This is a sampling from Bay Area News Group's Political Blotter blog. Read more and post comments at www.ibabuzz.com/politics.
Add Rep. Jerry McNerney to the list of Democratic elected officials who won't attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., this September even as they try to retain their seats.
But it seems he has a pretty solid reason.
"The Congressman won't be attending the convention, as it conflicts with his son's wedding," spokeswoman Lauren Smith said today.
McNerney, D-Stockton, is being challenged in the newly drawn 9th Congressional District by Ricky Gill, a recent law school graduate from Lodi, whom the National Republican Congressional Committee named one of its Young Guns -- a well-funded, well-organized up-and-comer taking on a vulnerable incumbent.
But Gill spokesman Colin Hunter said Gill hasn't yet decided whether he'll attend the Republican National Convention in Tampa this August; he declined to comment on McNerney skipping Charlotte.
Various national media outlets have been building a list of Democrats avoiding the Charlotte convention, often from districts where President Obama's approval ratings are low. Likewise, some Republicans who might benefit from distancing themselves from the GOP are avoiding Tampa.
It's unclear whether Rep. John Garamendi, D-Walnut Grove, will go to
"A decision has not been made yet," Garamendi spokesman Donald Lathbury said today. "We'll have a better sense of his schedule closer to the convention."
A spokeswoman for Vann didn't immediately return a call or an e-mail.
UPDATE @ 1:05 P.M.: Alee Lockman, Vann's campaign manager, says "no plans have been made as of yet" on whether Vann will go to the GOP convention in Tampa.
Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, today has launched a bipartisan Anti-Bullying Caucus in Congress.
Also included among the caucus' 41 initial members are representatives Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, and Pete Stark, D-Fremont.
"The health, safety, competitiveness and moral fiber of America is threatened by a bullying epidemic that affects more than 13 million children each year," Honda said in a news release. "As an educator of 30 years and a member of Congress who was bullied as a child, I have formed the Anti-Bullying Caucus to empower each constituency in the anti-bullying movement, including but not limited to youth, seniors, religious communities and LGBT-identifying individuals. The Anti-Bullying Caucus seeks to focus the energy and effort of the movement to forge a path forward to stop bullying -- both offline and online."
The caucus' mission statement says it's committed to uncovering all forms of bullying, from school bullying to elder abuse to LGBT discrimination, and making it possible for victims of bullying to come forward; protecting all individuals who are victims of any and all forms of bullying; and preventing bullying behavior by recognizing its manifestation as symptomatic of other, larger issues.
The caucus' launch today in Washington included a news conference as well as round-table sessions with leading advocates and a screening of the documentary film "Bully" at the Department of Education.