We Have a Long Way to Go: Anti-Hillary Clinton Buttons Stir Controversy

I have so much to learn. Here I am, thinking that the best way to criticize a politician with whom you either disagree, or who you simply do not like, is to explain why her policies or even personality bother you and why. How wrong can one person be?

The California Republican party recently held its annual convention. On display at the convention were anti-Hillary buttons. Fair enough, right? Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is a Democrat. So it is entirely predictable, even rational, that the members of the Grand Old Party would take aim at the presumptive front-runner for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 presidential election.

One can argue that it is not only rational, but in fact it is the job of one major political party to point out the differences that they have with the other major political party. These criticisms and discussions help to elucidate important distinctions between the parties and allow voters to make informed decisions at the ballot box. Voters need to know what the major political parties, and the politicians affiliated with those parties, stand for and believe in.

L.A. City Council: Candidates for 2015 Races Start to Fill Up

The pool of Los Angeles City Council candidates expanded today to include Council President Herb Wesson Jr., who filed fundraising papers for the 2015 election with the city Ethics Commission.

Wesson can now raise money for a bid to keep his 10th Council District seat for a third and last term. He represents Mid-City, Koreatown, and South Los Angeles communities and is serving a second yearlong term as council president.

Other incumbents seeking re-election are 14th district City Councilman Jose Huizar and 6th district City Councilwoman Nury Martinez. Huizar's Eastside district includes part of downtown, Boyle Heights and northeast Los Angeles communities of El Sereno and Glassell Park. Martinez filled the San Fernando Valley-based 6th district seat vacated earlier this year by Tony Cardenas.

Appearances Matter in Politics, Especially When You're Under Investigation

Photo: Courtesy Office of Senator Ronald Calderon

Here is another entry for the "politicians exercising questionable judgment" file cabinet, which, unfortunately, continues to fill up on a daily basis.

California State Senator Ronald Calderon is the subject of a federal corruption investigation. Let that sentence linger for a moment, shall we? Calderon is a public servant; by definition he should be serving the public, in this case his constituents. His first responsibility is to represent those in his state senate district. But there is now some question as to whether he is doing that, or whether he used his office for personal gain.

In this situation it would behoove any representative to be particularly thoughtful and careful, to attempt to make decisions which give no fodder to an already-distrustful public. Unfortunately, Calderon appears not to have done that.

An Open Letter to San Diego Mayor Bob Filner

Dear Mayor Bob Filner,

You do not know me, but like the rest of the sane individuals following your sexual harassment scandal, let me tell you, it is time to resign. Actually, allow me to restate that: It was time to resign weeks ago.

First, let me say I do believe in the fundamental principle that people are innocent until proven guilty. You have yet to have been found liable or guilty of anything in a court of law. But here is a news flash for you: You are an elected official. Members of the electorate went to the ballot box and put their faith in you to represent them fairly and honestly. You are failing to do that.

Now, you may ask, does it set a bad precedent to tell an official to resign just because he is accused of wrong doing? The answer is, it absolutely would if that were what I'm advocating, but I am not. The sheer volume of the complaints lodged against you is stunning. The substance of the complaints -- a myriad of unwanted sexual advances -- is deplorable.

Millions Wasted on Upgrading Voting Systems

Voting is called a preservative right, meaning it helps to preserve other rights.

The ability to exercise one's right to vote is a fundamental part of any functioning democracy. What does this ability entail? For one, those who are eligible to be able to vote should be able to do so easily. Further, once registered, voters should be able to go to the polls or mail in a ballot with relative ease as well. Finally, voters should be assured that when they cast their ballots the voting systems accurately read and record their votes. It should go without saying that each vote must be fairly and correctly counted.

Should Legal Immigrants Be Allowed to Work at Election Polls?

In my book, the majority of people who pass certain eligibility requirements and wish to serve as poll workers should be welcomed and thanked, not excluded and turned away. Working at the polls is important, often tedious and monotonous job. Election day is virtually guaranteed to be a long day for anyone serving at the polls.

There is now a bill headed to Gov. Jerry Brown that would let some legal immigrants to serve as poll workers. Which legal immigrants you may ask? Well, legal permanent residents who would be eligible to vote if they were citizens.

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