SANTA BARBARA, Ca. -- Let's review. Just a few years ago California was a punching bag for conservative scolds -- a failed state, profligate with its spending and promiscuous with its ambition. Ungovernable. And everybody's leaving.
Mitt Romney compared California to bankrupt Greece. Texas Governor Rick Perry said it was anti-business. (Howdy, Google and Facebook, say hello to Amarillo.) And Fox News, well, take the above and add a series of bluster blasts that will not withstand fact checking.
Now some recent headlines: "California Projects $4.6 Billion Surplus." "California Among the National Leaders in Job Creation." And "San Francisco Wins Super Bowl." O.K., I threw in the last one as a dig at the Niners, but you get the point.
More than a thousand people marched through the streets of the capital of captured Mexican drug lord Joaquin "Shorty" Guzman's home state on Wednesday, calling for his freedom. The largely young crowd, many dressed in white, bore signs that read "We want Shorty Freed" and "We demand no extradition" as they filed across the center of Culiacan, in the northwestern state of Sinaloa, to a church on a palm tree-lined plaza. Boys donned white t-shirts scrawled with messages written in marker pen in support for "El Chapo," his nickname in Spanish. Teenage girls in school uniform chanted "Chapo, Chapo."
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexico's government scored a huge victory with the capture of the country's most wanted drug lord but the cartels will remain a powerful force and could unleash a fresh wave of violence as they fight for control of his turf.
In a lightning raid early on Saturday, Mexican marines arrested Joaquin Guzman, whose dominance of the drugs trade and ability to elude the law since escaping from prison in 2001 had lent him almost mythical status.
Immortalized in songs and revered by many in his home state of Sinaloa, Guzman leaves behind a criminal organization that employs thousands and flourished even as it fought brutal turf wars with rival cartels.
President Barack Obama said Friday that top priorities for Congress should be increasing the minimum wage and overhauling the immigration system, while acknowledging that election year politics could complicate the effort. The president and vice president called for sweeping changes to immigration laws, but Republican leaders have all but ruled out passage before the midterm election. Obama urged the Democratic crowd to keep working for it and insisted some Republicans want a deal. "But they're worried, and they're scared about the political blowback. And look, everybody here is an elected official and we can all appreciate the maneuverings that take place, particularly in an election year," Obama said.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A federal appeals court on Thursday struck down a requirement by San Diego County that residents show "good cause" to carry a concealed firearm, a ruling that could force local governments across California to revisit the way they license handguns.
A three-member panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, acting on a 2009 lawsuit, ruled in a 2-1 decision that San Diego County's restrictions amounted to an unconstitutional infringement on citizens' Second Amendment rights to bear arms.
Coupled with a California state law that largely bans the open carrying of firearms in public, San Diego County's "good cause" rules on concealed weapons effectively bar residents from carrying a gun altogether, the panel said.