Steve Cooley tells California's other DA's to take their three strikes and shove it, Ken Starr helps out some amici, and Rocky Delgadillo loses another round in the media. But it's not all about titled lawyers around here—click on the Buzz for a morning dose of Los Angeles news.
♦ He protests: DA Steve Cooley told the Daily Journal (no link) that he will resign from the California District Attorneys Association over its retaliation against his call to tone down the Three Strikes law a little bit. He's a law-and-order Republican, but it sounds like a litmus test for the other DA's:
Cooley has been on rocky ground with many of his fellow district attorneys across the state since he proposed a ballot initiative that would limit a third strike, which carries a 25-years-to-life sentence, largely to violent or serious crimes. The association's board refused to back Cooley's initiative during its winter meeting in Palm Springs. Afterward, members suggested he not participate in board meetings when the three-strikes issue was raised, even though he was the secretary and treasurer of the board, Cooley said. He said some members later suggested he step down from the board completely.
♦ Also in the Daily Journal: Pepperdine Law dean Kenneth Starr has signed on as a friend-of-the-court on behalf of four opponents of same-sex marriage in California: The Church of Jesus Christ and Latter Day Saints, the California Catholic Conference, the National Association of Evangelicals and the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations.
♦ Rocky goes 0 for 3:
The Daily News
and LA Weekly
join the Times in not endorsing the hometown hopeful, City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo, for state attorney general. The Weekly's Jeffrey Anderson also lands with a profile
that delves into the Ann D'Amato question and asks of Delgadillo:
Is he a well-meaning cornball, one who exploits his name? Or is he — as a recent news story suggests — a shameless phony, a guy who fudges his résumé? Or is he a talented, hard-working guy who is not afraid to do the difficult things that might piss people off? If it’s the last, then how does such an inspiring figure, with a folkloric political rise and obvious personal charm, become so misunderstood?...[DA Steve Cooley] says, "says, "I can’t say I know him. There’s some disengagement. He talks about abortion and the environment, that’s predictable. Set up a camera and he’ll be there. But he hasn’t impressed people that he has all the [skills] needed to be state attorney general. It’s not that he’s a Johnny-come-lately, more like a Johnny-come-early."...
So, how much influence does D’Amato have? And is it a good thing? Lauded as a keen choice to be Delgadillo’s chief of staff in 2001, D’Amato, a City Hall veteran of more than 30 years who collects a full pension on top of a six-figure city contract salary, has been the older woman behind the promising young man, causing observers to wonder about some sort of “Mommy” complex. Some former employees say that perception is ludicrous. But many concede she is briefed on most, if not all, major decisions, and weighs in on legal matters despite having no legal experience. There also is a perception that she is overzealous in promoting Delgadillo, which may be confused with her own drive to be a political player, and that she lacks judgment and respect for the boundaries between politics and running a city office.
♦ Only seems like everybody watches:
The 31.8 million people
who saw the next-to-last "American Idol" show is big by today's TV standards, but don't get carried away. Most people staring at the tube watched something else. That's fewer Americans than watch the Super Bowl or even the Oscars, and nothing like TV events of the past like the finale of "M*A*S*H" (50 million households
) or the "Who Shot J.R." episode of "Dallas" (41 million households.)
The Monday deadline marked the end of a 13-year saga to defend the farm, where more than 300 mostly Latino immigrant families have cultivated ancient crops and ancient traditions....Nasty infighting and an ideological rigidity within the farm leadership led to the farm’s gradual shedding of friends in high places — mainly, politicians and nonprofit funders. As of Monday, Trust for Public Land L.A. area director Bob Reid said about $6 million had been raised. At earlier points in the option-to-buy period, officials reported as much as $11 million raised to buy the land. Why the drop? Deputy Mayor Larry Frank, who headed the city’s fund-raising efforts, declined to explain.
The Daily News blames
incomplete information from Mayor Villaraigosa's office for saying that his travel budget of $200,000 is ten times higher than what Jim Hahn spent his final year. It's actually six times higher.
♦ You can take the suburbs out of the girl:
Belinda Carlisle of the Go-Gos may have grown up in Thousand Oaks, but she has acquired jet-set tastes. After living in the south of France for fourteen years, she tells the LAT
her favorite home visits begin at the Beverly Hills Hotel and Beverly Hot Springs, then include golf at the Bel Air Country Club, shoe shopping at Neiman Marcus and drinks at the Polo Lounge.
♦ Beach party:
Two hours before the Santa Monica City Council takes up the future of the old Marion Davies estate at 415 Pacific Coast Highway, supporters of making it a public beach club
will hold a beach-themed rally outside the city hall.
♦ Book party:
The LA Weekly will fete
new books by its writers Ben Ehrenreich (The Suitors
), Ernest Hardy (BloodBeats
) and Steven Kotler (West of Jesus
) from 6 pm to 8 pm at Boardner's in Hollywood.
♦ Blue-colored glasses:
You know everything is going right
for the Dodgers when even Aaron Sele (3-0, 1.69 ERA) has good stats.