Friday, September 23, 2011

KPBS: DeMaio’s Plan To Fund Pothole Fixes Questioned

DeMaio, who's running for mayor, calls for dedicating future revenue to street repair.

But UCSD political scientist Validimir Kogan says past mayors Susan Golding and Dick Murphy had similar plans for police staffing and libraries that didn’t pan out. Kogan says one reason is that when revenues begin to increase, voters tend to want that money used to restore services that were cut.

Read the article here.

SDUT: Issa endorses Mitt Romney for president

U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Vista, endorsed former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney for president on Thursday, a month after assailing his chief rival in a speech in San Diego.

Read the article here

SacBee: Field Poll: California's voters inclined to support new political maps

California voters are inclined to support the political maps drawn by a commission they created, but nearly two-thirds are unfamiliar with the work of the California Citizens Redistricting Commission, a new Field Poll shows. 

The survey found huge majorities of Democrats, Republicans and nonpartisans unfamiliar with the 14-member panel and its work this year to craft new political boundaries for 80 state Assembly seats, 40 Senate seats and 53 members of Congress from California.

Read the article here.

Capitol Weekly: GOP option: Nest state Senate districts in Assembly maps

According to Tony Quinn, a GOP political consultant and special witness for the Republicans challenging the maps, they’ve opened up an old-fashioned option for settling their legal challenge to the new Senate maps: nest the Senate districts into the Assembly maps produced by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission. The lawsuit is part of a larger effort that also includes a proposed voter referendum that would reject the maps the commission drew for the Assembly. Quinn said that he is not receiving any pay for his role in the case. 

Read the article here.

LA Times: Campaign treasurer Kinde Durkee fined by ethics agency

Already facing criminal charges in a separate case, campaign treasurer Kinde Durkee was fined Thursday by the state’s ethics watchdog agency for failing to properly report $76,000 in spending by the unsuccessful Assembly campaign of Stuart Waldman in 2008.

The state Fair Political Practices Commission approved $8,000 in fines against Durkee and Waldman, who is now president of the Valley Industry and Commerce Assn. in Los Angeles.

Read the post here.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

OB RAG vs Dumanis Campaign: Ragster Threatened and then Campaign Removes All Addresses of Residential Fundraisers After Rag Publishes Location of Ocean Beach Site

Cross-posted from OB Rag

There’s an unofficial and underground tussle going on right now between the OB Rag and the Bonnie Dumanis for Mayor Campaign. It is subtle and you have to look literally between the lines.

But it involves vague threats against Doug Porter, our OB Rag reporter, who published an article about Dumanis’ “secret” campaign with a comment referring to an Ocean Beach fundraiser for the District Attorney on Thursday, September 22nd.

First, Doug wrote his post about the lack of public appearances by Dumanis during this segment of the San Diego mayoral campaign, in fact calling her efforts a “non-campaign”. Dumanis is refusing to join the other candidates on the campaign trail, she cancelled her appearance at City College, she passed up the first mayor debate held on September 17th at Politifest, and is limiting the appearances she is making, as Doug points out:

Dumanis appears to be staking her political future on a campaign that seemingly involves meeting as few actual voters as possible. Unless they have cash.

And then Porter drops his other shoe with more criticism:

Her public appearances for the coming month include fundraisers, cocktail fundraisers and more fundraisers, including one this Thursday (September 22) in the 4500 block of Del Monte Avenue, overlooking Ocean Beach. The suggested minimum donation for all these events is a mere $150. No word on whether there will be drug testing at the OB event.

Porter had obtained his information from the Bonnie Dumanis for Mayor website, easily accessible by and to the public.

Doug then cites sources of opposition to the Dumanis for mayor train:

The Dumanis non-campaign is, in part, dictated by ongoing and very vocal opposition to her practices as District Attorney regarding medical marijuana co-ops (actively prosecuting) and domestic violence towards women (alleged indifference).  Opponents aligned with both causes have vowed to actively campaign against her Mayoral bid, ….

 And then a commenter at Doug’s post, who was not happy with how DA Dumanis has prosecuted recent domestic violence cases, wrote:

… Thanks for the info on Bonnie in OB on Thursday night. Maybe a few NOT DUMANIS friends can get together with our bullhorns, signs, and James Gang NOT DUMANIS T-shirts to have a little fun? God Bless the OB Rag!

 And Doug responded:

gosh, what a grand idea to welcome Bonnie to OB. here’s the link to the invitation.

Again, all Doug did, was copy the link from the “Event” page of the Dumanis for Mayor website.  The link went to the invite published below.

And then the proverbial – using the vernacular – “shit hit the fan.”

A couple of things happened: someone named “Ashley” left a comment to Doug’s post alleging that she was posting his home address, as a sort of seemingly retaliatory measure to get back at him for posting the location of Thursday’s fundraiser.  Well, first of all, it was an incorrect address for Doug – and we have to apologize to whomever’s address it really was – it has since been removed.

And then more. Thursday night’s fundraiser in Ocean Beach is being hosted by a number of people, including an OB resident Kelly Spoon.  We have found out that “Ashley” appears to be related to the Spoons.

Kelly Spoon – who apparently works for high-powered lawyer and Democrat Lynn Schenk – fired off an email to the OB Rag vaguely asserting that we had posted :

“information on your site that directly effects the safety of personal property and individuals. I request that you take it down immediately.”

In a reply email to Spoon, we asked what information she was referring to.  And she answered that we had listed the block number for the fundraiser, and that block only had 7 houses on it, implying that it would not be difficult to find.  (We checked – the block has at least 14 residences on it – many McMansions.)

Meanwhile, sometime during the evening of September 20th, while Doug was at an OB Rag meeting, Kelly Spoon left this threat on facebook:

Kelly Spoon
Mr. Porter, You have personal [sic] created a situation that could cause harm to my families property and/or physical person. Your style of journalism is completely unprofessional and I will talk to everyone I know about it.

Now, granted this is a vague threat against Doug. Yet it’s a threat by the executive assistant to a well-known Democrat (turn-coat?) about his supposed unprofessional style of journalism, and that she “will talk to everyone [she] know[s] about it.”  Presumably, this means her boss as well.  And Lynn Schenk, her boss, does know a lot of influential people. She was a member of Congress, worked for Gov. Davis, and staged an unsuccessful run for the state Attorney General.  So, the vague threat has some weight behind it.

Early this morning, a commenter – wanting to assure everyone that no “violence” at the fundraiser was being contemplated – left this:

Sorry to see Doug get embroiled in all this drama about addresses.  I would like to assure everyone that if a few ND [No on Dumanis] protesters do go over there, we promise to conduct ourselves with the utmost of care. We promise not to wave picket signs right in people’s faces, keep our yelling to a friendly level, & not call anyone there a “WHORE” unless Bill “Whore” Gore shows up. I am so looking forward to debuting my new James Gang NOT DUMANIS T-shirt at this event.

This is a residential area and I grew up on that hill right around the corner.  I am sorry to see that the neighborhood has changed so much in the wrong direction.  This address is a McMansion- an ugly house built out to the very edges of the property line but it does have a lovely, unobstructed view of the Pacific. If Bonnie does still show up, and the protesters remain on the public sidewalk, without creating too much of a noise disturbance – we are well within our rights to protest this evil, wicked woman supping in Ocean Beach with misguided hosts. The homeowners SHOULD be ashamed that they have the temerity to invite DIRTY DUMANIS into the good karma, bohemian enclave of Ocean Beach-home of DOUBTLESSLY many medical marijuana patients.

The OB Rag Legal Department responded to Kelly Spoon’s last email:

Nothing in Doug Porter’s post or in the subsequent comments was “private” information. The address, location and time of the Dumanis fundraiser is clearly accessible to and by the public on her website.  If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

  Spoon answered:

…  I am co-hosting the event and a friend of Ms. Dumanis. The event is not on the website of the campaign and if it was it was put there by mistake and has since been removed. This is a PRIVATE event my family has been a living in the community of Ocean Beach for over 20 years and has always been a strong community advocate. We shop local businesses we promote to our friends in San Diego how wonderful it is to live in Ocean Beach and to come visit. As  a community neighbor it would have been gracious of your reporter to contact us to see if blogging our address was okay with us. I would like the line in the article removed about the specific block if at all possible. Thank you for all your prompt responses. I am a reader of your Rag. So you can label me as an uppity woman.

While we appreciate Spoon’s backhanded endorsement of the Rag and of Ocean Beach, we still have to say that Porter originally obtained all his info off the Dumanis website – which at the time – was clearly accessible by anyone.

But we did go once more to the Dumanis website, and sure enough, ALL the addresses of the private residential fundraisers for Dumanis had been removed. A couple to be held at restaurants still had addresses.  The remaining information on the different “invites” clearly had the addresses lifted – as the blank space attested to this last minute “editing”.  The invite page to the OB fundraiser was missing in its entirety.

So, we are on the edge of a new segment of the Dumanis for Mayor Campaign, the stealth segment where now even information about her appearances at fundraisers is being limited, so the public doesn’t get to see her at all.

Question: Do the people, the voters, of a community have a right to know who is holding a fundraiser within their community for a politician – who is not well liked by many in that community – who is running for public office but who is at the same time avoiding the very public she purports to serve?

by Frank Gormlie

SDCDP: Democrats Endorse Filner For Mayor, Councilmembers for Reelection in San Diego

Members of the County Democratic Central Committee this week unanimously endorsed Congressman Bob Filner for Mayor of San Diego, formalizing the Party's support in what is sure be one of the city's most important and exciting campaigns in years.

During a candidate forum, Filner highlighted his vision of San Diego as a 21st-century leader in renewable energy, commerce, and good jobs.

The Party also endorsed three incumbent Democrats on the San Diego City Council who are running for reelection: Sherri Lightner in District 1, Todd Gloria in District 3, and Marti Emerald in the new District 9.

Endorsements in other municipal, county, and school board races on the June 2012 ballot will take place over the next several months. The California Democratic Party will weigh in on candidates for Congress and the State Legislature at its next convention, which will take place February 10-12 in San Diego.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

POLITICO: Dianne Feinstein donates $5 million of own money to her campaign

Feinstein will transfer the money to her campaign by the end of September. Candidates and incumbents can spend an unlimited amount of personal funds on their own campaigns, although Feinstein is not expected now to commit any more of her own money beyond the initial $5 million, according to sources close to the campaign.

Feinstein and her campaign aides have not been able to access her Senate reelection campaign account since the Durkee scandal broke nearly three weeks ago. Whatever funds remain there are being held in the First California Bank, the bank that Durkee relied on for a number of the campaign accounts that she oversaw. Durkee alone was legally authorized to access many of those accounts.

Read the post here.

SDCDP Endorsements

Last night the San Diego County Democratic Party made the following endorsements:

San Diego City Mayor - Bob Filner

San Diego City Council District 1 - Sherri Lightener
San Diego City Council District 3 - Todd Gloria
San Diego City Council District 9 - Marti Emerald

Capitol Weekly: Republicans likely to abandon referendum on congressional maps

Republicans backing a voter referendum to overturn California’s new congressional maps are on the verge of dropping the effort, sources say.

One reason is a lack of enthusiasm among California’s GOP congressional delegation. One of the newest but most-prominent members of that delegation — Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield — reportedly led those arguing that it wasn’t worth fighting the new maps.

Read the article here.