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California Gov. Jerry Brown continued his bid to make California the unofficial capital of Reality-Based America with his State of the State Address Tuesday, delivering a fiery speech that stopped a little short of declaring an open state of hostilities with That Man In The White House (the real speech starts at about the 20 minute point in the video above). It was pretty much a continuation of his December speech vowing to resist any federal efforts to cut funding for researching and fighting climate change. Brown made it abundantly clear he's not going to let California go down the drain of Trumpism. For one thing, he'd object to wasting that water.


Brown started by reminding the state Assembly that California has, on its own, the world's sixth-largest economy and that "One out of every eight Americans lives right here and 27 percent -- almost eleven million -- were born in a foreign land." That diversity and openness to immigration, he said, help make the state "what it is today: vibrant, even turbulent, and a beacon of hope to the rest of the world.”

Then Brown turned toward national themes:

“This morning, it’s hard for me to keep my thoughts just on California,” Brown said. “We’ve seen the bald assertion of ‘alternative facts,’ whatever those are. We’ve heard the blatant attacks on science. Familiar signposts of our democracy -- truth, civility, working together -- have been obscured or even swept aside.”

But Brown was encouraged by the day of record-setting protests that followed Donald Trump's inauguration:

[In] cities across the country, we also witnessed a vast and inspiring fervor that is stirring in the land. Democracy doesn’t come from the top; it starts and spreads in the hearts of the people. And in the hearts of Americans, our core principles are as strong as ever.

In a nice turn on the overused "American Exceptionalism," Brown praised the state's commitment to "the basic principles that have made California the Great Exception that it is." (Turns out that "Great Exception" is a thing; it comes from the title of a 1949 book about the state).

Brown anticipated President Trump's expected action to defund "sanctuary cities," saying that while he recognized federal supremacy in setting and enforcing immigration law, the state isn't about to abandon the measures it's passed to protect undocumented immigrants, so get ready for some lawsuits:

We may be called upon to defend those laws and defend them we will. And let me be clear: We will defend everybody – every man, woman and child – who has come here for a better life and has contributed to the well-being of our state.

Brown also pledged to fight repeal of the Affordable Care Act, noting that over five million Californians now have coverage who didn't before the ACA, and promised to join other governors in protecting health care. He also repeated his commitment to renewable energy and fighting climate change, and to support a plan to cut California's greenhouse gas emissions to 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030, which would put the state well ahead of national goals Barack Obama had agreed to before Trump took office. Politico notes that during confirmation hearings last week, Trump's designee to head the EPA, Scott Pruitt, wouldn't rule out the possibility that "the administration could seek to undermine California’s vehicle emission standards, a central piece of the state’s environmental agenda." You know, because it's bad for America if one state has cleaner air.

“Whatever they do in Washington, they can’t change the facts,” Brown said. “And these are the facts: The climate is changing, the temperatures are rising, and so are the oceans. Natural habitats everywhere are under stress.”

Brown said “the world knows this” and that states and other countries can work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions regardless of federal policy.

Now, if Trump wants to help pay for infrastructure, Brown wouldn't say no. A state that generates as much tax revenue for the country can certainly argue it should get a good chunk of it back.

One thing Brown may not want to be too public about, unless he really wants to get into a fight with Trump: In the most recent polling, done back in September, Brown's approval rating was at 60 percent, and we'd be willing to bet it will be even higher thanks to his taking on Trump. Brown can feel good about that without rubbing Trump's face in it, we suppose.

[Politico / LAT / Sacramento Bee / Mercury News]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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Martha McSally is worried. Everything was coming up Martha when Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey picked her to fill the late John McCain's Senate seat. But now the junior senator has to hold that seat in 2020, and actual elections are where she has her troubles. Kyrsten Sinema, she of the fierce wardrobe, defeated McSally last year when they were running against each other for Jeff Flake's old seat. Arizona hadn't elected a Democratic senator since 1988.

McSally's likely challenger next year is Mark Kelly, who's a goddamn astronaut. We appreciate her service as an Air Force pilot but really, Kelly's been in space, where the Klingons are. Kelly's identical twin is also an astronaut. McSally has four siblings and none of them are astronauts or even her twin. She can't win this.

Besides, this is Kelly's campaign announcement video. When his awesome wife, Gabby Giffords, shows up, we just lose it. Why are we even bothering with an election?

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FINALLY. Of course, we say "finally," because we haven't been behind the scenes in the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees to witness the negotiating and wrangling firsthand, so we don't know what it's taken to make this happen, but clear your calendars for July 17, because Bobby Mueller is goin' to Congress!

Committee chairs Adam Schiff and Jerry Nadler sent the letter late yesterday, accompanied by a subpoena, for Mueller to testify at 9 a.m. Eastern on July 17, which is a Wednesday, so you will presumably not be busy with brunch. The hearings for each committee will be back to back, after which members of Mueller's staff will meet with committee staff behind closed doors.

Schiff told Rachel Maddow last night that it should not be viewed as a friendly subpoena, because as we all know, Mueller has been very reluctant to become the star of the political circus this will surely create. However, he's gonna have to suck it up, because as we all saw after what happened when Mueller addressed the nation for 10 whole minutes, there is great value in actually having Mueller breathe life into his own work, for an American audience that hasn't read his 448-page report. (And we don't blame them/you! We probably wouldn't have read it all if it wasn't our job. It would probably be on our "list," like "someday I am going to watch 'The Sopranos' start to finish finally. And then I will read the Mueller Report!")

Point is, it needs to happen on live TV, where people can gather around at work and on the train and in the Fantastic Sams while they gets their hair did, and let this highly respected public servant tell the story of how America's most hostile enemy attacked the 2016 election in order to help Donald Trump, how the Trump campaign was positively orgasmic over that reacharound, and how Trump criminally obstructed the investigation into that hostile foreign attack at every turn.

And because Robert Mueller is a patriotic American who respects the rule of law and our institutions, he will be complying with the subpoena, because of fucking course he will.

Right off the bat, we have a couple of questions:

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