MICRA initiative gathers millions for November election battle

Jul 30, 2014

You should expect a bombardment of Proposition 46 political ads this fall.


John Howard reports in Capitol Weekly: "Foes are raising campaign cash 10-to-1 over proponents."


"The measure would raise the $250,000 ceiling on pain-and-suffering damages in medical malpractice lawsuits, a limit that was signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown during his first term as governor nearly 40 years ago.  But critics of that law, led by some consumer groups and attorneys, have long complained that the cap in the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act, or MICRA, was inadequate and hurt the ability of malpractice victims to get top-flight attorneys to fight damages."


While in Mexico, Jerry Brown continues to speak on the issue of immigrant minors.


David Siders reports for the Sacramento Bee: "Brown said Obama "does have the obligation to enforce the laws of the United States, which also include laws regarding refugees, and it is an excruciatingly difficult set of choices that he faces, and I would recommend very careful steps, and to call upon the Congress, both parties, to work through some more decent, humanitarian solutions.""


"The border crisis has been a diversion for Brown, who said little about the situation ahead of his trip. He previously described the issue as primarily a federal responsibility and planned to focus talks in Mexico on trade and the environment. But days before leaving California, Brown hastily arranged his meeting with the religious leaders, and he used public interest in the border crossings to herald the state's overall "very sympathetic" treatment of immigrants from Mexico."


San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed goes against his party in endorsing the Republican candidate in the race for state controller.


John Wildermuth reports for the San Francisco Chronicle: "Reed’s decision to give the cold shoulder to Betty Yee, the state Board of Equalization member who is the Democrats’ choice in the Nov. 4 race, shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Reed, who has always been well out on the conservative edge of the Democratic Party, is termed out of office this year and has even less reason now to go blue."


"Even before Reed was elected in a landslide back in 2006, local Democrats grumbled that the Air Force veteran and land-use attorney was way too conservative for the South Bay. But with San Jose on the brink of financial disaster, voters liked his tough stand on public spending and re-elected him with 77 percent of the vote in 2010."


Voting rights activists sue Santa Barbara for alleged violationis.


Jean Merl reports for the Los Angeles Times: "Santa Barabara Mayor Helene Schneider called the lawsuit premature and said the city had already authorized a study of its elections."

"The plaintiffs allege the city's at-large elections system "has resulted in vote dilution for Latino residents and has denied them effective political participation in elections to the Santa Barbara City Council.""


California's still in extreme drought conditions, but you wouldn't know that by judging UCLA's campus yesterday.


Chris Woodyard reports for USA Today:  "No injuries were reported from the flooding at UCLA, and many students used the occasion to wade down steps that became waterfalls. Some broke out floats and were pulled through the accumulated water."


"Patrick Huggins and Mattahew Bamberger, 18-year-old residents of nearby Westwood, shot video of themselves splashing in water up to their thighs on the school's practice putting green."


""I thought this is a good day for a little dip," Huggins said."


Drought remains a major concern for the state's craft brewing industry.


Brianna Sacks reports for the Los Angeles Times: ""We are at the maximum growth threshold here in California because of water," said Leon Sharyon, chief financial officer for Lagunitas, which uses nearly 2 million gallons of river water a year at its Petaluma brewery."


"Breweries run through an average of four to seven gallons of water to end up with one gallon of beer. With California in the midst of a water crisis, breweries are scrambling."