Ben Bradford

Ben Bradford is a city kid, who came to Charlotte from San Francisco by way of New York, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles. Prior to his career in journalism, Ben spent time as an actor, stuntman, viral marketer, and press secretary for a Member of Congress. He graduated from UCLA in 2005 with a degree in theater and from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism in 2012. As a reporter, his work has been featured on NPR, WNYC, the BBC, and Public Radio International.

Volkswagen will spend more than $2 billion in California, under a settlement for selling cars that evade federal and state emissions tests.  Capital Public Radio Ben Bradford reports on the California portion of the deal announced yesterday (Tuesday).

A gun control measure has qualified for the November ballot in California.  The Secretary of State's office announced yesterday [Thursday] backers of the initiative have collected enough signatures.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports that doesn't necessarily mean it will appear on the ballot.

The long, slow decline in unemployment in California continued during the month of May, according to new state numbers.  As Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports, job creation slowed from April, but the overall trend is positive.

The California state Legislature yesterday (Monday) commemorated the victims of the mass shooting in Orlando.  Lawmakers largely avoided the usual debate after a mass shooting about gun control.  But that conversation was expected to begin again today (Tuesday).  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Ken Vincent for KVCR

Voters across California are going to the polls today (Tuesday).  Precincts opened at 7 a.m., but not everywhere.  Three California counties will not have any polling places today.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports that mail-in-only elections could be in the future for the entire state.

An effort to dissolve California's embattled Public Utilities Commission is moving forward.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is campaigning in California this week, even though he does not need to win the party's primary.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports that the candidate drew thousands to an airport hangar in Sacramento.

They watched in hundred degree heat as the Trump jet landed to the orchestral theme song from the movie Air Force One.

[orchestral music]

Trump told the crowd he’s campaigning to win the general election in California.

A new poll shows Hillary Clinton with a wide lead over Bernie Sanders in the California Democratic primary.  That's on the heels of another poll showing a tight race.  The discrepancy speaks to the difficulty of predicting who will vote in the California race, as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Capital Public Radio

It's a marathon week at the California state Capitol, as lawmakers in the state Assembly and Senate look to pass hundreds of bills before a deadline.  They began yesterday (Tuesday), as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

With polls showing the Democratic primary race in California tightening, Bernie Sanders will look for an edge from the state's most theatrical union ... Not Actor's Equity -- nurses.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders will be hosting many more political rallies and other events before California's June 7 primary.  Both Democratic Presidential contenders consider California key to finally closing the book on their primary races before this summer's national convention in Philadelphia.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford explains.

Californians who wish to vote in the June primary have until the end of the day [MONDAY] to register. The state has already seen a surge in registration, as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Secretary of State Alex Padilla says close to a million people in California have registered or updated their information so far this year.

Padilla 1 – What we’re seeing this year is far above and beyond what’s typical for a presidential election year. (7s)

200,000 voters updated or registered early last week.

The California economy had a much better April than March, according to new unemployment data.  The jobless rate ticked down again, and the state created more jobs, as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

For the 67th month in a row—that’s more than five and a half years—the state unemployment rate continued its slow dip. Data from the California Employment Development Department shows the unemployment rate fell to 5.3 percent in April, down a tenth of a percent from March. But that’s still above the national mark of 5 percent.

California state senators approved a slate of sweeping new gun control measures, including limits on purchasing ammunition.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

California Voters will likely decide in November whether to abolish the death penalty or to streamline the process.  Proponents for two competing ballot initiatives met Tuesday for a hearing at the Capitol.  The sides debated whether the state's current broken system can be fixed.

A new report finds one in six housekeepers, home care providers and other domestic workers in California earnes less than a minimum wage.  UCLA researchers were presenting their findings at the State Capital on Tuesday.  They're telling lawmakers both domestic workers and their employers need assistance.

An Executive order from Governor Jerry Brown and a new proposal from the State Water Board would do away with the current system of water conservation.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Voter registration at the California DMV has entered the electronic age as of this month. Ben Bradford reports from Capital Public Radio in Sacramento.

The departure of Ted Cruz, John Kasich, and a competitive Republican primary in California could depress what was expected to be a surge in voter turnout.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports on whether that could be a problem for Republicans in "down-ballot" state races. 

California Democrats elected many of the delegates who will travel to the party's national convention and officially choose a presidential candidate.  They held caucuses around the state yesterday (Sunday).  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford attended one in Sacramento, which selected Hillary Clinton delegates.

California oil and gas regulators say better regulation could have prevented the massive Aliso Canyon gas leak near Porter Ranch.  They testified before a state Senate committee yesterday (Tuesday), as Cpaital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Five candidates in two different parties competed in the first debate for an open California U.S. Senate seat in more than two decades.  The debate was hosted in Stockton by KCRA-TV.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford sums up the two-plus hours of action last night (Monday) in 90 seconds. 

It's signature-gathering season in California.  Campaigns are working to qualify about a dozen ballot measures, and each one requires hundreds of thousands of voter signatures.   Collecting them has turned into a big business.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford has this report.

California State University faculty will hold off on a strike scheduled to begin next week.  As Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports, the Chancellor's Office and faculty say they've tentatively agreed to a pay increase, and they'll announce the details later today.

California water conservation continued to drop in February and the state narrowly missed the 25 percent mandatory goal ordered by Governor Jerry Brown last year.  Now, as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports, the state Water Board is considering how to change the conservation mandate, after recent rain.

The California State University system and its faculty remain unable to agree on pay raises.  The latest step in the process is issuance of an opinion by an independent fact-finder.  It supports the faculty's call for a five percent raise and it clears the way for a strike, as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

The California Secretary of State, county registrars, and state lawmakers are considering fundamental changes to the state election process.  A new report from the Pew Charitable Trusts finds similar changes in Colorado lowered cost.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

A Democratic presidential candidate visits Southern California today.  Bernie Sanders holds a rally in San Diego, as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

The University of California would conduct research on gun violence, which the federal government doesn't, under a bill that passed the California state Senate education committee yesterday (Wednesday).  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Community College students are typically considered to fall into two categories: those who complete a course of study or transfer to four-year institutions, and those who don't. A new analysis by California Community Colleges finds taking just a few classes can have a significant benefit for a third group. Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.