Blog

10 Mar
0

Replacing Rubio

By Jesse Franz

California State Senator Michael Rubio has resigned prompting a special election for the state’s 16th Senatorial District, which includes part of Fresno County.

Although the special election’s date is not yet certain, already speculation on who will run to replace Rubio is in overdrive. Early rumors had favored Assembly Member Henry T. Perea. However, in a statement released last week, Perea said, “While the opportunity to serve in the California State Senate is appealing, I made a commitment to my constituents to serve and meet the needs of my Assembly district. I also made a commitment to my wife and family to create a balance between my home life and work.”

However, at least three other Democratic candidates have expressed interest in the seat. Fran Florez, former 30th Assembly District candidate, though she hasn’t officially announced, released a statement through social media saying, “I know those who are considering throwing their hat into the ring to replace Michael Rubio, and I feel that I am the only candidate in this group who is familiar with and has run in Fresno, Kern, Kings and Tulare counties. I have the name recognition and base of support to bring this home for the Democratic Party. No doubt, the polls will prove this. So, expect an announcement soon that will ensure that the Senate leadership has the best candidate in the base of our district.”

Another highly speculated candidate is Kern County Supervisor Leticia Perez. In a statement, she said, “This is not an easy decision, and my family and I recognize that we will face a mountain of criticism no matter what choice we make. This weekend I will be in close contact with my family, friends, and closest advisers to determine what is the right decision in these very unexpected circumstances, I will announce my decision after the Governor makes an announcement regarding the special election. Please keep my family in your thoughts and prayers.”

Former member of the Hanford High School Board Alfred Benavides has already announced that he will seek the seat. He told the Hanford Sentinel, “I’m probably the biggest long shot in the race,” and said that he plans to run a grassroots campaign.

The Republican field is not quite so clear. Names like Delano Republican Pedro Rios and Bakersfield City Council Member Russell Johnson have surfaced. However, many Republican strategists like former Assembly member and Democrat turned no party preference Nicole Parra.

Whoever runs will be doing so in the 2010 lines of the 16th Senatorial district and will hold the seat at least until the 2014 midterm election. During the special election, if one candidate gets more than 50% of the vote, he/she will win the seat. However, if the winner in not so clear, then there will be a runoff to determine the winner of the seat. Political speculators believe that the latter is more probable considering the large pool that is expected to campaign for the office.

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10 Mar
0

Violence Against Women Act

By Jesse Franz

On Feb. 26, Congress reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The bill was originally created in 1994 under the leadership of then Senator Joe Biden. It improved criminal justice responses to domestic violence and ensured that victims have access to services for their safety and in order to rebuild their lives after the trauma. However, Republican Representative Tom McClintock, whose district encompasses part of Fresno County, voted against reauthorization.

McClintock claimed that he voted no on the VAWA because of a provision that seeks to protect women on tribal lands, mandatory minimum sentences for domestic abusers and because of the grant money it would allocate to programs that assist and protect those who fall victim to abuse.

Since the VAMA was first ratified in 1994 the rate of intimate partner violence has fallen by 67%. The rate of intimate partner homicide has fallen 35% for women and 46% for males, and more victims are reporting domestic violence to police creating more arrests for abuse. Also, it has led to the creation of the National Domestic Violence Hotline, which has received more than 3,000,000 calls since its creation, and 92% of those callers report that it was their first attempt to reach out for help (this being one of the programs that McClintock does not want to spend federal money on).

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07 Mar
0

Get your tickets today for our ‘We The People’ Annual Fundraiser, scheduled April 19

logoGet your tickets for the Fresno County Democratic Party’s Annual Fundraiser Dinner Dance, scheduled 5:30-11 p.m. Friday, April 19, at International Catering, 4227 N. West Ave., in Fresno.

Meet your elected officials at the dinner, and help the Fresno County Democratic Party honor several  community leaders and volunteers, including:

  • Dee Barnes
  • Humberto Gomez
  • Marina Magdaleno
  • Howard Watkins

Tickets are $75 each, and event sponsorships are available. Proceeds go to help the Fresno County Democratic Party accomplish its mission.

Purchase your tickets online today through ActBlue. For more information contact Fresno County Democratic Headquarters at (559) 495-0606, or via e-mail at fresnocountydemocrats@yahoo.com.

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07 Mar
0

FCDCC approves resolution: Fracking Resolution in lieu of a moratorium

At its March 6 General Meeting, the Fresno County Democratic Central Committee approved the following resolution:

Fracking Resolution in lieu of a moratorium:

WHEREAS the California state regulatory agency of oil and gas drilling, the Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR), has been too close to the oil and gas industry for decades and their regulatory process is outdated, not transparent to the public, and even allowed fracking to occur without permits or any other form of specific approval for over 50 years; and

WHEREAS the first-ever draft fracking regulations for California were released by DOGGR this past December and they were universally criticized by the environmental community as not going far enough, for allowing the industry to keep the chemicals they use secret, for not providing notice of fracking to neighbors, and for not revealing where they get their water from, among other problems. Therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED that the Fresno County Democratic Central Committee (FCDCC) asks the California State Legislature to pass legislation (there are at least seven bills on the subject that have been introduced this session) and asks Jerry Brown to sign them, so that our state regulatory agency, DOGGR, ceases to rubber-stamp drilling permits, requires a permit for all forms of oil drilling, including fracking, is more transparent and public-oriented, requires adequate bonding levels for the industry, and assures the wastewater generated by the industry is properly disposed of, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the FCDCC will notify all state legislators representing Fresno County in order to engage with them, and their staff, to promote this legislative agenda.

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07 Mar
0

FCDCC approves resolution: Aspartame and Dairy

At its March 6 General Meeting, the Fresno County Democratic Central Committee approved the following resolution:

Aspartame Resolution

WHEREAS the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) and the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) have filed a petition with the FDA asking the FDA to alter the definition of “milk” and other dairy products; including yogurt, cream, sour cream, eggnog, whipping cream, and others; to secretly include chemical sweeteners such as aspartame and sucralose;

WHEREAS if the petition is successful, these chemical sweeteners would not be required to be listed on the label;

WHEREAS these chemical sweeteners are scientifically proven to cause seizures and other serious medical illnesses

BE IT THEN RESOLVED that the FCDCC opposes such alteration of the definition of milk and other dairy products to allow chemical additives to dairy products and supports transparent labeling of milk and all foodstuffs so that consumers can be aware of what they are purchasing;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the FCDCC will notify local, state, and federal representatives of said petition to request in the strongest possible language that our representatives oppose the petition.

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