Assemblyman Travis Allen (R) “said Thursday that he plans to enter next year’s contest. … Allen, who announced his intentions to his large social media following, could pair his uphill candidacy with his existing proposal to repeal the recently signed $52 billion vehicle tax and fee package designed to pay for the state’s aging roads and transportation projects.” (Sacramento Bee)
Allen could also find success by looking “as conservative as” Assemblyman Tim Donnelly (D) “did in 2014. Donnelly, the conservative firebrand, finished third in the primary in 2014, behind Gov. Jerry Brown (D) and a more moderate Republican, Neel Kashkari. But it wasn’t conservatism that held Donnelly back. Republicans in California aren’t any more centrist than Republicans in other states, and Donnelly was leading Kashkari in public opinion polls for much of the race. He only fell behind when Kashkari tacked hard to the right and used his financial advantage to target Republicans with mail depicting Donnelly, disingenuously, as a more liberal choice.”
“This election, a crowd of higher-profile Democrats are all competing for the top two spots, and the big concern for every Republican - including Allen and” businessman John Cox (R) “- is that the GOP will split the ballot and two Democrats will advance. … The winners in Allen’s announcement:” former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) and state Treasurer John Chiang (D), who are “running behind” Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) “and hoping the No. 2 slot goes to a Democrat.”
In other news, there’s an “automated poll in the field testing potential match-ups in the 2018 races for governor and state attorney general. In the gubernatorial contest, the poll asks about only one potential candidate who has not yet announced: state Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León (D). … De León’s camp says it isn’t being done by him.” (Politico)
What We're Following See More »
"Two days after President Trump’s summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Russian officials offered a string of assertions about what the two leaders had achieved. 'Important verbal agreements' were reached at the Helsinki meeting, Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, told reporters in Moscow Wednesday, including preservation of the New Start and INF agreements," and cooperation in Syria.
"Two weeks before his inauguration, Donald J. Trump was shown highly classified intelligence indicating that President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia had personally ordered complex cyberattacks to sway the 2016 American election. The evidence included texts and emails from Russian military officers and information gleaned from a top-secret source close to Mr. Putin, who had described to the C.I.A. how the Kremlin decided to execute its campaign of hacking and disinformation. Mr. Trump sounded grudgingly convinced, according to several people who attended the intelligence briefing. But ever since, Mr. Trump has tried to cloud the very clear findings that he received on Jan. 6, 2017, which his own intelligence leaders have unanimously endorsed."