Presidential debates: It's a wrap

Oct 20, 2016

Donald Trump started the third and final presidential debate with a poise and ferocity unmatched by his previous two performances -- but then he refused to acknowledge whether he would accept the results of the election and obligate himself to the tradition of a peaceful transition of power.


CATHLEEN DECKER with L.A. Times: "Donald Trump needed a compelling victory in Wednesday’s debate to alter the course of a campaign that has increasingly moved toward Hillary Clinton both nationally and in key states."


"He did not get it."


"The final debate was  notable for delving into policy matters more than in two prior meetings, and for a more measured performance by Trump, in what was undeniably his best debate."


READ MORE related to Presidential Debate: Debate transcript: The 'nasty,' 'horrifying' and most interesting exchanges of the presidential debate, annotated -- STAFF with L.A. Times; What it was like to watch Trump talk about 'bad hombres' in a Mexican BBQ joint -- KATE LINTHICUM with L.A. Times; Trump's refusal on election results should surprise no one -- JOHN WILDERMUTH with The Chronicle.


A video with allegations of voter fraud within the DNC is causing waves on the internet and the mainstream media -- resulting in two Democratic ''political operatives'' being fired


DAVID WEIGEL with The Washington Post  "Robert Creamer, husband of Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., and Scott Foval -- two little-known but influential Democratic political operatives -- have left their jobs after video investigations by James O'Keefe's Project Veritas Action found them entertaining dark notions about how to win elections."


"Foval was laid off on Monday by Americans United for Change, where he had been national field director. Creamer announced Tuesday night that he was "stepping back" from the work he was doing for the unified Democratic campaign for Hillary Clinton."


"The moves came after 36 hours of coverage, led by conservative and social media, for O'Keefe's video series "Rigging the Election." In them, Foval is filmed telling hidden-camera toting journalists about how they've disrupted Republican events; Foval also goes on at length about how an organization might cover up in-person voter fraud. In another Tuesday night statement, the Creamer-founded Democracy Partners, which used Foval as a contractor, denounced both Project Veritas and the statements caught on camera."


See also: A detailed history of the Veritas Project's investigative history on WikiPedia:  Also, click here for an NPR report.


Gov. Brown is steadfast in his opposition to Proposition 53, and his allies are putting money against the measure.


JIM MILLER with Sacramento Bee: "The campaign against Proposition 53 has sharply picked up its fundraising in recent days, with Gov. Jerry Brown putting millions of dollars into the effort to defeat the Nov. 8 measure that would require a vote on state revenue bonds and potentially cripple the Brown-championed Delta water tunnel and bullet train projects."


"Through Tuesday, the no-on-53 effort had raised $5.6 million since Oct. 12, significantly more than campaigns for or against any of the other 17 measures on next month’s ballot during that time. The infusion gives the measure’s opponents – Brown, construction unions and Indian tribes – a clear financial advantage over proponents heading into the final weeks of campaigning."


"The no-on-53 campaign already is airing TV ads against the measure. Steve Maviglio, a spokesman for opponents, said the additional money will allow Brown and other members of the anti-53 coalition to step up the advertising as voters cast ballots by mail."


READ MORE related to Ballot Measures: With marijuana going legit, marketing blitz takes a hit -- PETER FIMRITE with The Chornicle; Why business groups aren't fighting California's tobacco and income tax hike initiatives -- LIAM DILLON with L.A. Times; California's gun control initiative would toughen already-strict laws -- ALEXEI KOSEFF with Sacramento Bee


And in transportation news,  Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is backing Jerry Brown's high-speed rail project.


JULIETT WILLIAMS with AP: "Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday that he no longer opposes California's $64 billion high-speed rail plan, after withdrawing support for the project more than two years ago."


"He told the Sacramento Press Club that he would "100 percent" seek a solid public funding source for the train project if he's elected governor in 2018."


"The Democratic former mayor of San Francisco is raising money for a bid when Gov. Jerry Brown is termed out then."


Meanwhile, the state govt.'s largest union, SEIU Local 1000, tangoes with the idea of a strike, unless Jerry Brown's administration can offer a raise agreeable to its members.


ADAM ASHTON with Sacramento Bee: "State government’s largest union is edging closer to a strike."


"SEIU Local 1000 President Yvonne Walker has called for a strike vote of the union’s 95,000 members beginning next week, according to a statement on the union website."


"The union is trying to get a bigger raise than the 2.96 percent pay hike Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration is offering. Brown’s proposal would raise SEIU salaries by 12 percent over four years, but also require its members to begin paying a contribution toward their retiree health care costs."


California may soon be the pioneer of stem cell therapy in the states after a $30 million effort by the state's stem cell agency has fast-tracked human testing.


DAVID JENSEN with Sacramento Bee: "The California stem cell agency on Wednesday completed creation of a $30 million effort to dramatically speed approval of stem cell therapies and establish the Golden State globally in the much-heralded regenerative medicine field."


"Dubbed the “pitching machine,” the two-part program is designed to pick up where basic stem cell research leaves off and to accelerate it through the all-important clinical trials involving humans. Such trials are required prior to widespread use of a therapy by the public and generally take years."


"With no debate, no questions and no discussion Wednesday, the governing board of the stem cell agency unanimously approved a $15 million award to QuintilesIMS in San Diego to help move basic research into clinical trials. The effective decision, however, was made Oct. 4 during a closed-door meeting of the agency’s scientific reviewers, who gave the proposal a score of 89 out of 100."


READ MORE related to Health: Alzheimer's Project wins $1 million federal grant -- PAUL SISSON with Union-Tribune


Speaking of state government, California's House incumbents have outfunded their opponents.


JOSHUA STEWART with The Union-Tribune: "It’s called the power of incumbency for a reason."


"In the two most competitive House races in San Diego County the sitting representatives out-raised their challengers, and are headed into the Nov. 8 election with vastly larger war chests at their disposal."


"Democrat Doug Applegate raised just over $605,000 in the last campaign finance period, his most productive quarter since launching his campaign, but he’s still behind incumbent Darrell Issa, R-Vista, who raised over $851,000. The campaign finance reporting period ran from July 1 to Sept. 30."


Navy Secretary Ray Mabus reflects on his tenure in a positive light as his exit from office looms.


CARL PRINE with Union-Trbine: "Raymond “Ray” Mabus is proud that he has made tough decisions as Navy secretary, regrets none of them and believes history will vindicate his often controversial seven and a half years in office, he said Wednesday aboard the San Diego-based amphibious assault ship America."


“If you’re not getting criticized, you’re not doing anything,” Mabus, 68, told The San Diego Union-Tribune in an exclusive interview."


"Mabus served as a former Navy officer aboard the missile cruiser Little Rock in the early 1970s, rose to become Mississippi’s governor, became an ambassador to Saudi Arabia and has now held the Navy’s top civilian position longer than anyone since World War I."


The housing and renter markets are expected to approach some semblance of stability over the next couple of years as the rate of mortgage/rent increases begin a downward trend.


PHIILLIP MOLNAR with Union-Tribine: "National home and rent price increases are expected to slow in the next two years, said a report of 51 economists and analysts released Tuesday."


"Average home prices will increase by 5 percent in 2017 and 4 percent in 2018 — down from the 5.8 percent increase in 2015 and 5.1 percent this year, said the Urban Land Institute’s Real Estate Consensus Forecast."


"Rent increases are also expected to slow down from the 4.5 percent rental increase in 2015 and 3.5 percent predicted for 2016, to 3 percent in 2017 and 2.9 percent in 2018."


The CHP are investigating the murder of a deputy that occurred last night. 


AP: "A sheriff’s deputy in a Northern California county near the Oregon border was shot to death Wednesday while responding to a disturbance call, the Modoc County Sheriff’s Office said."


"Deputies were responding to a call on County Road 115, in a rural area about 10 miles south of Alturas when the deputy was shot. A suspect was detained shortly after, the sheriff’s office said."


"The deputy’s name was not released pending the notification of family"