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Rep. Mimi Walters is hopeful about Republicans keeping their California House seats. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

California Republicans like Rep. Mimi Walters are feeling more hopeful about holding onto their seats come November, reports Politico's Rachel Bade. They're banking on President Trump's rising approval rating (42% across the U.S.) and their work to repeal the state's gas tax.

Yes, but: A closer look at California's politics by party affiliation show potential signs of trouble for the GOP.

California Republicans' warning signs:

  • The president's approval rating in California was just 29% throughout 2017.
  • The number of registered Republicans in the state has reached an all-time low (25%), per data from the CA secretary of state. And Orange County's registered Republicans have consistently declined to 37% from 43% in 2010.
  • Half of California residents are non-Hispanic white, less than the country's demographics, per Gallup. And only 47% of residents belong to a church or synagogue, compared to 56% of adults across the U.S.

What they're saying: Democrats argue California's shifting demographics (particularly in places like Orange County, Walters' district) and liberal attitude, as well as the GOP tax law's effects on state and local deductions, won't make it easy for Republicans in the fall.

The other side: Rep. Walters maintains there is still reason to be hopeful. “I got 37,000 more votes than President Trump did," she told Politico. "That means that the people in the 45th district identify with the policies that I support and support me because I’m in line with what they believe in.”

Go deeper: Republicans are nearly outnumbered by independents in California

Go deeper

House Judiciary Committee advances reparations bill in historic vote

Sheila Jackson Lee. Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee voted 25 to 17 Wednesday to advance a bill that would create a commission to study reparations for Black Americans who are the descendants of slaves.

Why it matters: "No such bill has ever come this far during Congressional history of the United States," said Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), who sponsored the bill, per the Washington Post.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Officer Kim Potter arrested, charged with manslaughter in Daunte Wright's death

Kim Potter's booking photos. Photo: Hennepin County Sheriff's Office

Kim Potter, the former police officer charged with second-degree manslaughter in the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright, was released on a $100,000 bond on Wednesday, Hennepin County jail records show.

Why it matters: Sunday's shooting of the 20-year-old Black man in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, just 10 miles from where George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer last year, has reinvigorated Black Lives Matter protests and led to three consecutive nights of unrest.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden names Erika Moritsugu as senior AAPI liaison

Erika Moritsugu. Photo courtesy: National Partnership for Women & Families

President Biden has named Erika Moritsugu as deputy assistant to the president and Asian American and Pacific Islander senior liaison, the White House announced Wednesday.

Driving the news: The decision follows weeks of pressure from AAPI leaders to include more Asian American representation at the Cabinet level and in senior administration roles.