Patt Morrison

<em>Patt Morrison</em> is known for its innovative discussions of local politics and culture, as well as its presentation of the effects of national and world news on Southern California. Hosted by

Patt Morrison for

Patt Morrison for July 11, 2011

From This Episode


“Stay the heck on the East Side”: bracing for the closure of the 405 and the coming of CAR-MAGEDDON


Abolishing California’s death penalty moves one step closer to the 2012 ballot

Polling data from the last 50 years suggests that California voters would reject a measure abolishing the state death penalty if it ever came to the ballot, and yet Senate Bill 490 is proposing just that. On Thursday, the bill cleared its first legislative hearing, and if passed in the Senate, voters may be able to decide the issue in the November 2012 elections. The U.S. 9th Court of Appeals estimated that an end to capital punishment could save California $5 billion over a 20 year period by substituting life sentences for state execution. The figure seems attractive to many in light of the $4 billion that have been spent on administering the death penalty here since 1978, as well as the difficulties of the current fiscal climate. Supporters say also that official revenge through capital punishment neither makes the state safer nor provides much comfort to victims’ families. Opponents of the measure vociferously dispute these points, and argue that criminals will be less inclined to avoid shooting cops and others if they know they cannot be executed for their actions. Governor Jerry Brown, who has long opposed the death penalty, has not yet announced whether he will sign such a bill if it reaches his desk. State politicians too are weighing the risks of supporting such a controversial measure, since elections are approaching, and they are expected to be highly competitive. Why or why not should we ban capital punishment here? And can life sentencing provide the same degree of punishment that execution can?


Who (or what) will give on deficit negotiations: can Obama, Democrats & Republicans strike a deal?

Go big, go medium, go small - but don’t go home. Those seem to be the options facing President Obama, Democrats and Republicans in Congress as all three sides grapple with the idea of a grand bargain that will cut the federal budget deficit, by as much as $4 trillion, through a series of spending cuts, entitlement cuts and “revenue increases” (higher taxes). President Obama took to the microphone this morning to argue for the “go big” option, believing that now is as good as any time to make the series of hard choices that will be necessary to trim a $14 trillion deficit and structurally change the finances of a federal government that seem to be perpetually in flux. Speaker of the House John Boehner seemed to chose “go medium” when, late on Saturday, he announced that he was withdrawing from his direct negotiations with President Obama because Republicans would never agree to any new tax increases. “Go small” could become the only practical option left - trimming spending and still increasing the federal debt ceiling while putting off the politically difficult sacrifices that would have to be made by both parties and all Americans, including cuts to entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare and raising taxes. And still, there is the “go home” elements in both parties that are so entrenched in their positions—no changes to Medicare, no new taxes—that any kind of deal might prove impossible. Is the time ripe, as President Obama believes, for a sweeping deal that fundamentally alters the way the federal government does business? Or is it time to give up, take a deal, no matter the size, and kick the can a little further down the road?


Recent Episodes from Patt Morrison

Patt Morrison for September 7, 2012

Broadcasting live from the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, we check up on how President Obama's speech checks out. And Hollywood's been at the DNC – actors Richard Schiff and Beau Bridges riff on that enduring connection. Also, Comedy Congress’ big wrapup in Charlotte – Diane Sawyer talks about her age and Mike Dukakis talks about what ifs.

Patt Morrison for September 6, 2012

It’s old home day at the Democratic Convention... that is, if your home is California. The Golden State’s Attorney General Kamala Harris, southern California Congresswoman Judy Chu, and actor Richard Schiff, he is of "The West Wing" and a new political show called "Chasing the Hill." Plus, a post game analysis of former President Bill Clinton’s address to the Democratic troops.

Patt Morrison for September 5, 2012

We’ll hear the First Lady’s speech but what does her body language say? We’ll be reading it. And, what party muckety mucks are keeping away from President Obama and staying home from the Democrats’ big dance? We’ll do the Charlotte two step.

Patt Morrison for September 4, 2012

How do the conventions look to the rest of the world? And how well do foreigners understand the electoral college? We’re polyglot with the foreign press in Charlotte. And, what did Nancy Pelosi tell Comedy Congress about Clint Eastwood and his chair?

Browse the Patt Morrison Archives

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