Thursday, July 3, 2008

Uptown Throwdown!

So now that the general election is upon us let's look at one of the more interesting local races to come around in a while outside of the City Attorney's race. I'm talking of course between the throwdown between Todd Gloria and Stephen Whitburn for District 3. The reason why this is interesting is that who ever wins might become the premier locally elected city Democrat. I mean after all it's possible that one of these guys might run for Mayor or State Assembly in a few years. But it also going to be very contentious as both candidates have very similar positions on choice, marriage equality, equal rights and essentially share the same progressive values. Looking at the money side, if one checks the San Diego City Clerk's office you'll see that as of 5/17/08 Whitburn raised $114,730.66 and Gloria raised $61,788.00 and during that same fundraising period from 3/18/08 to May 17th Stephen raised $8,000 more than Todd. While impressive, $73,000 of that roughly $114,000 were loans so in essence they've raised the same money. Also, both have an impressive list of endorsements. Stephen has Rep. Bob Filner and Donna Frye. While Todd has Rep. Susan Davis (his boss), Francine Busby and the rest of the Democrats on the council with the exception of Toni Atkins and Scott Peters. So like all races that have candidates with similar positions, it's all about perception and minutia.

Todd has been presenting himself as public safety choice that understands the problems of crime since he himself lives in City Heights, a low income neighborhood that has yet to be revitalized like Hillcrest and many sections of North Park. He has been presenting himself as someone who understands that the needs of the city can't just be met by the city alone but with building partnerships with community stake holders like local business and community groups to continue the revitalization of D3 and push it to the El Cajon Blvd corridor and City Heights while maintaining the atmosphere of those neighborhoods.

Steven has been presenting himself as the real Democratic choice and wants to be the voice of the district and ensure that special interests do not run the table. He styles himself as a continuation of the activist model City Councilperson like Donna Frye. Someone whose door is always open to his community and won't be bullied into making compromises that may negatively impact the district.

Now personally, I think both are compelling and are great candidates and I don't envy those that have to choose between these great candidates. But, like many intra party fights. Sometimes they get ugly quick.

Stephen supporters keep talking about how Todd isn't progressive and is in the pocket of developers. While Todd supporters feel that Stephen is condoning some of the questionable statements made by his hardcore supporters and isn't ready for prime time.

Also the November election is a totally different animal than the primary as first-time voters and voters that only vote in Presidential elections come out. These voters might receive a mailer with Stephen and Donna (by the way, during each of her runs for Mayor, her strongest support was in D3) and vote his way. Or Todd might try the Obama act. Trying to bring together DTS's and moderate Republicans to his coalition, painting himself as someone who will listen to them and take their concerns to account.

So my thoughts? Like I said both are great and would be a wonderful addition to the Council. But looking at the landscape of the new City Council and we are going to need a counterweight to incoming D5 Councilperson Carl DeMaio. This guy is smart, ambitious and brazen. I mean one day he's taking orders from the powers that be and then the next he's hugging Donna Frye talking about how he's all about reform. This guy is already laying the groundwork to take on Kevin Faulconer for the Mayorship and we are going to need some that can keep this guy in check and match him toe for toe. I personally think that if look through that prism, Todd is that guy to keep tabs on DeMaio and would be the perfect counterweight to check him.

But then again those are my two cents.

Penny for your thoughts?


Anonymous said...

In my view the major problem in SD is the local pols see development as the major source of funding for the City and have let the developers run wild esp. downtown, Mission Valley and University City. I have great concerns that DeMaio and Gloria will be of the same mindset and nothing will be done to fix this major problem This is my reason for preferring Stephen Whitburn.

Anonymous said...

Pretty sure Whitburn loaned himself $93K not 73K

Blue Diegan said...

Well, I'm going off the 5/17/08 report which is the latest report available from the City Clerk website. Under column B is shows $73,000. So again I'm going off the latest documents available.

Anonymous said...

Excellent article! A vote for Whitburn is a vote for Carl Demaio. Demaio already has his hooks into Donna Frye (Whitburn's handler). D3 needs a councilman who will oppose Demaio and Walmart. Todd Gloria is our only hope.

Anonymous said...

While Todd is a good candidate, Stephen is an exceptional human being, on top of being incredibly bright and an independent thinker.

"A vote for Whitburn is a vote for Carl Demaio?" Wow, that is utterly laughable. There could not be two more different political ideologies to contrast. While I feel like I can trust Carl only as far as I can throw him, Stephen is actually an honest human being.

Anonymous said...

Ahh, that's cause it wasn't a loan-- check out the form 497 from 5/23/08 -- Whitburn contributed 20K more to his campaign. A loan he can pay back to himself. A contribution is just that. They didn't raise near the same amount.

Anonymous said...

How is Whitburn, Mr. Renter "I sympathize with those shut out from high housing prices and can't afford to buy a house" have $93k lying around? Man, if he loses this election he goes down with all the others that have wasted big money - Thalheimer, Francis, Peters. Hope he won't miss $93k! I wonder how much more he has to give to the general, and if not much is the answer, Todd will blow him away in resources.

Anonymous said...

A vote for Whitburn IS a decisive vote for Demaio, and here's why:

Whitburn has said many times that he will back Donna Frye's every move on the council. Since June 10, Frye's agenda includes pushing Demaio's right-wing "reforms." Along with Falconer, that gives them 3 votes in the new council. If Boling or Thalheimer win they have 4. A Whitburn victory in D3 would give Demaio a majority of 5.

Bye-bye labor movement; hello Wal Mart.

Anonymous said...

Stephen has done a good job of linking himself to Donna Frye. So, after reading this post all I could think of was Donna.

What I find interesting is where has Donna helped another Democrat this past Primary election?

Answer: Only Stephen Whitburn.

Why is Donna only helping one Democratic and the party activists aren't calling her on it?

Answer: The activists don't really care, as much as the GOP, at electing more Democratics in the end. Where were them for Marti Emerald?

Stephen sounds wonderful and will be a great vote for the progressive movement, but remember that movement has to go along with Donna's movement.

I would like to have heard Stephen denounce Donna for her press confernce with Carl, but that will never happen. Some activists may like it, because Donna hasn't turn her back on them YET.

Anonymous said...

One only needs to look at the money to see the differences. Gloria says he will fight for a "living wage" all the while taking tons and tons of cash from big developers including BIA pres who oppose the living wage. Gloria says he supports gay marriage while taking money from Doug Manchester's top guys. Gloria says he supports community groups while being endorsed by Coronado politicians that fought citizens who fought runaway development. Please look at the money and not the rhetoric. And an endorsement from Donna speaks volumes. She and Stephen rock!

Anonymous said...

The above poster is grossly misinformed.

The money Gloria has taken from developers is a minority of his overall donations, most of which come from the community. Gloria has also never taken money from Doug Manchester, Manchester's name doesn't appear on any fund-raising disclosures. This compares to Whitburn's strategy of loaning himself money to be paid back by special interests after the election. Gloria won't be bought, and discloses his funding sources accordingly.

An endorsement from Donna only means that she thinks Whitburn will go along with her new pal Demaio. We need someone independent to unify District 3 behind progressive causes, that person is Todd Gloria.

Anonymous said...

That is incorrect, go to the website and go to the Gloria page. It lists just SOME of the developer interest money--it is astounding!!! It does not include the donations below $100 which reports claim are a virtual roll call of the BIA.
Also why in the world did he so willingly accept 1000s from top Manchester guys.

Anonymous said...

July 22 - 7:54 pm's comment is really beyond the pale. You know that allegation is completely false. List the names and amounts from Manchester employees and tell me if it exceeds $100. This is just another desperate attack from a campaign that knows it is about to lose.