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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Poll: Brown Leads Gov Race, Donnelly Second

A new poll shows incumbent Democrat Jerry Brown far ahead of any rivals in the gubernatorial election, enjoying the support of 57% of likely voters, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Second place, with 17%, is Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, a Republican who enjoys Tea Party support. Apr 9, 2014 5:36 AM PT

Pew: California 49th out of 50 States in Election Administration

Though the administration of elections is improving in most states, according to a report by the Pew Charitable Trust's State and Consumer Initiatives, California still ranks near the bottom, at 49th out of 50 states, ahead of Mississippi. North Dakota topped the list, which compared performance in 2012 with that of 2008 according to a variety of measures, such as access to online registration and performing post-election audits of the vote. Apr 9, 2014 5:14 AM PT

Wretched Brandeis Bows to Muslim Pressure, Withdraws Degree from Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Brandeis University has prostrated itself before radical Islam and the idol of political correctness, withdrawing an honorary degree that was to have been granted to feminist and Muslim critic Ayaan Hirsi Ali next month. The university's excuse was that Ali had said nasty things about Islam in the past: "we cannot overlook certain of her past statements that are inconsistent with Brandeis University’s core values,” it said in a statement. Apr 9, 2014 4:58 AM PT

Wiccan Police Officer Sues L.A. for Religious Discrimination

An LAPD sergeant who has been on the force for nearly 25 years is suing the city, claiming that he suffered religious discrimination for his religious beliefs, according to a news report by CBS News' L.A. affiliate. Apr 8, 2014 2:09 PM PT

Karl Rove: Kashkari Is Best 'to Lose to Jerry Brown'

Veteran Republican political strategist and Beltway insider Karl Rove told a gathering of Sacramento business leaders that Neel Kashkari would be the party's best choice "to lose to Jerry Brown" in the November election, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Apr 8, 2014 12:25 PM PT

Reynolds: Silicon Valley Scares Americans

Veteran blogger and law professor Glenn Reynolds points out in his latest USA Today column that Silicon Valley has lost the trust of the American people. The problem is not just that the tech giants have become embroiled in the scandals surrounding the National Security Agency. Rather, the problem is that they are increasingly seen as political players themselves--especially in their alignment with Washington and the left. Apr 8, 2014 8:43 AM PT

What Is It About San Francisco?

The strangest thing about San Francisco is that no matter what time of the day or night it is, it feels like late afternoon. The city seems to bask in the glow of that soft sunshine at all hours, in that pleasant sense of ripe beauty that lingers long after the rest of the country has fallen dark, in a kind of eternal, and somewhat melancholy, youth. It's a feeling that seems so odd when you're there, and haunts you after you leave. Apr 8, 2014 5:55 AM PT

Valadao: Incumbent? Who, Me?

Nathan L. Gonzales of Roll Call's "Rothenblog" has noticed something interesting about freshman U.S. Rep. David Valadao's self-description on the primary ballot in California: he has declined to note that he is an incumbent congressman. Instead, Gonzales notes, Valadao will describe himself as "Farmer/Small Businessman." Apr 7, 2014 6:43 PM PT

Vandals Overturn Smart Cars in San Francisco

Local NBC and CBS affiliates in San Francisco reported Monday morning that several Smart cars were upended around the city on Sunday night. KCBS reported that three cars were overturned in two different neighborhoods and NBC Bay Area spoke to witnesses who saw six to eight hooded suspects tipping the cars over. Apr 7, 2014 8:42 AM PT

Rahm Emanuel Has Learned Nothing About Foreign Policy

Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel granted the New Republic's Isaac Chotiner what the magazine describes as a "contentious" interview--and that's putting it mildly. The mayor is highly combative and profane, showing a contempt for the public that is almost as sharp as his contempt for the media. There are, however, a few policy remarks worth noting, and one of them is Emanuel's pronouncement on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Apr 7, 2014 5:44 AM PT

Gallup: Illinois Residents Have Least Trust in State Gov't; California Sixth-Worst

A new Gallup poll reports that only 28 percent of Illinois residents trust their state government, by far the lowest rate of any state in the Union. The next-worst levels of trust are in Maine and Rhode Island, where only 40 percent of residents trust their government. California is sixth-worst, with only 49 percent of residents telling Gallup that they trust their state government--despite Gov. Jerry Brown's high approval ratings. Apr 7, 2014 4:38 AM PT

Gallup: Illinois Residents Have Least Trust in State Gov't; California 6th-Worst

A new Gallup poll reports that only 28 percent of Illinois residents trust their state government, by far the lowest rate of any state in the Union. The next-worst levels of trust are in Maine and Rhode Island, where only 40 percent of residents trust their government. California is sixth-worst, with only 49 percent of residents telling Gallup that they trust their state government--despite Gov. Jerry Brown's high approval ratings. Apr 7, 2014 4:38 AM PT

America's 'Best-Looking' Attorney General Engaged; Obama Hardest Hit

California's Attorney General Kamala Harris, who is "by far the best-looking" attorney general in America, according to President Barack Obama, is now engaged to be married, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The happy news of Harris's engagement comes exactly a year after President Obama praised her appearance--and her skill--at a Democratic Party fundraiser in California. Under criticism, he apologized for the remark. Apr 7, 2014 4:25 AM PT

Silicon Valley Congressional Race: Singh's Strong Poll Prompts Frenzy

What triggered the frenzy appears to be the surprisingly strong showing of Singh in a recent poll by the liberal Public Policy Polling group, which showed the Republican in second place, ahead of well-funded Democrat challenger Ro Khanna, who enjoys the backing of Silicon Valley's tech giants. Apr 6, 2014 3:52 PM PT

SEIU to Place $15 Min. Wage on San Francisco Ballot

The Service Employees International Union (SEIU), one of the country's most powerful public sector unions, will file a ballot initiative to raise the minimum wage in San Francisco to $15 per hour (from $10.74), which would make it the highest in the U.S. The SEIU wrote the "Minimum Wage Act of 2014," and is working with a group called the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Apr 6, 2014 4:00 AM PT

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