Friday, July 11, 2008

Some Republicans are Freer than Others

It appears that the freedom-loving Republican Central Committee has an issue with members who attempt to express their freedoms.

According to the San Diego Reader’s City Lights section this week, there were a series of slate mailers put out to advertise candidates running for positions on the Republican Central Committee. Thing was, the people selected for ballot placement were those most likely not to challenge Chairman Tony Krvaric.

According to Joe Deegan of the San Diego Reader:

Krvaric did not reply to my phone message asking if he were behind the Central Committee lists on the slate mailers. Members of the committee’s executive board haven’t confessed to anything either, according to Laura Sumrall, who thinks her close association with Steve Francis made them “a little cautious” of targeting her completely. (She opposed the committee on its endorsement of Jerry Sanders over Francis for mayor of San Diego.) “But the discussion of the Central Committee lists happened in a silent meeting the executive board members will all deny,” Sumrall tells me. “We have a mole who was sitting in the meeting outraged but kept his mouth shut and told us about it later. And a couple of them have slipped and said, ‘But, you know, you can’t have people on the committee who cause trouble and aren’t willing to work together.’ ”

And this:

“There are a few people,” according to Cowlishaw, “who would like to control everything, including Tony Krvaric. They want to have no dissent, no confusion about what they want done. They want everybody to get along and have the same idea and be on the same page. I can understand that to a certain degree, but there has to be some discussion. I am vocal in my opinions, though mostly outside of meetings. But I don’t think my views were anti anything.”

And this:

But things happened a bit differently with the recent mailers. Printed at their bottom, a note stated that an asterisk next to the names of the candidates meant the candidate had paid to be on the slate. All the candidates for the Republican Central Committee had the asterisks. But Sumrall says she didn’t pay a dime to appear on any slate. “So I called the number on the mailer that had my name, and I got a recording,” she says. “It did not identify a business. It just said to leave my name and number, which I did. I also asked why I was on the slate and who paid for it. Nobody ever returned my call, though I called twice.”

Records at the office of the San Diego County Registrar of Voters suggest what happened. Between January 1 and May 17, an organization called Citizens for a Better San Diego County took $18,300 in contributions, including $8300 from Atlas Hotels and $5000 from Thomas Sudberry. (Sudberry is currently petitioning the City of San Diego to build Quarry Falls, a massive condominium development in Mission Valley.) Citizens for a Better San Diego County, whose treasurer is Seventh District candidate for San Diego City Council April Boling, then made payments to five groups for “slate mailers to support SD Co Republican Central Committee candidates.” Family, Faith and Freedom Association and California Taxpayer Protection Voter Guide each received $2500. Citizens for Good Government received $2100, California Voter Guide, $2875, and Official Non-Partisan Voter Guide, $3000.

I’ll give the Democratic Central Committee this; It may be a chaotic and entertaining free for all but at least contrary opinions are expressed.

I guess freedom of dissent is not the Republican way, but buying a Central Committee is.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Democrats endorse Aguirre

My understanding was that the vote for the endorsement had one nay and all the rest aye.

From today's UT:

SAN DIEGO – Incumbent City Attorney Michael Aguirre won the overwhelming endorsement of the county Democratic Party last night and said afterward that he was eager to ramp up his re-election campaign.

“We'll soon be announcing our campaign consultants and our campaign manager and I'll be going door-to-door,” Aguirre said. “We're also setting up 50 coffees throughout the city, and we'll be carrying out a very vigorous campaign.”

Aguirre, a Democrat, faces San Diego Superior Court Judge Jan Goldsmith, a Republican, in the Nov. 4 election. While the race is ostensibly nonpartisan, party support can be helpful to candidates through mailers to party members and other assistance.

Aguirre finished second to Goldsmith on June 3 in a five-person race that included two other Democrats, including City Council President Scott Peters. The county Democratic Party did not endorse anyone in that race because it did not reach a consensus about which of the candidates was most electable, said party chairman Jess Durfee.

In November, however, “we're supporting Aguirre 100 percent,” he said.

Aguirre has been a polarizing figure at City Hall as he has frequently clashed with Mayor Jerry Sanders and the City Council on issues of the deficit-plagued employee pension fund and the role of the city attorney.

All the while, Aguirre has declared himself the city attorney for the people of San Diego – a posture that resonated with some in attendance at last night's meeting at the State of California Building downtown.

“I don't know of anybody who has stuck his neck out as much as Michael Aguirre,” said Mary Christian-Heising, a longtime Democrat. “Let's get behind the Democrat who has stood for us.”

How much the party will spend on campaign materials has not been decided.

“We haven't developed our plans for candidate support at this point for the fall campaign,” Durfee said. “We'll assess that as we look at our resources.”

Aguirre may need all the help he can get. He was elected in 2004 by a slim margin – 50.4 percent to 49.6 percent – over Leslie Devaney.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Help Strengthen Living Wage Enforcement in San Diego

The Center on Policy Initiatives has been on the forefront of pushing legislation that benefit all San Diegans. They were the principle movers on the Living Wage Ordinance that passed in 2005 and now are pushing for a strengthening of the Ordinance to include strict penalties for non-compliance and an enforcement provision that will safeguard compliance would prevent stuff like this and would ensure that the contractors aren't skimming off the fat of taxpayer dollars and stealing from the City. Please help CPI by contacting the City Council in urging them to support this effort. Click here to find out more! It's time to put some real teeth on this policy that is helping San Diegans out of poverty.

Bonnie D wants 3rd Term

So Bonnie Dumanis has decided not to run for Attorney General and instead focus on reelection in 2010. I guess partisan witch hunts don't play well outside of San Diego County. Also I guess vowing not to turn the D.A.'s office into a political office and then backtracking and endorsing in almost every race, thereby turning it into more of a political operation then one of the public trust doesn't play either. So know the question becomes will she waltz in the office like she did in 2006 or will someone challenge her in 2010?
Any ideas on who?