Winners and Losers – March 19

Tim Anaya, Senior Director of Communications and PRI’s Sacramento Office

Winner: Mank – Director David Fincher, actor Gary Oldman, and the team behind the Netflix movie Mank (which I have seen and highly recommend) were the big winners this week when the 2021 Academy Award nominations were announced, snagging 10 nominations – more than any other film this year.

Loser: Californians who watch TV or surf the Internet – Now that the recall election of Gavin Newsom seems like a pretty sure bet to take place later this fall, Californians will soon be barraged with several hundred million dollars of election-related television and social media ads and text messages.

Evan Harris, Media Relations and Outreach Manager

Winners: Amazon – America’s most “loved/loathed/insert adjective here” company announced the rights to an 11-year deal for Thursday Night football with the NFL. While Thursday night games don’t carry the same weight as Sunday or Monday Night Football, you can bet this first push by Amazon into prime time sports (which means more subscribers) won’t be the last.

Loser: First-time unemployment claims – First-time unemployment claims rose “unexpectedly,” according to experts, with 770,000 people filing versus the 700,000 expected claims. While claims are hitting some of the lowest levels since the pandemic, continuing claims are still over 4.1 million per Yahoo!.

Rowena Itchon, Senior Vice President

Winners: Disneyland – The happiest place on earth is set to open in April after the state issued new guidance on theme parks. Disneyland in Anaheim, before the pandemic, employed more than 14,000 people.  The mayor said that the city lost almost 90 percent of the revenue it used to get from hotels, restaurants, and its convention center. Could it have opened sooner? Probably. Around the world, outdoor theme parks have been safely operating for months.

Loser: States Planning Tax Cuts – A last minute add-on to the $1.9 trillion stimulus package might restrict states from giving tax cuts to residents.  Republican attorneys general sent a letter to Treasury secretary Yellen asking for clarification. If so, the provision could be challenged. Republican West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said in a statement: “Congress may not micromanage a state’s fiscal policies in violation of anti-commandeering principles nor coerce a state into forfeiting one of its core constitutional functions in exchange for a large check from the federal government.”

Kerry Jackson, Fellow, Center for California Reform

Winners: Amusement Park Fans – Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm, and others announced plans to reopen soon now that the state’s reopening tier has been lowered to red in Orange County, under which theme parks are permitted to operate at 15 percent capacity.

Losers (Potentially) Affluent Californians, who are the target of a wealth tax, and the rest of us, who prosper when the rich invest their money rather than hand it over to voracious government spenders.

McKenzie Richards – Development Associate

Winner: Mexico – As part of the Biden administration’s quiet attempts to curb the crisis at the southern border, the United States has signed a deal that will send millions of AstraZeneca vaccines to Mexico.

Loser: Washington Post – A recently released audio recording of a conversation between then-President Trump and a Georgia election official forced the Washington Post to issue a major retraction on what their paper falsely claimed took place in the conversation. Apparently, the Washington Post relied on the statements of just one unverified anonymous source, which typically goes against industry standards.

Nothing contained in this blog is to be construed as necessarily reflecting the views of the Pacific Research Institute or as an attempt to thwart or aid the passage of any legislation.

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