Constitutional fight

Jul 17, 2018

Judge's order that Times alter article sparks 1st Amendment fight


LA Times's MAURA DOLAN: "A federal judge’s decision ordering the Los Angeles Times to remove information it had published about a criminal case has sparked a battle over free speech that legal scholars said weighed in favor of the media."


"U.S. District Judge John F. Walter issued the order after The Times published information on its website about a plea agreement between prosecutors and a former Glendale police detective accused of working with the Mexican Mafia."


"The Times complied with the order but appealed it. Walter, appointed by former President George W. Bush, has scheduled an 8:30 a.m. hearing Tuesday to consider The Times’ challenge."


Living with Janus, unions adapt


DYLAN SVOBODA in Capitol Weekly: "Despite the U.S. Supreme Court’s split decision dealing a significant blow to public unions, California union leaders remain optimistic about their ability to stay viable."


"We’ve got our work cut out for us, but people understand the value that the union brings to their lives and institutions,” said Matthew Hardy, a spokesperson for the California Federation of Teachers."


"In the Janus v. AFSCME (the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees) decision on June 25, the nine-member high court stripped government unions’ ability to require workers who choose not to join unions to help pay for collective bargaining, now giving workers the choice on whether they support the union or not. The 5-4 decision found that public unions violated the First Amendment by compelling nonunion member workers to fund union activity."


California Republicans facing tough races go easy on Trump


The Chronicle's JOE GAROFOLI: "Several nationally prominent Republicans voiced anger and disbelief over President Trump’s performance at his joint news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin. But California Republicans running in congressional races that could determine control of the House weren’t among them."


"Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain said Trump’s comments deflecting Russian blame for interfering in the 2016 presidential election amounted to “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory.” Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska called Trump’s attitude “bizarre,” and GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina said it was a “sign of weakness.”


"However, in an indication of how careful Republicans are to not offend Trump’s supporters during a tight election, the nine Republicans running in California congressional districts that Democrats hope to pry from GOP control in November were either restrained in their reactions or silent."


Big money pours in for Dems in key California races


LA Times's CHRISTINE MAI-DUC: "In what has already been a banner year for Democratic fundraising, candidates hoping to flip GOP-held House seats in California just hit another benchmark: Five of them running in competitive races raised more than $1 million in just three months."


"That’s a stunning feat when you consider only two House challengers had raised $1 million total by this point in 2016. No candidate for Congress in California, incumbents included, brought in $1 million during the same three-month period two years ago."


Democratic challenger raises more than three times as much as Tom McClintock


McClatchy DC's EMILY CADEI: "Democratic challenger Jessica Morse outraised Republican Rep. Tom McClintock by a more than three-to-one margin as the two geared up for a general election clash in the 4th District congressional race."


"McClintock, however, started July with slightly more money in the bank."


"The five-term incumbent raised $112,000 in the six-week span between May 17 and June 30, a fraction of the $392,000 that Morse, a first-time candidate, raised. It’s the fourth quarter in a row that Morse has outraised McClintock, who has not faced a competitive challenge since being elected to Congress in 2008."


ICE takes aim at SF sanctuary city law in 'Rideshare Rapist' case 


The Chronicle's STEVE RUBENSTEIN: "U.S. immigration officials took aim at San Francisco’s sanctuary city law Monday in the case of the San Mateo man accused of being the “Rideshare Rapist."


"In a statement, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency said the city’s policy of not honoring ICE holds “shields criminal aliens who prey on the community."


"The suspect, Orlando Vilchez Lazo, 36, is being held in jail in San Francisco in lieu of $4.2 million bail and faces life in prison in connection with the rapes of four women who got into his car believing him to be a ride-hail driver, police said."


READ MORE related to Immigration: Judge temporarily halts deportations of reunified f amilies -- LA Times's KATE MORRISSEY


China challenges fairness of US tariffs, asks WTO to intervene


LA Times's ROBYN DIXON: "China on Monday presented itself as a bastion of international order and global rules on trade while announcing its filing of a World Trade Organization challenge against a threat of $200 billion more in tariffs by the United States."


"A Chinese government spokeswoman said fair trade called for international rules that were made collectively. The U.S., however, had helped shape WTO rules for its own benefit, she said."


Diplomats say it's settled. They can't rely on Trump.


McClatchy DC's ANITA KUMAR/FRANCO ORDONEZ/TIM JOHNSON: "President Donald Trump’s extraordinary remarks Monday, siding with Russian President Vladmir Putin’s denials of 2016 campaign meddling over U.S. intelligence agencies’ conclusion, has left U.S. and foreign diplomats worried that the United States will no longer be a reliable partner, will no longer defend other countries and will no longer stand up to its adversaries."


"Trump, they say, is clearly out on his own with his controversial views but as president of the United States he could change decades of precedence."


"By walking away from that in such a blatant way in front of the guy who we all know was responsible, he has put this country in a position that I cannot think of an American president ever putting us in,” said James Jeffrey, who served in the administration of Republican President George W. Bush as U.S. ambassador to Iraq and Turkey and deputy national security adviser. “We’re not going to be able to mobilize anybody for anything after this unless he shows real toughness toward Russia, which kind of undercuts the whole purpose of going over there."


READ MORE related to POTUS45/KremlinGate/Helsinki: 'Disgraceful': Reeps sharply criticize POTUS' behavior at summit -- LA Times's SARAH D WIRE; Sifting through the wreckage of Trump's EU tour for signs of a foreign policy -- LA Times's TRACY WILKINSON


Ruling over killer whale attack reflects Kavanaugh's view of workplace regulations


The Chronicle's BOB EGELKO: "When a killer whale drowned and dismembered a trainer at a SeaWorld park in Florida in 2010, federal labor officials fined the park $12,000 and required protective measures — over the objection of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, who predicted in a written opinion that the next step would be a ban on tackling in pro football."


"Tiger taming ... bull riding ... stock car racing ... boxing. ... The participants in those activities want to take part, sometimes even to make a career of it,despite and occasionally because of the risk of serious injury,” Kavanaugh wrote in April 2014. “When should we as a society paternalistically decide that the participants in these sports and entertainment activities must be protected from themselves?"


"He was dissenting from a 2-1 ruling of the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., that found ample evidence that SeaWorld’s previous safety program was inadequate, that close contact between killer whales and trainers wasn’t essential to the park’s shows, and that the spectacle wasn’t a sport. The majority included the court’s chief judge, Merrick Garland."


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