Time to Give Prosecutors a Choice on Drug Crimes

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Just because an idea comes from a San Francisco legislator doesn’t make it a bad one. Sure, the city has a well-deserved reputation as a bastion of liberal political thought and Republicans across the country love to bash liberals as “San Francisco Democrats.” And there’s no denying that some lawmakers from the city can wander […]

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Education Plan Tests Brown’s Popularity

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

A new Field Poll shows that California voters are feeling good about Gov. Jerry Brown, with 61 percent saying that he “can be trusted to do what is right.” Those warm feelings are going to be tested in upcoming months as the governor pits school district against school district in an attempt to overhaul the […]

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Prop. 13 and the Unintended Consequence

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

In the Bay Area, you have commuters griping because the Labor Day party to celebrate the opening of the new Bay Bridge is being paid for by their tolls. In Los Angeles, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa wants to charge for parking at the zoo and find new ways to get more cash out of the animals […]

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Both Sides Must Negotiate Environmental Reforms

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Sure, “CEQA Works,” but not as well as it should. The landmark California Environmental Quality Act, a sharp tool for protecting the state’s natural patrimony from reckless and unquestioned development, now is too often used as a thick, rusty doorstop to block any projects that someone, anyone, just doesn’t want to see happen. The sides […]

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California and Brown Riding a Hot Streak

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

If Jerry Brown were a gambling man, this would be a fine time to hit the dice tables in Reno. Or at least take a flier on the state lottery. The governor and California are riding a hot streak right now and even the state’s long-disgruntled residents are going with the flow. A new Public […]

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Brown’s Speech Had Something for Everyone

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Oliver Wendell Holmes. Genesis. FDR. King Charles III of Spain. Montaigne. William Butler Yeats. Gee, Jerry Brown must be giving a speech. Add to those quotes a rapid-fire summary of 250 years of California history, a locker room pep talk and shout outs to legislators, voters, unions, business leaders, teachers and students and you have […]

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County Boards Are Home for Ex-Legislators

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Few people were surprised when Hilda Solis announced earlier this month that she was leaving her post as Secretary of Labor. Hey, President Obama’s first term is done, there’s a lot of movement in the Cabinet and it’s not like the Labor Departments is D.C.’s most happening place. But there was probably plenty of head-scratching […]

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The Hard Work’s Ahead for Brown’s Budget

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

When an exuberant Gov. Jerry Brown released his proposed $96.7 billion state budget Thursday, he called it “a breakthrough” that balances state finances for the first time in years. Democratic legislators were equally enthusiastic. “Fantastic job, governor,” was the general response. “Now all we need to do is make these tiny little fixes …” Expect […]

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A Cheerier Look at California in 2013

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

The other day, Steven Greenhut was on this site with his 10 predictions for 2013, all which can be boiled down to “The Democrats won the election, so California is doomed!” I’m not saying Steven’s completely wrong (Liberal pundits will indeed blame Republicans for everything that goes wrong, just as conservative pundits will blame the […]

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Eric Swalwell Recognized the Changing State

John Wildermuth
Journalist and Political Commentator

Editor’s note: Eric Swalwell is John Wildermuth’s nominee for the Fox & Hounds Black Bart Award. This annual award goes to the Californian of the year in the world of politics – decided by Joel Fox, John Wildermuth & Joe Mathews. California politics is never going to be the same again. And because Eric Swalwell […]

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