Former Rep. Doug Ose (R) “is considering a run for California governor. … He has begun showing up at more political events in recent weeks.”
“Ose, a Trump delegate at the 2016 national convention who said at the time he was finished with electoral politics,” said “he has grown tired of watching on the sidelines as politicians fail to tackle homelessness, under-performing schools, high taxes and housing markets across the state that have become out of reach for many Californians.”
Ose: “I know we can do better. … We know what the Democrats are going do. They are going to be captives of a Legislature dominated by Democrats. So I am taking a real look at the governor’s race.” (Sacramento Bee)
MONEY MATTERS. State Assemblyman Travis Allen (R) before he entered office gave about $25,000 “to the Democrats he now denounces—including [term-limited Gov. Jerry] Brown, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, the state Democratic Party and a congressman who has filed articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump. … Allen said his donations were the result of buying tickets to political events.” (Mercury News)
Former state Schools Superintendent Delaine Eastin (D) “made an average of $170,785 annually over the last six years and paid an average of $37,539 in state and federal taxes, according to … six years of her tax returns [released] on Tuesday.”
“Eastin made most of her income, about $88,525 annually, from the pension she receives from the California Public Employees’ Retirement System. The pension was earned from her years as state superintendent of public instruction and a state assemblywoman. She also made an average of $14,766 annually as an ‘educational consultant,’ working for a long list of school districts, universities, nonprofits, and private schools.” (Mercury News)
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The House Intelligence Committee voted to release the November 14 testimony of Glenn Simpson, the man at Fusion GPS who oversaw the creation of the now infamous Trump-Russia dossier. Simpson's testimony includes a number of startling claims, including that Russia infiltrated conservative political groups prior to the election, and that Trump has ties to the Italian and Russian Mafia. "We also had sort of more broadly learned that Mr. Trump had long time associations with Italian organized crime figures," he told the Committee, "And we pieced together...[that he] gradually during the nineties became associated with Russian mafia figures." Simpson also testified that Trump called off a post-election meeting with Alexander Torshin, the deputy governor of Russia’s central bank and a longtime member of the NRA, currently under investigation by the FBI for money laundering. Simpson said that the discoveries were so alarming that he felt compelled to go to the authorities. The full text of the transcript can be read here.
House Speaker Paul Ryan says he has the votes to pass a short-term spending bill tonight, but "Senate Democrats said they're confident they have the votes to block the stop-gap spending bill that the House is taking up, according to two Democratic senators and a senior party aide. And top Senate Republicans are openly worried about the situation as they struggle to keep their own members in the fold."
The bipartisan legislation, known as the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 Reform Act, means taxpayers will "no longer foot the bill" for sexual harassment settlements involving members of Congress." The legislation "would require members to pay such settlements themselves." It also reforms the "cumbersome and degrading" complaint process by giving victims "more rights and resources," and by simplifying and clarifying the complaint process. The legislation is the first major transformation of the sexual harassment complaint system since it was created in 1995.
"The FBI is investigating whether a top Russian banker with ties to the Kremlin illegally funneled money to the National Rifle Association to help Donald Trump win the presidency." Investigators have focused on Alexander Torshin, the deputy governor of Russia’s central bank "who is known for his close relationships with both Russian President Vladimir Putin and the NRA." The solicitation or use of foreign funds is illegal in U.S. elections under the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) by either lobbying groups or political campaigns. The NRA reported spending a record $55 million on the 2016 elections.