A wise Frenchman once said “no poet ever interpreted nature as freely as a lawyer interprets the truth.” We learned the value of this simple wisdom in an impressive display of verbal acrobatics with the city’s legal counsel this week.

As city attorney, Jan Goldsmith participates in a seemingly impossible dance. He is an elected politician and a steadfast Republican, but he campaigned on a vow to stay out of politics. Whether he has been true to his word is a subject for debate.

Our Liam Dillon sat down with Goldsmith to have that debate and more as the city attorney gets ready to start his second term. (He ran unopposed earlier this month.) Goldsmith denies there is political motivation in his proposals, and he crafts an elegant defense of his ability to put forward creative solutions to San Diego’s problems without taking a partisan bias.

Does his argument hold water? We’ll let you read Dillon’s Q&A and decide yourself.

The Year in Public Art Thus Far

The wings haven’t flown yet and the kiss isn’t ending. Got it?

Let’s explain. Our latest roundup looks into the progress on a variety of public art, both planned and under construction. We check in on the status of those 500-foot-tall “Wings of Freedom” being considered for the waterfront and “Unconditional Surrender,” aka the kiss statue.

Included is an update on the new public bathroom in Ocean Beach, which contains the work of Tijuana-based artist Shinpei Takeda. A grand opening ceremony will be held Monday at 11 a.m.

Explaining the Big Teacher Deal

The San Diego Unified school board last night voted 4-0 to ratify a labor deal with teachers that would negate the layoffs of more than 1,500 educators.

Our latest explainer with NBC 7 San Diego looks closely at the deal. Spend two minutes watching it to learn everything you need to know about the deal. Our Will Carless enlists the help of students at Central Elementary in City Heights to explain the recent teacher contract. The agreement, which teachers also supported in a landslide vote, will negate hundreds of layoffs.

And if you want to keep learning about the labor deal and what it means for local schools, make sure to check out our full listing of recent education coverage.

An astute reader provided a nice supplement by citing California’s dismal performance record in per pupil spending. Despite all or the recent talk of cutbacks, it turns out that San Diego stacks up pretty evenly against the state average.

Congressman Bilbray Will Not Vote to Repeal Health Care Law

Not a single Republican voted in support of the Affordable Care Act, and they’ve already begun to talk about repealing the health care reform law the Supreme Court largely endorsed yesterday. Despite the previous lockstep action by the GOP, Republican congressman Brian Bilbray, who’s running for reelection here, announced in an interview with KPBS that he does not plan to support any efforts to overturn the law.

Bilbray is a staunch critic of the spending increases proposed in the program, but he also claims that major overhaul of the health care system is indeed necessary.

Golden Gate Bridge, Hollywood Bowl, San Diego Condos?

The U-T got the full report from developer Nat Bosa about his latest downtown condo project. It is slated to be completed in 2016 next door to San Diego’s tallest building, the Electra, an earlier Bosa project. Condos will start at $750,000.

Bosa got our attention, saying building would be San Diego’s Sydney Opera House. Although the building will not host operas. And it does not actually resemble the iconic structure in the slightest. Oh well. San Francisco gets the Golden Gate Bridge.

We get condos.

Correction: An incorrect headline in yesterday’s Morning Report misstated the number of weeks the school year would be shortened if San Diego teachers are furloughed 14 more days. It would shorten the year by three weeks, not two. We regret the error.

Colin Weatherby is a freelance writer. You can reach him at colin.weatherby@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter at @CCWeatherby.

Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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