Carly Fiorina

10:00 PM PST on Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Press-Enterprise

U.S. Senate hopeful Carly Fiorina needs to find a way to tell potential voters about her battle with breast cancer in 2009.

The former Hewlett-Packard CEO is seeking the Republican nomination against former congressman Tom Campbell and Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, R-Irvine.

She successfully underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatment, but on the campaign trail must explain it to voters who might not have otherwise known.

At a campaign stop in Colton last week, Fiorina held a roundtable discussion with a group of local business leaders.

She began by recalling a story from the campaign trail and how a person approached her and said she needed a new hairstyle if she planned on winning the Republican nomination.

“This isn’t a look of a left-wing radical,” Fiorina said at the roundtable. “This is the look of a cancer survivor.”

cuddly caucus

The Legislature has a new Animal Protection Caucus and it recently added its first Inland member.

The Humane Society of the United States announced creation of the bipartisan caucus last month. Its purpose is to “educate legislators and their staff on the need for sensible animal protection legislation.”

Assemblyman Kevin Jeffries, R-Lake Elsinore, joined last week.

“My wife wanted me to show my softer side,” said Jeffries, whose legislative record is known for conservative causes more than cuddly creatures. Jeffries noted that he has had lots of pets over the years.

A recent legislative scorecard by the PawPAC animal-rights group gave Jeffries low marks. But Jeffries and others have questioned the rankings because they reflected only several bills, some of which were not priorities for other animal-rights organizations.

“This was presented to me as sort of a middle approach,” Jeffries said of the Animal Protection Caucus.

Issa gets across

The past year has been something of a coming-out party for Inland Rep. Darrell Issa, who has used his position on a congressional investigative panel to vault himself onto the national stage.

As lead Republican on the House Oversight Committee, Issa R-Vista, has made regular work of grilling finance executives and Obama administration officials on everything from the Wall Street bailout to White House job-creation estimates.

The Republican, whose district includes Temecula, Lake Elsinore and Perris, has launched high-profile investigations into scandals surrounding ACORN, the now infamous Countrywide Financial Corp. “VIP” program and, most recently, the ongoing Toyota recalls.

Issa’s crusades have earned him frequent spots on cable news shows and on the pages of virtually every national paper. Then last week, there came evidence that the lawmaker had moved beyond mere talking-head status and into the realm of household name recognition when he found “Issa” was an answer in The Washington Post’s Sunday crossword puzzle.

Issa was tickled to see the clue for 79 across was “U.S. congressman Darrell of California,” according to his spokesman, Kurt Bardella.

“He joked that he isn’t just a four-letter word to Democrats,” Bardella said.

map makers

Would-be political line-drawers have just one more day to apply to serve on the first-ever California Citizens Redistricting Commission.

More than 27,000 people have applied to serve on the commission as of Friday, of whom about 23,000 are deemed eligible to be considered for the panel.

Of the total applications, more than 900 come from Riverside County. Almost 1,100 come from San Bernardino County.

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