Politics, government and public life for Southern California

California GOP House members shifting to the center on immigration reform

Rep. Darrell Issa Republican National Convention

Lauren Osen/KPCC

Republican Congressman Darrell Issa of Vista says Congress has to consider citizenship for those who "are capable of meeting all the responsibilities."

President Obama called Republican Senators this week to talk about immigration reform. The House is content to wait until the Senate acts, but the President – and immigration activists – may want to call on California GOP members who are sounding more open to immigration reform than any time in the recent past.
It’s a different conversation about immigration these days among most Republican members of Congress from California.
GOP Congressmen John Campbell of Irvine calls the current immigration system "broken." Jeff Denham of Turlock says we "really have to address the issue" of the 11 million undocumented people in the U.S. today. And Darrell Issa of Vista says we "have to consider" citizenship for those who "are capable of meeting all the responsibilities."
Citizenship has been the line-in-the-sand Democrats have drawn on immigration reform. In the past, some moderates in the GOP embraced legalization for undocumented residents. But many on the right labeled any kind of legal status as “amnesty.” However, more Republicans are now bowing to political realities after Latinos overwhelmingly voted for Democrats in November.


Wendy Greuel versus the little newspaper from Cerritos

Wendy Greuel Profile

Grant Slater/KPCC

Mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel has become the target of a community newspaper in Cerritos.

One of the interesting aspects of this year’s race for Los Angeles mayor is the interplay between City Controller Wendy Greuel and the Los Cerritos Community News.

In its latest story on Greuel, the online paper — which has a weekly print edition — lambasts the L.A. City Controller for waiting to release her official e-mails until after the March 5 primary election. The paper has accused Greuel of using government e-mail accounts for political purposes.

“Wendy Greuel is not above the law, and cannot hide from members of the media,” publisher Brian Hews said in a statement published on the LCCN website.  Hews, whose family once owned the Los Angeles Wave newspapers, takes pride in commenting on his own stories.


Maven's Morning Coffee: LA city elections in the homestretch, Laura Chick questions timing of municipal races, LAPD talks about Christopher Dorner

Election Day Voting Polling

Mae Ryan/KPCC

It's almost Election Day, which means more negative mailers, newspaper endorsements, and lots of media attention.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, public meetings and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Wednesday, Feb. 20, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:


LAPD Capt. Phil Tingirides talked to reporters about what it was like to be under police protection during Christopher Dorner's rampage. "Phil and (his wife) Emada tried to be strong in front of their kids, so they went into the garage to cry. They were determined not to be prisoners in their home, and they started to prepare for this to last months, a year, two years," reports the Daily News.

In a Los Angeles Times op-ed, former Controller Laura Chick questions why Los Angeles municipal elections are held on off years. "It's no wonder that only a small fraction of registered voters will cast ballots this March. They're suffering from election fatigue," she writes.


LA's Council District 1 race pits veteran pol Gil Cedillo against policy wonk Jose Gardea (Photos)

Jose Gardea First District City Council candidate

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Jose Gardea canvasses for votes in the Pico-Union area of the Los Angeles City Council's First District.

Jose Gardea

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Jose Gardea, chief of staff to City Councilman Ed Reyes, is running to succeed his boss. He's on a freshly-paved street in the Pico-Union area.

Gil Cedillo with yard sign

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Former state Sen. Gil Cedillo posts a campaign sign in the yard of a First District resident in the Pico-Union area Jan. 31, 2013.

Gil Cedillo meets a voter

Sharon McNary/KPCC

First District City Council candidate Gil Cedillo poses for a campaign photo with Gueadalupe Vasquez Gonzalez at a home in the Pico-Union area.

Jesse Rosas, First District City Council candidate

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Jesse Rosas, a Lincoln Heights property manager, is running for the First District City Council seat.

William Morrison, First District write-in candidate

William Morrison is a write-in candidate in the Los Angeles First District City Council race.

The March 5th Los Angeles city election pits two very different candidates against each other in the race for Council District 1, which stretches diagonally from Northeast L.A. to the Pico-Union neighborhood. One is a detail-oriented city staffer who knows the district from 12 years of hands-on contact, the other a longtime Sacramento lawmaker who promises to wield his political know-how to get things done.

Given the choice to showcase their interaction with voters in any neighborhood in the sprawling First District, both candidates chose the Pico-Union area. Not just the same neighborhood, but the same streets.

On separate days, former Assembly member and State Senator Gil Cedillo and First Council District Chief of Staff Jose Gardea walked by the same barking dogs, rattled the same fence gates and fielded complaints of cars zooming through the same side streets.

This neighborhood – among the oldest and poorest in the city – is dense with immigrants from Mexico and Central America, so registered voters are few and they mostly prefer Spanish.


Gov. Jerry Brown backs Gil Cedillo for LA City Council

California Dream Act

Damian Dovarganes/AP

Gov. Jerry Brown, right, endorsed Gil Cedillo, left, Tuesday for the Los Angeles City Council's First District. He faces two opponents in the March 5 primary.

A longtime state lawmaker picked up support Tuesday from Gov. Jerry Brown in his bid for the Los Angeles City Council’s First District seat.

Gil Cedillo has served in both the State Assembly and Senate. He is running against Jose Gardea, chief of staff to incumbent Councilman Ed Reyes, and businessman Jesse Rosas. 

“Gil Cedillo is a proven local leader who knows how to bring people together to get things done,” Brown said in a statement from the campaign.

“We need Gil Cedillo’s leadership, strength and passion on the Los Angeles City Council in order to create jobs, increase neighborhood safety, and expand after-school programs that keep our kids safe.”