Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Molly Munger to pull TV ad criticizing Gov. Brown's Prop 30 ballot measure

Proposition 38 backer Molly Munger is pulling a TV ad that attacks Gov. Brown's rival measure.

The controversial TV ad attacking Proposition 30, Governor Jerry Brown's measure to restore funding for public education, is reportedly being pulled from the airwaves.

The ad was financed by civil rights attorney Molly Munger, who is pushing her own alternate measure on the November ballot, Prop 38. The ad said the campaign for Gov. Brown’s tax initiative misleads the public about how the tax revenue would be spent.

Munger told a Sacramento TV station that the negative ad will be pulled by Tuesday.

The California PTA, Prop 38’s main supporter, disagreed with the negative tone of Munger’s ad.

“We asked both campaigns to step back and de-escalate and move forward, and that’s what the Prop 38 campaign is doing”  state PTA board member Patty Scripter said Monday.

Prop 38 strategist Nathan Ballard added: "After we ran the comparative ad for a week, we made our point, and now we are moving on to an ad that spells out the benefits of Prop 38."


Round Two: Congressmen Howard Berman, Brad Sherman on KPCC (Video)

Physical Debate

YouTube/Howard Berman

Congressman Brad Sherman swings his arm around Congressman Howard Berman during a debate Thursday night, October 11 in the San Fernando Valley.

Four days after an angry physical confrontation at Pierce College, Congressmen Howard Berman and Brad Sherman face off in a debate on KPCC Monday (Scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on AirTalk).

Last Thursday, Sherman, 57, suggested Berman, 71, had initiated the clash, which was videotaped, when he moved to his side of the stage and waved a finger in Sherman’s face. One witness said it was Sherman who appeared “out of control” when he swung his arm around Berman with enough force to make him wobble.

(See the video below.)

“It was Brad who was the one who lunged at Howard,” said Jewish Journal Reporter Jonah Lowenfeld, who is closely following the congressional race. “Howard may have been a little closer to Brad than Brad wanted. But Brad was certainly the one who upped it.”

“This was not a wise or carefully considered action,” Sherman later told KPCC.


Maven's Morning Coffee: City librarian profiled, endorsements for Measure J, space shuttle lands at California Science Center

Simon Shek / Flickr

Both the Los Angeles Times and Daily News endorsed Measure J, which would extend a half-penny sales tax for transportation projects.

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 Monday, Oct. 15, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:


The Space Shuttle Endeavour lands at the California Science Center, per KPCC.

In Rick Orlov's Tipoff column, politics get physical, neighborhood councils want a GM for the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment, and Councilman Bill Rosendahl decides what to do with his campaign cash.

The Los Angeles Times looks at the new city librarian, John Szabo. "My father would drop me at the library while he played in a bowling league. I loved this space where I could explore every subject under the sun. But I was also fascinated by what went on behind the circulation desk," he tells the newspaper.


That's My Issue: Health care

Healthcare Stock

Mae Ryan/KPCC

This post is part of KPCC & WNYC's "That's My Issue" series, and represents the views of its author, not of either station. 

I think the issue for the longest time has always been health care. It was really behind Clinton when he tried to get the healthcare bill passed and I was just so thrilled to see that Obama was able to get ObamaCare going. I really agree with him that healthcare is a right, not a privilege.

I’m a teacher, so I have pretty good healthcare. But I have friends who have no healthcare and they worry that if they break their leg or if — God-forbid — they get sick with cancer or whatever, they are going to go bankrupt. They’re not going to be able to take care of themselves. It’s just incomprehensible.

That's My Issue: Health Care by KPCC

I used live in Europe, too, and I had really good coverage. I don’t care if I have to pay a little more in taxes if it means it’s going to be for the greater good. I’m obviously a democrat.


Latino voters less likely to turn out for November election

California Voters Participate In The State's Pivotal Primary

David McNew/Getty Images

Voters go to the polls for Super Tuesday primaries in the predominantly Latino neighborhood of Boyle Heights on February 5, 2008 in Los Angeles, California. An opinion survey indicates that Latino voters prefer the Democratic presidential ticket over the Republican candidates by a 3-to-1 margin this year, but it also indicates that many of poll respondents may sit out this November's election.

Latino voters say they like President Obama better than Mitt Romney by a three-to-one margin. That number has remained stable throughout the election cycle. It demonstrates a larger preference than four years ago when Latino voters picked Barack Obama over John McCain by more than two to one. 

But a new survey raises the question: will Latinos turn out to vote?

One in four registered Latino voters in California told the Pew Hispanic Center they may sit out this election, despite efforts by Democrats and Republicans to snag more Latino support. Both parties are investing in Spanish-language media and sending Latino surrogates onto the campaign trail.

Mark Lopez, associate director of the Pew Hispanic Center, said Latinos "are not quite paying as much attention to the election or are not as certain they're going to vote as the general public."

Among all registered voters, nine of 10 say they’re “absolutely certain” they’ll vote this November. 

But saying that doesn’t make it so. In the presidential election four years ago, somebody stayed home: about eight of 10 California voters cast ballots. 

Lopez says surveys rely on self-reporting. "It could be that folks are not necessarily telling us the truth," he said.  "They’re telling us what is socially desirable."

California has the largest Latino voting population in the country.  One in four Latino voters in the United States lives in California.