President Trump, California, Orange County discussed on KQED Newsroom
Offense. In the final days before voters head to the polls. President Trump has made a number of immigration pronouncements in an effort to appeal to his base. They include a proposed end to birthright citizenship in this country. And he once again targeted the caravan of Central American migrants suggesting that federal agents can fire them if they toss objects all of this significant implications for California home to about one quarter of the nation's foreign born population. Meanwhile, loopholes she'll proposition six the repeal of the state gas tax is trilling among voters. The same is true for proposition ten which would give cities the ability to expand rent control as part of our ongoing election coverage, I'm joined now in studio by our own cake, California, politics and government team senior editor Scott Shafer. Reporter Marie Salah goes and reporter and producer guy. Marzorati always good to see you guys. Scott Democrats are hoping as you know, to flip those seven GOP in California that they've been trying to target in their quest. Win twenty three seats to retake control of the house. So how is the current messaging from President Trump in the White House on immigration affecting those key races? And does it vary depending on whether it's a central valley race or an Orange County race? There's so many cross-currents happening right now, you mentioned the birthright thing with immigrants the caravan and just a week ago. There was the shooting in Pittsburgh at the synagogue in the pipe bomber. So there's so many different things happening. It's hard to isolate one thing and say, what impact is it having that said, I mean, we are showing a lot of voter interest. The secretary of state today came out with final registration numbers for California. And seventy eight percent of eligible voters are registered hasn't been that high for a non presidential election since one thousand nine hundred fifty so there's a lot of interest. How it's playing out. I think Democrats have been very focused on not getting distracted by Trump and trying to stay on their message. Healthcare, the Republican tax Bill jobs that kind of thing. So I think if Trump succeeds yo he will up the the turnout among Republicans, but Democrats are already mobilized one. I think it's telling that as Trump is going around the country to some of these key states. He's not coming to California. And I think that might be partly for his own reasons. But also, I don't think in every district is a good idea to be seeing next to the president. Right. If you're in even a central valley district that is pretty conservative, but with a huge Latino population, those immigration messages are not gonna play very well, Orange County is diversifying. It's a mix of people. And so I think that for Republicans in California, there's been this kind of tight rope to walk this entire campaign where they want to appeal and sort of ally themselves with the president in some ways, but in this harsh immigration rhetoric. It may not play as well in California. Did you want to say something? Going to say, I mean, I think certainly you can see by how the president is moving in these final days of the campaign. He's really focused on Senate races. That's where he's spending his time. As I mentioned, he's not coming to California. He's really not spending time in those suburban districts that I think will decide the balance of power in the house, and I would say for Democrats, they're singularly focused on healthcare. But I think there is a big difference. When you go to the place like an Orange County where they're behind the registration and really needs to sell a centrist message to somewhere like the central valley where they have a registration advantage at this point. It's really about turn out and speaking to the speaking of the central valley that is particularly interesting race there. This may come as a surprise to some people but the nation's most expensive congressional race. So far this year this year because the election days on Tuesday is here in a solidly blue states in the central valley. That's the incumbent Devon Nunez. He's the Republican Republican sheriff the house intelligence committee. He's also emerged as the chief defender of President Trump. He is the incumbent incumbent. His democratic challenger is a Fresno prosecu-. Peter Andrew chance. So how much money is being spent on this one race? And why is it so expensive? Well, it's sort of ironic because this is actually the least likely to flip of a lot of these districts, right? It's not actually one that. I think Democrats saw long ago as an opportunity, but what's happened is that Nunez has really upped his fundraising game. I mean a couple of years ago, he raised maybe a million dollars didn't really have an opponent. He's raised more than eleven million dollars. And most of that is not even not from US District. It's not in California. It's on the DC circuit. We're talking lobbyists. We're talking you know, sort of big conservative donors on the other side Andrew Janet prosecutor. I think has excited Democrats. I think it's an uphill battle. But he's raised eight million dollars himself. And so what's happened is we've seen I think a conversation happening in the central valley, even with the sort of registration favorability to Nunez that we haven't seen in the Fresno bee, for example has been in this war with him. They for the first time in years deny endorse Nunez. But I think it's one of those seats Democrats would love to flip. They probably know it's kind of a reach to say, the least personal it's personal. I was up in sonoma's. I saw Andrew Jan signs on somebody. I think so. Yeah, I think it says a lot of the money that alluded to is coming from the bay area because you know, the central valley is not a wealthy area. There's not a big bunch of big donors are wealthy people. It's a very poor area. So yeah, I think there's just a lot of excitement. It's one of those seats that where they'd like to flip if they could Democrats, but they know what to reach Nunez has been reelected seven times. And he has actually been endorsed by the Fresno bee every time until now as Marie said, there's a war going on as sort of like an echo of what Trump says about the media, and he's focused at all. I had a forty page mail or he put together all mocha's on the Fresno bee and guy in in these congressional races in places like central valley are voters more focused on local issues or are they more concerned about what's coming out of the White House. It's always the national issues. I think you see this every midterm election. It ultimately is a reflection in a referendum on the president. And what's happening in Washington as much as Republicans have tried to make this about local issues. I mean, they know how unpopular Donald? Trump is in many swing districts in California. They want to talk about the gas tax. They wanna talk about things happening. You know at the DMV and more local issues. It really isn't. I mean, I think people Trump is on everyone's mind on on the minute voters. And so I think for Democrats they succeed when they turn the conversation back to the president and back to issues like healthcare where Democrats have much more of an advantage. I mean, let's talk about some of the propositions as well because we have two very high profile ballot propositions and one of them is proposition. Six the gas tax repeal and a new poll out this week from UC Berkeley institute of governmental study shows that it's trailing. It's fifty six percent of likely voters are opposed. So Scott getting rid of this gas tax was supposed to be a rallying cry for the GOP. What happened? In some ways the biggest impact of this happened a while ago in June when Josh Neumann the freshman Senator from Fullerton, Orange County voted for the gas tax was the target of a repeal of a recall, and he was recalled and that took away the two thirds majority of Republicans had in the Senate. But since then it's really petered out. John Cox is put in a bunch of money to get it on the ballot. But really, the money's dried up, and is a huge amount of money on the other side because you've got labor you've got the chamber of commerce. You've got contractors local officials of all really teamed up to say, we don't want to have this transportation money taken away. I mean, that's made this campaign. So interesting to me before this measure qualified for the ballot three point eight million dollars spent by supporters after that one point five million. So it's almost as if the campaign is just petered off. They wanted to get it on the ballot. Not only for turnout, but to give Republican candidates something else to talk about other than just quickly. I think it was worried that a Republican wouldn't be in the top two of the governor's race. Now, there is once a lot of that money was Mimi Walters. Who's now a congresswoman who's in a very tight race with her democrat. Challenger? She's not going to be putting the money behind a gas tax repeal that she was six or ten months ago. Okay. Let's talk about prop tennis as well. That's the measure that would allow cities to expand rent control. And a whopping sixty percent of the voter survey said no I mean, and then a different poll by the public policy institute of California said even renters are we checking this measure, why is that? I mean, it's even more fascinating. When recent polling showed that people support the idea of rent control, but do not support proposition. Ten I think that you get to the spending and the messaging in this campaign number one. The no side has been three times more than the yes side. I think that plays a huge role when you talk about advertisements getting the message out there, and the actual ballot language itself is kind of confusing. It's talking about repeal and not expansion of rent control. I think some people might say wait, a my voting to repeal rent control, all of those things that all those factors have added into the fact that every poll we're seeing it's not doing well. Okay. And real quickly. I want to touch on props. Sees a local measure here in San Francisco, but lots of national attention because Salesforce seal. Mark money off supports it. Twitter's SEO Jack Dorsey opposes opposes it. You've got this battle the tech titans going on where will all of this end up south homelessness. Yeah. This is a tax these very big companies to pay for homeless services. It looks like it will probably get more than fifty percent and win. The question is will be challenged in court. And I think the faultlines has opened up among the tech community. But also among Democrats Nancy Pelosi Dianne Feinstein or for it. Mayor Linden breed is against it. It's an interesting battle and one that will not end next Tuesday. All right. You guys have been busy, and you're going to continue to be busy. Recent logos. Scott, Shafer and guy marzorati, you will all be covering it. I know, and we will see all of you back here next week for a full roundup of the election outcomes and their impacts in California. Thank you very much. And just a reminder this coming Tuesday. Join us on the radio and online for full election day.