Connecting state and local government leaders

How an ‘Old Retread’ Like Jerry Brown Has Triumphed Over Chris Christie

Gov. Jerry Brown, center, flanked by lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, speaks of the passage of a pair of climate change measures on Monday in Sacramento, Calif.

Gov. Jerry Brown, center, flanked by lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, speaks of the passage of a pair of climate change measures on Monday in Sacramento, Calif. Rich Pedroncelli / AP Photo


Connecting state and local government leaders

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP: New York prepares to sue feds over possible health care action; Iowa speed-camera lawsuits; and a Florida community is recovering from sinkhole that swallowed two homes.

GOVERNORS | New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is the nation’s most unpopular governor, followed by Sam Brownback of Kansas and Dannel Malloy of Connecticut, according to new Morning Consult rankings of approval ratings for state governors, based on interviews with more than 195,000 registered voters across the U.S. from April 1 through July 10. Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan are the most popular governors. [Morning Consult]

California Gov. Jerry Brown is celebrating what he has said is the most important vote of his career in government. On Monday, the California Legislature approved a bipartisan deal that would extend the state’s one-of-a-kind cap-and-trade program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 2030. "Republicans and Democrats set aside their differences, came together and took courageous action,” Brown said in a statement. “That’s what good government looks like." And it shouldn’t be overlooked where Brown’s stature currently stands in his state compared to many of his Republican critics who previously “cast themselves as foils to [Brown], using his famously liberal state as a piñata to elevate their profiles and emphasize the superiority of conservative political philosophy.” That includes the nation’s most unpopular governor, Chris Christie, who once portrayed the septuagenarian Brown as an “old retread” ill equipped to manage a fiscally troubled state. Look where those two now stand. [Los Angeles Times; Capitol Alert / The Sacramento Bee]

HEALTH CARE | New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio vowed to sue the federal government if the U.S. Senate repeals the Affordable Care Act—in a rare joint appearance by the governor and mayor. “If this Senate bill passes, people will die. Americans will die. New Yorkers will die,” de Blasio said. “Let's now act like our lives depend on it, because they do. Let's fight it and let's beat it.” [New York Daily News]

CIVIC DISCOURSE |Republicans that are supporting Trump, they should have no place on city council whatsoever or in the mayor’s race,” said Dimple Ajmera, Charlotte, North Carolina City Council member, during a local television interview. Now she faces a backlash from the Mecklenburg Republican Party, though she’s shown no signs of backing down after criticizing the president’s “divisiveness.” [The Charlotte Observer]


Spokane, Washington (Shutterstock)
  • Spokane, Washington: City Council members added a 2010 sustainability action plan to the municipal code in a 6-1 vote that also acknowledged climate change is at least in part caused by human activities. Language mentioning the Paris Agreement that President Trump recently withdrew from, and how many U.S. cities and states have since rushed to join, was dropped. “This isn’t just about lagging Seattle and Portland. Even Boise and Bozeman have joined the Climate Mayors,” said one resident. “I believe this is the greatest moral imperative of our time.” [The Spokesman-Review]
  • Cedar Rapids, Iowa: The Iowa Supreme Court’s chief justice granted further review for two lawsuits challenging automated speed enforcement cameras the city of Cedar Rapids set up along Interstate 380. [The Gazette]
  • Lansing, Michigan: State government agencies in Michigan have blocked or muted nearly 800 Twitter accounts, according to a Freedom of Information Act request, which raises questions about whether such social media action violate the First Amendment.  [Lansing State Journal; The Detroit News]
  • Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: A proposed state constitutional amendment could reshape the duties of the Keystone State’s lieutenant governor, a position that comes with a high salary and a short list of statutory and constitutional duties. [PennLive]  
  • Land O’Lakes, Florida: Five homes in the Lake Padgett Estates subdivision remain vacant and without power after a sinkhole swallowed up two homes. Although the sinkhole appears to have stabilized, water safety tests continue. Area residents have been urged to drink bottled water. [Tampa Bay Times]