Gunman kills 12 in 'horrific' mass shooting at Thousand Oaks bar packed with college students
From the LATimes' JAMES QUEALLY , RICHARD WINTON , ALENE TCHEKMEDYIAN , SEAN GREENE , SARAH PARVINI , BRITTNY MEJIA and ANDREA CASTILLO: "A gunman threw smoke bombs and rained bullets on a crowd of hundreds inside a Thousand Oaks bar Wednesday night, killing a dozen people including a Ventura County Sheriff’s Department sergeant who was trying to stop the carnage."
"Authorities have not yet identified the gunman, who died in the incident, or any of the victims inside the bar."
"The gunman was dressed in black when he burst into the Borderline Bar & Grill, a country-music-themed venue that is popular with college students, around 11:20 p.m., according to Sheriff Geoff Dean."
READ MORE about the attack: 12 Killed in California Shooting; Gunman Targeted Bar in Thousand Oaks -- NY Times' JOSE A. DEL REAL, GERRY MULLANY and RUSSELL GOLDMAN; 12 people killed, including sheriff’s deputy, in ‘horrific’ California bar shooting, police say -- Washington Post's ISAAC STANLEY BECKER, ALLYSON CHIU, ANTONIA NOORI FARZAN and LINDSEY BEVER
Democrats on verge of supermajority in both houses of CA Legislature
The Chronicle's MELODY GUTIERREZ: "Democrats appear poised to reclaim a supermajority in both houses of the Legislature, while potentially hitting a 4-decade-old high-water mark in the Assembly."
"Senate Democrats needed to hold all their seats up for re-election Tuesday and pick up a Republican district to grab the supermajority, a two-thirds voting threshold that enables them to pass virtually any legislation without GOP help."
"Democrats now hold 26 of 40 Senate seats and needed one more to get to the supermajority of 27."
FBI raids home and offices of LA City Councilman Jose Huizar
LA Times's DAVID ZAHNISER/JOEL RUBIN/EMILY ALPERT REYES/ANDREA CASTILL O: "The scene could have been out of a movie: more than a dozen FBI agents striding out of elevators on the fourth floor of Los Angeles City Hall and descending on the office of Councilman Jose Huizar."
"By lunchtime Wednesday, federal investigators had served search warrants on Huizar’s City Hall suite, one of his field offices and his Spanish Colonial Revival residence in Boyle Heights, carrying boxes of materials from at least two of those locations."
"The agents’ coordinated operation, described by neighbors and a handful of city employees, delivered a serious jolt to City Hall, which has not experienced such a flurry of investigative activity in more than a decade."
Trump ousts Jeff Sessions in midterm electon fallout
The Chronicle's ERIC TUCKER: "Attorney General Jeff Sessions was pushed out Wednesday as the country’s chief law enforcement officer after enduring more than a year of blistering and personal attacks from President Trump over his recusal from the Russia investigation."
"Sessions told the president in a one-page letter that he was submitting his resignation “at your request."
"Trump announced in a tweet that he was naming Sessions’ Chief of Staff Matthew Whitaker, a former U.S. attorney from Iowa, as acting attorney general. Whitaker has criticized Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into potential coordination between the president’s Republican campaign and Russia."
Wildfire threats could lead top PG&E to cut power to parts of nine counties
The Chronicle's ASHLEY MCBRIDE/KURTIS ALEXANDER: "Extreme fire danger in Northern California this week prompted PG&E on Wednesday to warn of possible power outages as the company considers shutting off electricity to keep downed wires from sparking a blaze."
"About 70,000 customers across nine counties, including parts of the North Bay, were scheduled to receive notifications about the preemptive blackouts, which would begin Thursday and mark just the second time the utility has employed such a fire-prevention tactic."
"Last month, officials at Pacific Gas and Electric Co. turned off power for two days for up to 60,000 people during a period of strong winds. The utility was widely praised for heeding the lessons of last year’s deadly Northern California wildfires, many of which were blamed on sparks from power lines, though some criticized the outages as an unnecessary inconvenience."
Gov. Gavin Newsom will need to set rules of engagement with President Trump
The Chronicle's JOE GAROFOLI: "Resistance leader Gavin Newsom has a relationship to re-evaluate now that he’s Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom: How should he deal with President Trump?"
"As with any relationship assessment, analysts say Newsom needs to figure out when to respond to what his antagonist says and when to ignore it. In other words, the former San Francisco mayor, who called the president a “small, scared bully” during his campaign, needs a Trump Engagement Policy — one in which Newsom dukes it out with Trump on issues that matter most to California, like immigration and the environment, and ignores Trump’s tweetstorm du jour."
"Twitter wars are just not worth his energy as governor — or his constituents’ time."
Hundreds of thousands of votes left to count in Sacramento County
Sacramento Bee's RYAN LILLIS: "Sacramento County elections officials cautioned Wednesday they could have as many as 400,000 ballots left to count, leaving the outcome of some school board, city council and measure races unsettled for weeks."
"The number of outstanding ballots also means voter turnout may have set a record this election."
"The county elections office has counted 185,623 ballots as of Wednesday morning. Another 185,000 ballots have been processed but not yet counted, department officials said."
READ MORE related to Midterm Elections: See how every Sacramento neighborhood voted in 2018 general election -- Sacramento Bee's PHILLIP REESE/MICHAEL FINCH II; District 10 cliff-hanger race between Denham and harder still teetering -- McClatchy DC's GARTH STAPLEY; What it was like watching election night with Nancy Pelosi -- The Chronicle's TAL KOPAN; How a tweet turned Prop. C from an underdog to a winner -- The Chronicle's HEATHER KNIGHT; For the first time in 20 years, OC district attorney faces serious challenge as votes tallied -- LA Times's LAURA NEWBERRY
Newsom and Brown wade into California water wars to delay plan to help fish
Sacramento Bee's RYAN SABALOW: "Gov. Jerry Brown and incoming Gov. Gavin Newsom have waded in one of California’s fiercest water wars, prompting state regulators to delay a key vote on a proposal meant to help struggling salmon and steelhead trout."
"In a letter Tuesday to the California State Water Resources Board, Brown and Newsom urged it to postpone consideration of proposed regulations to give the various factions involved time to reach an agreement during confidential settlement talks."
"The board was scheduled Wednesday to vote on a plan that would leave up to 40 percent of the water in lower San Joaquin River and its tributaries in their channels to benefit struggling fish. The move would mean more water will flow to the Pacific Ocean rather than be captured by dams or shunted into canals to grow crops and supply cities such as Modesto and San Francisco."
Get ready for 2020: Which Democrat can win presidential delegates in California?
McClatchy DC's EMILY CADEI: "Californians suffering from political campaign fatigue beware: Tuesday night may have been the end of the 2018 midterm election, but it also marked the beginning of the 2020 presidential race."
'California’s move to a March 3 primary date, from June, means the state will once again be in the middle of a national political battle, this time to help determine the Democratic nominee to take on President Donald Trump."
"California is going to have a spotlight shining on it like never before,” said Steve Smith, spokesman for the California Labor Federation. “We really want to use that opportunity to get the candidates out here as much as possible and have them address important issues not only to workers in California but workers everywhere.”
A vice mayor called gay men fairies and declared his 'straight pride.' Now, he's out of office.
Sacramento Bee's MICHAEL MCGOUGH: "A Northern California vice mayor who was heavily criticized earlier this year after writing a newspaper column that many people viewed as homophobic lost his city council seat by a landslide vote Tuesday night."
"Ted Hickman was defeated for Dixon City Council District 2 by the city’s planning commissioner, Jim Ernest, who picked up 72 percent of the vote with all ballots counted."
"Hickman faced widespread backlash starting in late June after publication of a controversial column he penned for Dixon’s Independent Voice newspaper."
Voters want year-round daylight saving time. It still faces a tough road
Sacramento Bee's BRYAN ANDERSON: "Sick and tired of sleeping in too late, waking up too early and forgetting to reset their clocks, California voters backed a ballot measure Tuesday to stop changing time twice a year."
"It’s a complicated plan that could soon blossom."
"A substantial 60 percent of voters approved Proposition 7, which unwinds a 1949 ballot measure that imposed daylight saving time on the Golden State for half the year."
California turned down rent control, but will Sacramento do it anyway?
Sacramento Bee's TONY BIZJAK: "Rent control advocates in Sacramento on Wednesday said they will push forward with a local renter-relief ballot measure, despite the decisive defeat this week of Prop. 10, a statewide effort to curb rent hikes."
"We are absolutely moving forward,” Michelle Pariset of non-profit group Public Advocates Inc. “Our local rental market is out of whack."
"Her group, in conjunction with local labor unions, obtained enough signatures this summer to qualify a measure for the local 2020 ballot. The proposal, called the “Sacramento Community Stabilization and Fair Rent Charter Amendment,” stipulates that annual allowable rent increases could range from a maximum of 2 percent per year up to a maximum of 5 percent each year."
Trump turns his post-election reckoning into an operatic performance of grievances and pugilism
LA Times's NOAH BIERMAN: "President George W. Bush would blow off steam by clearing brush from his ranch. President Obama would sneak a soupcon of almonds or a cigarette. President Trump’s happy place: duking it out with a roomful of pestering reporters."
"Trump turned his post-election news conference on Wednesday — normally an occasion for presidents to lick wounds and move on after midterm losses — into a nearly 90-minute political tour de force for the president who loves as much as anything to put on a pugilistic performance."
"He took no blame for the type of humbling losses that Bush called a “thumpin’ ” in 2006 or Obama acknowledged as a “shellacking” in 2010, when they similarly presided over their party’s loss of at least one house of Congress."