California Elections »

Why aren’t you voting today?

Posted November 6, 2012 by | 2 Comments | ]

The number of registered voters in California is at a record high. Even among those who are registered, many choose not to vote.  KCRW asked why:
For Paul Corning, a 27-year-old actor who moved from L.A. to New York a couple years ago, today is just another day. Well, he’s starting a new job, and he’ll be preparing a monologue for an audition on Thursday. …

California Elections »

Comedians laugh, cry and drink on Election Day

Posted November 6, 2012 by | 5 Comments | ]
By seeingimonkey via Flickr

To many of us, this election feels it’s gone on forever. Voters (and their children) can’t wait for the attack ads and campaign rhetoric to be over. But there were some moments of levity these past few weeks (remember Big Bird, binders full of women, and horses and bayonets). And comedy always helps us weather the relentless politicking. So we asked some of our favorite comedians how …

California Elections, Education, News »

Props 30 and 38: Still undecided?

Posted November 5, 2012 by | 1 Comment | ]
By Bruno Girin, Flickr

We’ve talked at length about propositions 30 and 38, which generate funding for California’s struggling schools. Both propositions will generate billions of dollars to benefit California’s struggling schools. At the same time, they both attempt to protect the middle class from new taxes. But they don’t have much else in common.
The differences are numerous and account for why this fight between Gov. Brown and …

California Elections, Interviews, News »

Election Day: County by county

Posted November 5, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]

I know. I know. Like seeing a double rainbow, it doesn’t seem quite believable at first, but after all the speeches, debates, fundraisers, attack ads and geysers of speculation by television political pundits, Tuesday, November 6th, otherwise known as Election Day 2012, is almost here. Trust me on this, I’m a journalist and know these things.
To get some practical election day help and information, …

California Elections, Issues, Politics »

California Propositions: Prop 40 – Deciding the fate of new state Senate districts

Posted November 2, 2012 by | 3 Comments | ]

If Proposition 39 is complex, then Proposition 40 – a measure that’s been abandoned by the people who put it on the ballot – is downright confounding.
Prop. 40 is a referendum on new state Senate districts drawn up last year by a citizen’s commission. A “Yes” vote upholds the new districts. A “No” vote rejects them and places control of the redistricting process in …

California Elections, economy »

California Propositions: Prop 39 – Hiking taxes on multistate businesses

Posted November 2, 2012 by | 5 Comments | ]
Photo by by photohome_uk via Flickr

Most of us have no qualms about weighing in on school funding, the death penalty or any number of other issues, but when it comes to deciding what formula the state should use for calculating corporate taxes, well, a lot of folks are hopelessly at sea. There’s no getting around it. Proposition 39 is one of those measures that makes people furl their brows …

California Elections, Education, Interviews, Recent Shows, Warren Olney »

Props 30 and 38: A high-stakes election for public education

Posted November 2, 2012 by | 3 Comments | ]
By Bruno Girin, Flickr

Education is the subject of two propositions on next week’s ballot. Proposition 30 is supported by Governor Brown. Yesterday, he delivered a campaign speech in support of his “temporary tax for education” at Town Hall Los Angeles in the Biltmore Hotel. “It’s either money into the schools, or money out.  And we’re asking those who have been most blessed, who are most successful, to help us out …

California Elections, Food, Issues »

California Propositions: Prop 37 – Labeling genetically engineered food

Posted November 1, 2012 by | 11 Comments | ]

How hot an issue are genetically-modified foods and the debate over Prop 37? We went to a local supermarket and talked with some shoppers to find out:
“It just seems like it’s a no-brainer,” said one shopper. “We need to know what’s in our food and make decisions based on the evidence that we just don’t know enough about GMO’s to expose ourselves and our …

California Elections, Interviews, Issues, Recent Shows, Warren Olney »

Prop. 37: Did $44 million make the difference?

Posted November 1, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]

Proposition 37 would require food producers, grocers and other retailers to label genetically engineered food sold in California. If they failed or refused, they could be taken to court. TheOrganic Consumers Fund, Nature’s Path Foods and others have raised about $7 million to support Prop. 37. Opponents, including Monsanto, Dupont, DOW AgroSciences and brand-name food processors have raised $44 million against it. The measure that once led by a margin of …

California Elections, News, Politics »

Echo Park grocery shoppers weigh in on Prop. 37

Posted October 31, 2012 by | 4 Comments | ]

Proposition 37, which would require the labeling of all genetically modified foods in California, is one of the more emotionally charged measures on the Nov. 6 ballot. Proponents say consumers have a right to know what’s in their food, even if there’s no conclusive proof that genetic engineering poses health risks. Opponents include big biotech companies, soft drink manufacturers and food processors who could …

California Elections, Politics »

California Propositions: Prop 36 – Reforming Three Strikes

Posted October 31, 2012 by | 15 Comments | ]

For the past week and a half, we’ve been making our way down the list of 11 statewide measures on next month’s ballot—trying to shed some light on issues from education funding to car insurance rates. Today – Proposition 36, which would amend California’s Three Strikes Law.
California has what is often called the toughest Three Strikes law in the country. It was passed in 1994. Under …

California Elections, Recent Shows, Warren Olney »

The race for LA District Attorney

Posted October 31, 2012 by | 6 Comments | ]

Three-time LA District Attorney Steve Cooley is stepping down at a time when both crime and public resources are on the decline. In Tuesday’s final election, two veterans of Cooley’s office are running to be his replacement. They are Chief Deputy Jackie Lacey and Alan Jackson, head of the Major Crimes Unit. (They have declined to debate, so we hear from them one at a time, and …

California Elections, Politics »

California Propositions: Prop. 35 – Tougher penalties for human traffickers

Posted October 30, 2012 by | 64 Comments | ]

At first glance, Proposition 35 seems like an easy choice.
A “Yes” vote is a nod in favor longer prison sentences and higher fines – up to a million dollars – for human traffickers. Prop. 35 would also require human traffickers to register as sex offenders, and it demands that registered sex offenders disclose all of their Internet identities.
“In my 23 years as a prosecutor, …

California Elections, Recent Shows, Warren Olney »

Taking no Prisoners: Berman versus Sherman

Posted October 30, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]

One of this year’s nastiest and most expensive campaigns for Congress is taking place in the West San Fernando Valley. Veteran Democrats Howard Berman and Brad Sherman have been forced to compete for the newly drawn 30th District. They’ve spent more than $10 million, exchanged insults, and, in a now-infamous televised moment, almost come almost to blows. As Berman and Sherman struggle down to the wire, Eric Bauman, …

California Elections, Issues »

California Propositions: Prop. 34 – a bid to end the death penalty

Posted October 29, 2012 by | 3 Comments | ]

Proposition 34 aims to repeal the death penalty in California and replace it with life in prison without parole.
This isn’t the first time California has wrestled with the death penalty. Back in 1972, the state Supreme Court declared the death penalty cruel and unusual punishment. It was reinstated through a voter approved ballot measure six years later.
This time backers of Prop. 34 are pointing …

California Elections, Politics »

California Propositions: Prop. 33

Posted October 26, 2012 by | 17 Comments | ]
Muscle Cars by  dicktay2000 (Flickr)

If Proposition 33 sounds familiar, it should. The measure is almost identical to a statewide proposition that was narrowly defeated two years ago. And just as in 2010, the Yes campaign is funded almost entirely by George Joseph, the founder and chairman of Mercury Insurance.
Joseph wants to give California drivers the right to retain “loyalty discounts” when they renew their auto insurance, even if …

California Elections, News »

Measure B: Debating the use of condoms in pornography

Posted October 25, 2012 by | 4 Comments | ]

One of the down-ballot local measures that LA County residents will vote on come November 6 is Measure B. The measure would require all male porn performers to wear condoms on set to protect their partners and themselves from the spread of Sexually Transmitted Diseases.
In order to pay for County health workers to traverse the Valley spot checking porn sets and enforcing the new …

California Elections, News, Politics »

California Propositions: Prop. 32

Posted October 25, 2012 by | 2 Comments | ]

In the lead up to the election we’re delving into the statewide measures on the November ballot. Today, KCRW looks at the ins and outs of Proposition 32.
If you’ve turned on the TV over the past month or so, chances are you’ve heard ads for and against Prop 32.  Ads that say things like:  Corporations and unions give politicians millions in contributions.  They get …

California Elections, News, Recent Shows »

Prop. 36 and Prop. 34: Debating the death penalty and ‘Three Strikes’

Posted October 25, 2012 by | 2 Comments | ]

Part I: In 1994, Californians cracked down on so-called “career criminals” by passing a law called Three Strikes and You’re Out. If a defendant has prior convictions for two “serious” or “violent” crimes, it provides that any third felony conviction will mean a mandatory sentence of life in prison. Proposition 36 on next month’s ballot would change that. Michael Romano, director of the Three Strikes Project at Stanford …

California Elections, News »

Prop 36 and how California’s ‘Three Strikes’ law came to be

Posted October 24, 2012 by | 2 Comments | ]

Back in 1994, California voters overwhelmingly voted to pass a ballot measure that promised to “keep career criminals, who rape women, molest innocent children and commit murder, behind bars where they belong.” It became the state’s “Three Strikes” law, under which a person convicted of a felony who has two or more prior convictions for serious or violent felonies is sentenced to 25 years …

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