It’s difficult to be a Republican in the California Legislature.
Earlier this year when Sen. Janet Nguyen was eliminated from the Senate chamber, it was clear that Senate Republicans were upset for their colleague but also delighted– delighted– to be in the spotlight for a modification.
Add to that being a first-term legislator, and representing a reasonably rural area, and that’s a dish for a pretty low profile.
Yet Republican Assemblyman Randy Voepel is getting observed.
Part of that is thanks to his tie collection (a story for another day), however primarily it’s because of his social media presence.
Following Gov. Jerry Brown’s State of the State address, Voepel published a defense utilizing the online tool Genius. He’s promoted for costs by publishing listicles on Medium that are heavy on cat GIFs. Mostly, however, he makes a mark using Twitter, where his messages integrate policy updates with memes. So many memes.
Help United States Raise $100k By the End of May
The moment you get your second bill of the day (AB 353) through committee pic.twitter.com/nKmennUs9D
— Asm. Randy Voepel (@RandyVoepel) April 20, 2017
#GasTaxFacts: Meanwhile, Assembly Republican politicians have a strategy that totally funds roadway repair works AND traffic relief without raising taxes. 7/7 pic.twitter.com/6A4Vky9a4t
— Asm. Randy Voepel (@RandyVoepel) April 4, 2017
Another bill, AB561, the Pension Sustainability Act, has passed it’s very first committee with unanimous support! pic.twitter.com/4U8pTNepXe
— Asm. Randy Voepel (@RandyVoepel) April 3, 2017
Mason Herron, Voepel’s chief of personnel, is the social media expert behind the assemblyman’s online existence. Today, he and I talked via e-mail about his technique.
Most of the assemblyman’s tweets and other social media posts have a truly funny aspect to them– a terrific GIF or meme to magnify the point, for example. Exists a method behind them beyond simply being funny?
There’s a lot of material being pushed out constantly on Twitter, so it gets hard to stand apart– specifically as an elected authorities talking about legal problems. He typically wants to approach most things in a various way, and is open to taking threats, therefore it’s no surprise his Twitter account has actually taken that instructions. For the most part the tweets stay with legislative concerns, however in a way that makes them stand out more than the basic “My costs passed out of committee” tweets. The long-lasting goal is to have a big and engaged Twitter following so when there’s a concern of considerable importance he wishes to discuss, people will already be listening.
That being stated, in some cases being amusing is an end in itself.
The posts have actually gotten a lot of attention from press reporters and other lawmakers. Do you think they’ve raised his profile beyond exactly what a first-term legislator from Santee might otherwise have?
It appears that way, and a handful of individuals have made that observation. Acquiring higher visibility within the Sacramento landscape has its benefits, however only if it rollovers to protection of the problems the assemblyman is concentrated on. Republican politicians don’t get as much attention up here as Democrats, for obvious factors, so the goal is to change that trend nevertheless you can. In my employer’ case, it indicates taking a more innovative and outside-the-box approach to social networks.
Uncertain if you’ll appreciate this contrast, but the assemblyman’s social media footprint advises me of Hillary Clinton’s– because her posts with references to Beyonce and Buzzfeed didn’t always represent her character but did represent the audience she was attempting to reach. Does Assemblyman Voepel understand all the references you’re putting out there? Does he ever say something is excessive? Exactly what’s the process like?
In some cases there needs to be some contextual discussion regarding tweets that consist of with DJ Khaled or the BBC interview, however he understands that eventually you have to message to your audience properly. And by doing that he’s been able to bring in much more Democrats and more youthful individuals than I think he would have otherwise, and they’ll periodically chime in stating that while they do not concur with his stands on concerns, they still value the method he communicates and will stay engaged.
So far there’s been willingness on his part to pursue and accept pretty much anything, which is a vital frame of mind to have. Politics is an industry of danger hostility, so having the ability to break free of that can be empowering. It’s a “no danger, no benefit” technique.
What have been the responses to Assemblyman Voepel’s tweets and other posts?
Surprise, mostly. But also extremely positive. There’s an appreciation that he’s doing something different in a favorable manner. That, and pretty much everyone likes memes.
‘ Let’s Do Something Big’
More information have actually come out over the last couple weeks about Sen. Toni Atkins and Sen. Ricardo Lara’s strategy to move California to a single-payer healthcare system, Healthy California.
This analysis dropped ahead of the Senate Health Committee hearing on the bill today, and it sheds more light on how the system would work:
– The program would be an independent state entity overseen by an unpaid board selected by lawmakers and the governor.
– Every resident of California, no matter immigration status, would be eligible.
– Locals would pick their providers.
– Private health insurance companies could just provide advantages and services that aren’t covered by Healthy California.
The huge impressive question, like with any enormously ambitious proposal, is how we ‘d pay for all of this. Here’s how the Mercury News explained the financing approach, and its spaces:
Lara and Atkins are depending on the federal government’s approval to divert $261 billion of federal dollars currently sent out to California to pay for Medicaid, Medicare, and the Affordable Care Act, among other programs. Under this new program, that cash would be reserved in a trust fund.
But the expense to cover everyone else who has employer-provided insurance would be shocking: about $106.5 billion in tax income, inning accordance with a UCLA Center for Health Policy Research research study.
At the hearing today, Atkins and Lara both said that California has made substantial strides in guaranteeing its locals, but that it’s not enough. They likewise said locals shouldn’t have to question if their health care will be withdrawed depending upon who’s in power.
” We should have the very same certainty of access to healthcare as all of us have with access to public education or the expectation of public safety and emergency situation action,” Atkins stated in the hearing. “These are essential services to which Californians have access just due to the fact that they live here. The exact same should hold true with healthcare.”
Atkins ended with a difficulty to her associates: “Let’s do something huge.”
Lawmakers got an earful from fans and opponents. Associates for insurance service providers and health companies said the procedure would put them out of company.
Teresa Stark, director of state federal government relations for Kaiser Permanente, called the costs “divisive and detrimental” and stated it ” in fact might cause damage.”
The costs lost consciousness of the committee. It now heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee, which Lara chairs.
Water Agency Is OKAY With Lead Checking Expense, Just Not Its Price
A minimum of a half lots bills in the Legislature look for to discover and eliminate lead in drinking water, especially in school drinking water. State and federal legislators and regulators have actually worked for years to minimize the quantity of lead in paint, gas and water, however lead still sticks around in the plumbing and fixtures of aging buildings, consisting of schoolhouses throughout the state.
Water agencies in California oppose a few of these bills because the companies– instead of the schools– would pay for the tests. The water firms don’t believe that is their job. They are providing clean water. It’s not their fault, they argue, if the water ends up being poisonous once it touches old plumbing inside a house, office or school. It’s like selling a car. If the car is safe when you buy it, Ford does not wish to be accountable if you wreck it.
The San Diego County Water Authority voted today to oppose one bill, AB 885, because it would need water companies to spend for screening in schools. The Water Authority is likewise concerned about any expense that would make water-quality requirements stricter, something that AB 746 by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher would do. Her bill not just requires routine tests of schools however likewise makes far more stringent the amount of lead allowed the drinking water supply.
Here’s a summary the Water Authority prepared of other expenses:
— Ry Rivard
School Bond Watchdogs Urged to Call Out Misbehavior
More than 50 residents charged with managing school bond programs from across the state gathered in Sacramento Tuesday for the California League of Bond Oversight Committees yearly conference.
Nick Marinovich, a league director and chair of the Sweetwater Union High School District bond committee, urged guests to ask hard concerns and supply energetic oversight to meet their role mandated by state law since 2000, when California voters made it easier to pass local property taxes to spend for school construction projects.
Marinovich retraced the recent history of how Sweetwater went from “outright crap” with a pay-to-play contracting culture that ended in criminal convictions for several school leaders.to a “well-oiled maker today.”
” Bond oversight, well, it was an outright joke,” now, “we’ve got a better bond program since we have actually got strong oversight,” he stated.
On website trips, overseers have to look at the great and the bad, he stated. A Sweetwater high school that had received $60 million in bond work still did not have a/c in half of the classrooms, despite the fact that a/c was included in the bond step’s 75-word ballot summary put previously citizens.
” Call them out on that,” he stated. “We could all take a look at the grand opening of a beautiful library, which is fine to a point, however we wish to take a look at exactly what hasn’t been done.”
Much of Sweetwater’s Proposition O bond program has stalled after selling just $277 million out of the $644 million in bonds authorized due to the effect of the economic downturn on South Bay residential or commercial property values. The district is considering putting a brand-new bond prior to citizens in the coming years.
— Ashly McGlone
No, the State’s Not to Blame for San Diego Unified Woes
The San Diego Unified School District has actually attempted its hardest to spin its huge upcoming budget cuts as modifications that will help schools– and also a problem that’s mainly from its control.
School officials have repeatedly suggested that Sacramento is the factor it’s in a hard financial area.
Most just recently, a district press release indicated one stat it says makes its case: “California is presently ranked 46th in the nation on per student funding.”
Ashly McGlone vetted that stat and discovered that while it accurately represents numbers from the 2013-2014 school year, a lot has actually changed ever since.
” Not just did California voters extend specific personal income tax walkings that money education through 2030 by passing Prop. 55 in November, the state’s new formula for assigning money to schools– called the Regional Control Financing Formula– worked in 2013-14. …
So, while California might have ranked 46th three years ago, funding for schools increased drastically ever since, and that’s to say nothing about the billions of dollars in additional taxes authorized by means of local bond procedures for building jobs not factored into the equation.”
Golden State News
– A bill by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez that would disallow employers from firing workers who have an abortion or who deliver out of wedlock is, unsurprisingly, not popular with some religious employers. (L.A. Times).
– An explosive audit released this week discovered that University of California administrators hid $175 million “in a secret reserve fund even as the UC raised tuition and asked the state for more funding.” (KPCC).
– Politifact evaluated state Treasurer John Chiang’s claim that he’s conserved California more than $5 billion.
– President Donald Trump stated he is thinking about breaking up the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which covers California and other western states. (CNN).
This article associates with: Federal government, Should Reads, Sacramento Report, State Federal government.
Composed by Sara Libby.
Sara Libby is VOSD’s managing editor. She supervises VOSD’s newsroom and its material. You can reach her at email@example.com or 619.325.0526.