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September 10, 2012 | By Jean Merl, Los Angeles Times
Rep. Howard Berman, gripped in a tough reelection battle with fellow Democratic Rep. Brad Sherman for the same San Fernando Valley congressional district seat, is expected to get endorsements Monday from two prominent Republican U.S. senators. Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, plus Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, the former Democrat turned independent, will back Berman, the congressman's campaign confirmed Sunday. Although Democrats outnumber Republicans in the recently redrawn district 48% to 26%, both candidates have been courting GOP voters as well as those without party affiliation, who make up about 21% of registered voters there.
September 6, 2012 | By Steven Zeitchik, Los Angeles Times
NEW YORK - Robert Pulcini and Shari Springer Berman's debut feature, the offbeat comic book adaptation "American Splendor," was greeted with so much success when it came out in 2003 that the filmmaking duo couldn't imagine things going any other way. "We had this level of delusion that a lot of first-time filmmakers have but maybe multiplied because of the reception," Pulcini said of the Paul Giamatti movie, which HBO's film division allowed them...
August 24, 2012 | By Jean Merl, Los Angeles Times
It's the latest twist in an increasingly vitriolic campaign for Congress: Rep. Brad Sherman is going after payments made to the brother of his rival, fellow Democratic Rep. Howard Berman. In a complaint filed Thursday with the Federal Election Commission, the Sherman campaign alleges that Berman vastly, and illegally, overpaid Michael Berman or his political consulting firm for campaign services during two decades in which the congressman faced only token reelection challenges and spent relatively little to reach voters.
August 13, 2012 | By Jean Merl, Los Angeles Times
After decades of cruising effortlessly to reelection, dignified, statesmanlike and unruffled, Rep. Howard Berman has come out swinging against fellow San Fernando Valley Democrat and congressional colleague Brad Sherman in the fight over which man gets to stay in Congress. First came a website knocking Sherman's record: Just three bills passed in 15 years, two of them to rename post offices, it declared. Then Berman rounded up a seasoned Washington hand to pile on, telling reporters last week that Sherman had indulged in "fantasies" about his role in reforming the nation's troubled financial institutions (nonsense, said Sherman's campaign; his role was well documented)
May 7, 2012 | By Jean Merl, Los Angeles Times
Rep. Brad Sherman's reelection campaign is asking federal authorities to investigate what it says is improper coordination between his main rival, fellow Democratic Rep. Howard Berman, and a "super PAC" formed to support Berman in the nationally watched contest. In a complaint planned for delivery to the Federal Election Commission on Monday, Sherman campaign manager Scott Abrams alleges that a Berman operative did not wait the required 120 days between working for the Berman campaign and contracting with the super PAC. Such fundraising groups, which emerged as a controversial factor in the presidential primary contest, can collect unlimited amounts of money to use in support of, or opposition to, specific candidates.
May 5, 2012 | By Jean Merl and Richard Simon, Los Angeles Times
Rep. Howard Berman crouched on a Sherman Oaks baseball field on a recent Saturday, striking a pose with two 4-year-old boys who had not yet had a chance to break in their uniforms. A few miles away, Rep. Brad Sherman clutched a boxed American flag that had flown over the nation's Capitol, to give to the players and parents gathered in Woodland Hills for the start of Little League season. The opening-day ceremonies were a far cry from the weighty matters that typically occupy the veteran Democratic congressmen: Iran's nuclear program, the staggering national debt, anxiety about the economy.
May 4, 2012 | August Brown
It's only a few days before the new Cahuenga-area nightclub AV is set to open, and co-owner Tosh Berman is still futzing with the decor. "This silver pattern on the walls isn't working. I'm gonna replace it," he said, surveying his new domain while dressed in an all-black get-up and military haircut that made him look like a successful model/ninja. He picked up a chestnut-colored leather couch cushion embossed in a dandyish paisley pattern. "These are detachable, I wanted them to be able to come off at night.
April 30, 2012
The Democratic slugfest underway in California's 30th Congressional District is the product of two political developments of recent years: the open primary and nonpartisan redistricting. The former means that the two top finishers in the upcoming congressional race will face each other again in the fall, even if both are from the same political party; the latter has resulted in two titans of the Southern California Democratic Party having to face each other. Rep. Howard Berman and Rep. Brad Sherman are admirable public officials with long and impressive records of service.
April 17, 2012 | By Jean Merl and Richard Simon, Los Angeles Times
Two veteran congressmen fighting for their political lives have amassed millions as they battle for a single San Fernando Valley seat, dwarfing the war chests in most other hot House races in Southern California this year. Rep. Howard Berman has out-raised fellow Democratic Rep. Brad Sherman recently, but Sherman had more cash left to spend — about $4 million to Berman's nearly $2.5 million — new campaign filings show. A "super PAC" that supports Berman's candidacy reported large contributions from two Los Angeles-area business titans, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.
April 5, 2012 | By Jean Merl, Los Angeles Times
Rep. Howard Berman, who is locked in a pitched reelection battle with fellow liberal Democratic Rep. Brad Sherman, likes to say he can work with Republicans to get things done. But even he may have been surprised when a conservative GOP colleague offered him some effusive support recently. "I don't tell people to vote for Democrats," Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista) told an audience at the Beverly Hills Hotel. "If there were a good Republican in the race, I wouldn't tell you to vote for Howard, probably.
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