California fights back."
The board urges cautious determination to push back the excesses of the Trump regime.
California needs to be clear-eyed about the challenges it faces and strategic about how it responds. An all-out war with the federal government is neither sustainable nor wise. The state will have to choose its battles.
For starters, California should continue to pursue its agenda on human and civil rights, on clean air, water and climate change, and on equality. Trump can dismantle the federal Clean Power Plan, but he can’t stop the state from moving toward its renewable energy goal of 50% by 2030 as laid out in SB 350 two years ago. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency can reduce national fuel efficiency standards, but if it seeks to revoke California’s waiver that lets the state set its own, tougher rules, state lawmakers should fight back, including taking the agency to court if necessary. Trump can continue his counterproductive and mean-spirited efforts to deport non-criminal immigrants living in the country illegally, but the state’s local law enforcement agencies are not legally required to do the feds’ job for them; they should not.
Many Californians are extremely — and rationally — pessimistic about the next few years under President Trump. But here’s another hard truth: If and when there are opportunities for reasonable collaboration with the new administration, the state must be prepared to take them. California relies on the federal government for $105 billion in aid each year, money it badly needs. [The state sends $350 billion a year to Washington.] Total noncooperation is not an option. Besides, Sacramento and Washington, D.C., have certain mutual interests: If the president wants shovel-ready infrastructure projects to fund, we have plenty.
In the days ahead, we Californians must stand up to protect our nation and defend our state. We must read, write and protest. Attend meetings and speak out honestly to those in power. We must vote. Not just for president, but for school board as well. Stand up for the rule of law and the democratic process while also opposing the dangerous policies of America’s new leader.
For the next four years, we must cooperate when it is possible, but fight back when it is necessary in the interests of our state and the union to which it belongs.