

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Bay Bridge Shows California’s Political Disarray

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

If California can’t even build a major public safety project on time and on budget when virtually everyone – Democrats, Republicans and independents alike – agrees it absolutely has to be done, what does it say about getting anything accomplished in the state these days? That’s the question Steve Heminger, executive director of the Bay […]

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GOP State Senate Win Is Good for California

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

When Hanford Republican Andy Vidak was elected last month in a heavily Democratic Central Valley state Senate district, it was good news for Republicans but even better news for Californians in general. For California, and especially for the state’s Democratic legislators, it was a much-needed reminder that partisanship isn’t always destiny when it comes to […]

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Mass Transit Must Meet People’s Self-Interest

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

If you want to know why so much legislation, both in California and in Washington, has an “eat your vegetables” feel to it, you only have to look at the Public Policy Institute of California poll released this week. The poll found that 85 percent of California adults are convinced that global warming has either […]

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Filner Shows There Are No Secret Sins Today

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

A number of years back, there was a San Francisco mayor of whom it was said, “Three drinks and he thinks he’s invisible.” He wasn’t. Today, with the Internet and a camera in everyone’s pocket and a culture where people are willing to share their lives with the world in 140 characters or less, it’s […]

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