Joel B. Pollak

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large and in-house counsel at Breitbart News. A graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, he also has a degree in Jewish Studies from the University of Cape Town. He ran for Congress in 2010 in his hometown of Skokie, IL and worked as a Research Fellow at the Hudson Institute, as well as speechwriter to the Leader of the Opposition in the South African Parliament. He enjoys improv comedy, rock 'n' roll, and the literature of liberal apostates and iconoclasts. His wife Julia is a Ph.D. Fellow at the Pardee Rand Graduate School and his daughter Maya is unbelievably cute.


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California County Demands Photo ID to See New Voting Machines

California is one of many states that do not require photo identification for voters at polling places. The state government believes, as do many Democrats and the Obama administration, that requiring photo ID for voting is a subtle form of racist voter suppression, akin to the old Jim Crow laws of the pre-civil-rights-era South. Apr 23, 2014 4:48 AM PT

Exclusive: Democrats Could Fail to Survive Primary in Waxman's District

Under California's relatively new primary system, all candidates compete in a common primary, with only the top two finishers proceeding to the general election. In the recent past, that has allowed Republican candidates and independents to split the Democratic vote in an otherwise heavily Democratic area. It is possible, with Carr and Williamson making the most of their early advantages, that no Democrats would survive the primary in Waxman's 33rd congressional district. Apr 23, 2014 4:44 AM PT

California County Demands Photo ID to See New Voting Machines

California is one of many states that do not require photo identification for voters at polling places. The state government believes, as do many Democrats and the Obama administration, that requiring photo ID for voting is a subtle form of racist voter suppression, akin to the old Jim Crow laws of the pre-civil-rights-era South. Apr 22, 2014 11:17 PM PT

Prolific Scholar/Wikipedia Editor Dies After Joshua Tree Climbing Fall

The New York Times reports that Dr. Adrianne Wadewitz, a prolific Wikipedia editor and scholar of 18th-century British literature, died tragically earlier this month after injuries sustained in a rock climbing accident in California's Joshua Tree National Park. Apr 20, 2014 1:13 PM PT

Israeli Sues Obama Administration for Discrimination

An Israeli man is suing the Obama administration after Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx denied his complaint against Kuwait Airways for refusing to allow him to purchase a New York-London air ticket. The suit, filed Mar. 31 at the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, alleges that the "Secretary has officially endorsed Kuwait Airway’s policy boycotting Israeli nationals" and violated the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Apr 20, 2014 12:35 PM PT

'Shrimp Boy' Lawyer Says FBI Entrapped, 'Wined and Dined' Chow

The attorney representing alleged Chinatown gang boss Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow says that the FBI entrapped his client, and "wined and dined" him using "millions of dollars, liquor and cigarettes seized in other cases," the Associated Press reports. Chow was indicted in March, together with State Sen. Leland Yee and several others, in a complex prosecution involving allegations that included bribery and gun-running. Apr 20, 2014 7:31 AM PT

Jerry Brown Pardons Marijuana Convicts

More than two-thirds of the 63 pardons issued by California Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday were for drug-related crimes, including "selling, transporting or manufacturing" marijuana, the Sacramento Bee reports. Apr 20, 2014 6:47 AM PT

California Braces for Intense Wildfire Season

On the heels of one of the worst droughts the state has ever experienced, California is bracing for another big challenge as summer approaches: wildfires. Thus far in 2014, the Wall Street Journal reports, fires have been breaking out in California at twice the normal rate, and firefighters are already on 24-hour rotations. Apr 20, 2014 6:11 AM PT

4/20 Day: Marijuana on California's Other Religious Holiday

For many observing 4/20 Day, this Easter Sunday is just another day to enjoy getting high in the sunshine with friends. The day also coincides with the final, sacred two days of the Jewish holiday of Passover, starting at sundown. Jewish law discourages marijuana use, but unlike the Sabbath, when fire may not be used, smoking is tolerated on weekday festivals. Undoubtedly, some of the faithful will be "passing over" more than the matzah. Apr 20, 2014 5:31 AM PT

Blue State Blues: We've Betrayed Prague--Again

The president who told Prague in 2009, "There is violence and injustice in our world that must be confronted," now begs Russia for a diplomatic "solution." The people of Prague have seen it before: in the betrayal by Britain in 1938, in the hand-wringing of the U.S. in 1968. But Neville Chamberlain and Lyndon Johnson had not stood in Prague and promised to defend the freedom and independence of "small countries." Apr 18, 2014 6:28 PM PT

Fly to Tijuana, Walk to San Diego

The Associated Press reports that U.S. Customs and Border Protection has approved plans for "the nation's first cross-border airport terminal." The terminal, run by Otay Tijuana Venture, would include a pedestrian bridge connecting Tijuana, Mexico and San Diego, California. The company would pay border enforcement costs. Apr 18, 2014 3:42 PM PT

Two Dems Accuse Party Leaders in CA-33 of Changing Rules to Favor Wealthy Insiders

Two Democratic Party candidates in the primary race for California's 33rd congressional district in West Los Angeles have accused local party officials of using an arbitrary fundraising minimum to favor established insiders--then raising that minimum at the last moment to exclude them from a recent candidates' forum. Apr 18, 2014 3:11 PM PT

Pete Peterson: A Conservative Idealist, Winning in California

Amidst the general gloom about Republican electoral fortunes in California, past and present, came some good news last week: Pete Peterson, director of the Davenport Institute for Public Engagement and Civic Leadership at Pepperdine University, is leading the race for Secretary of State by double digits. Apr 17, 2014 3:29 PM PT

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