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Article on sports
superiority slights A’s

The front page of the Jan. 30 East Bay Times featured the article (“Collision course for sporting superiority“) and a large illustration about Northern California sports versus Southern California sports for superiority.

There were the Giants, the Warriors and the 49ers pictured.

Last I looked the Oakland A’s were still in Oakland with local fans and elected officials fighting to keep them here. How can the artist not put them in the photo? An oversight?

Only five teams in the Bay Area and the team struggling to stay here was missed. Truly abysmal.

John Mooney
Walnut Creek

California can’t manage
single-payer health care

Recently there have been calls for California to eliminate insurance companies and create a state-run health care system. When you look at other large projects California tries to manage it is inappropriate to even consider letting the state mess with health care.

The EDD gave $20 billion to convicts and others not eligible; the bullet train (to nowhere); the list goes on.

Initial projections for California to take over health care are as much as $356 billion much more than the entire state’s $286 billion budget. Are you ready for your California taxes to go up?

The health care system is terribly broken, but California is completely inept at managing any large project. We cannot afford to let them try managing health care.

Chris Wood

Out of majority, GOP
now likes moderates

I am writing in response to the recent comments by Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and others calling for President Joe Biden to nominate a “moderate” candidate they can support for the Supreme Court vacancy caused by the pending retirement of Justice Stephen Breyer and the hypocrisy of her comments.

For the past three nominations the Republicans have chosen conservative nominees and pushed them through on party-line votes, bipartisanship be damned. Now that the Democrats have an opening the Republicans all of a sudden want a “moderate”? All of the Republican nominees to the Court have ties to the conservative “Federalist Society,” hardly moderates by any reasoning.

Bipartisanship means working for consensus when you are the majority, not just when you are out of power and opposing the other party’s actions.

Roger Wood

U.S. should tread lightly
on Russia sanctions

I write as a volunteer for the nonprofit East Bay Peace Action, in order to address the escalating conflict between Russia and Ukraine, and the United States’ unfortunate and inevitable involvement.

It is important to note that U.S.-led sanctions imposed on Russia would be a poor decision. Sanctions typically do little to deter choices made by nations and only impact citizens who have little say in potential or ongoing conflicts, not to mention the ill will it imparts on the leaders whose nation receives said sanctions.

Yet, if unavoidable and despite the ill will, use of sanctions is still best limited to freezing assets of leaders offshore accounts, etc. to avoid impacting citizens.

Darby Pitts

Only voter IDs will
ensure election integrity

To ensure that we have voting integrity for all elections, local, state and federal, it is critical that we require a government-issued ID to vote.

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If we must have a license to drive a car, a government-issued ID to board an airplane, and a vaccine card and ID to enter a restaurant, sporting event or concert, then there should be no reason not to require an ID to vote.

A requirement to provide an ID to vote will not limit any legal citizen the ability to vote. Now, more than ever, it is time to let the winds of freedom and integrity blow again.

David Ott

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National Politics | Biden urges Dems to scrap caucuses, promote diversity

By Zeke Miller | Associated Press

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden said Thursday that Democrats should give up “restrictive” caucuses and move to champion diversity in the order of their presidential primary calendar, dealing a major blow to Iowa’s decadeslong status as the first voting state.

In a letter to the rule-making arm of the Democratic National Committee, Biden does not mention specific states he’d like to see go first. But he has told Democrats he would like to see South Carolina moved to the front of the calendar, according to three people familiar with his recommendation who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.

He recommends that Michigan and Georgia move into the first five states, replacing Iowa, according to two of those people.

The letter comes as the DNC rules committee gathers in Washington on Friday to consider shaking up the presidential primary calendar starting in 2024. If the rule-making committee follows the president’s recommendations, as is widely expected, that would be a major shakeup to a primary calendar, which had led off with Iowa’s caucuses, followed by New Hampshire holding the first-in-the-nation primary.

“For decades, Black voters in particular have been the backbone of the Democratic Party but have been pushed to the back of the early primary process,” the president wrote in a letter on personal stationery that did not carry the White House seal. “We rely on these voters in elections but have not recognized their importance in our nominating calendar. It is time to stop taking these voters for granted, and time to give them a louder and earlier voice in the process.”

He added, “Our party should no longer allow caucuses as part of our nominating process.”

This means Iowa is likely close to losing a position it has held for more than four decades after technical meltdowns marred results of the 2020 caucuses. There has also been a larger party push to let a more diverse state go first.

South Carolina holds special relevance to Biden: His victory in the state’s first-in-the-South primary in 2020 kickstarted his presidential campaign on his way to winning the Democratic nomination.

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Word of Biden’s guidance sparked anger in New Hampshire, where state law calls for it to hold the nation’s first primary.

New Hampshire Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen issued a statement blasting “the White House’s short-sighted decision.” Fellow New Hampshire Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan said in a statement, “I strongly oppose the President’s deeply misguided proposal, but make no mistake, New Hampshire’s law is clear and our primary will continue to be First in the Nation.”

Kinnard reported from Columbia, S.C. Associated Press writer Steve Peoples in New York contributed to this report.

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