Government & Politics

News about government and politics

Ezra David Romero
Valley Public Radio

Understanding the information on a voting ballot can be tough even for English speakers. For many second language learners the voting process can be so intimidating that they don’t vote, in part because of the lack of materials in their own language.

Now a group of Punjabi people in Fresno want to change that experience.

Almost every afternoon older Indian-American men from the province of Punjab gather under the shade and play cards in Victoria West Community Park in West Fresno. Deep Singh says it’s a chance to get out of the house.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

Finding enough money to pay for child care is a struggle for many Central Valley families. But last year despite the region’s high poverty rate, Fresno County returned $10 million in unspent money to the state that was earmarked for child care for low-income families.

whitehouse.gov

It's hard to imagine two Republican leaders with more dramatically different political styles than Bakersfield's Kevin McCarthy and Donald Trump. While McCarthy rose to his position as House Majority Leader thanks to a warm and affable public personality, Trump's style has been anything but. Yet the two have a remarkably close working relationship.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

Nearly 1,000 people in the Central Valley are now officially new U.S. citizens. And for many, they say the recent Presidential election played a big role.

975 people from 57 countries took the oath of citizenship at the Fresno Convention Center Tuesday, the final step in their process of moving from immigrant to citizen.

Among them was 35-year old Norma Minjares, who was brought to the country by his parents as an infant.  

She, like many in the crowd, say last fall’s election pushed her to finally seek citizenship.

Andrew Janz for Congress

The 2018 mid-term election is a year-and-a-half away, but Republican Congressman Devin Nunes has already drawn a challenger in the race for the 22nd Congressional District, Democrat Andrew Janz. The political newcomer and current Fresno County Deputy District Attorney faces a tough challenge. Republicans have a double-digit voter registration edge in the district, and Nunes has easily defeated Democratic opponents in each of the last three election cycles.

Journalist Javier Valdez Shot To Death In Mexico

May 16, 2017

Javier Valdez was driving in broad daylight down a street he must have known well, just a block from his office, when he became the latest victim of a wave of journalist killings that has hit Mexico.

Masked gunmen forced Valdez from his red Toyota Camry, shot him dead and left his body in the middle of the street Monday, said Riodoce, the publication he helped start.

The car was found later in the afternoon on a sidewalk next to an elementary school, wedged between a utility pole and a wall with the motor still running and the gears engaged.

Journalist Javier Valdez Shot To Death In Mexico

May 16, 2017

Javier Valdez was driving in broad daylight down a street he must have known well, just a block from his office, when he became the latest victim of a wave of journalist killings that has hit Mexico.

Masked gunmen forced Valdez from his red Toyota Camry, shot him dead and left his body in the middle of the street Monday, said Riodoce, the publication he helped start.

The car was found later in the afternoon on a sidewalk next to an elementary school, wedged between a utility pole and a wall with the motor still running and the gears engaged.

Mayor Kevin Faulconer announced Tuesday that extra money in the fiscal year that begins July 1 will go toward addressing a police officer retention problem and supporting arts organizations -- the most controversial issues in his $3.6 billion budget proposal.

Google Maps

Tensions between the United States and North Korea have heightened in recent weeks. Hanford Republican Congressman David Valadao recently returned from a trip to South Korea and Japan. He spoke with Valley Public Radio about his trip and what he learned.

Interview transcript highlights:

Q: Why did you make the trip to South Korea?

In the remote Southern California desert, the US Army is testing whether it can put some its most advanced cyber tools into the hands of commanders in the field. The pilot project started in August and will wrap up in the next few weeks at Fort Irwin.

Kaiser Family Foundation

California’s Republican congressmen were crucial to getting the American Health Care Act passed through the U.S. House of Representatives last week. One change to that bill was key in getting the support of at least one of those congressman: additional money for something known as ‘high-risk pools’.

However, they are not a new idea in health care and in fact have been tried before right here in the Golden State. California’s experience could help inform how the policy might work if it becomes law, and the challenges it could face.

Office of Rep. David Valadao / Valley Public Radio

Republicans in Washington are once again pushing hard for a vote on the American Health Care Act as some moderate members say they will now vote ‘yes’ on the bill. One remaining holdout, however, is Central Valley Congressman David Valadao. 

He spoke with Valley Public Radio on Wednesday about his position on the bill.

Republican representative Valadao says he’s still on the fence over whether to support or oppose the Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act.

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood took his argument that the county should declare itself as a non-sanctuary county to the Board of Supervisors today.

The move came despite a failed effort last week by the Sheriff to place it on Tuesday’s agenda. His request was rejected by the county’s attorney for legal and procedural reasons.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

Religion and politics are once again mixing at Fresno City Hall. One councilmember has put forward a plan to add the words ‘In God We Trust’ to the council chamber wall. The result of that vote could be the latest sign that the connection between politics and the city’s religious faithful is still strong.

The Wilson Theater in downtown Fresno comes to life on Sundays when it transforms into the Christian Cornerstone Church, the home of Pastor Jim Franklin. The theme of the sermon this weekend is organizing your life to put Jesus first.

Fresno State Facebook page

There’s a new set of public opinion polls out on the views of San Joaquin Valley residents on a variety of issues, from the effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act to water and immigration.

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