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Roundtable: Taking A Stand On Immigration, Mattis As Defense Secretary, Effects Of Legal Pot


Immigration Legislation, Mattis as Defense Secretary, Pot and San Diego criminal justice


Andrew Bowen, metro reporter, KPBS News

Chris Jennewein, editor, Times of San Diego

Tony Perry, freelance journalist

California and the Trump Administration

Deep blue California doesn’t have much in common with Donald Trump. California legislators have announced they will be preparing for battle on several fronts, particularly on immigration. State Sen. Ben Hueso, D-San Diego, introduced the Due Process For All Act bill that would fund legal help for noncitizens facing deportation. Democrats in the legislature also sent a letter to Obama asking him to block off-shore oil drilling.

Related: California Officials Work To Boost Support For Immigrants Ahead Of Trump’s Tenure

James Mattis Chosen For Defense

Marine Corps Gen. James “Mad Dog” Mattis (ret.), who led Camp Pendleton troops into battle in Iraq, is Donald Trump’s choice for Secretary of Defense. He will need a waiver from Congress, as there is a law prohibiting retired military from serving as Defense Secretary. Mattis differs with Trump on the use and efficacy of torture, on conciliation toward Russia and on the Iran nuclear deal. His nomination is seen as a boost for the Marine Corps.

Related: Trump Picks Gen. James Mattis As His Defense Secretary

Legal Pot and the Legal System

Proposition 64 legalizing adult recreational use of marijuana is having an immediate effect on the court system here and the rest of the state. Some felony-level possession charges were reduced to misdemeanors. People in prison for marijuana crimes may petition to be resentenced. Those who have served their time but are stuck with a criminal record may petition to have the felony record removed.

In San Diego, the re-sentencing process is fairly rapid because of lessons learned from the passage of Proposition 47 in 2014, which reduced several felonies to misdemeanors. The San Diego District Attorney's office and the Public Defender’s office are cooperating.

Related: Marijuana Legalization Takes Root In San Diego Courts

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