Saturday, June 16, 2012

Official Statement by the San Diego Labor Council on President Obama’s Announcement on Deferred Action for Immigrant Youth


SAN DIEGO - San Diego Labor Council Secretary-Treasurer/CEO Lorena Gonzalez made the following statement in response to President Obama’s announcement earlier today:

“Working families in San Diego applaud the Obama Administration’s announcement to provide relief from deportation to immigrant young adults brought to this country by their parents at an early age. These are some of San Diego's best and brightest, and the President’s actions allow them to finally live without fear of separation from their families and deportation to a country they barely remember. This talented group of young Americans was educated here and has been working to build a better community for all of us. Beginning today, they can come into the open to pursue their dreams right here, where they call home. San Diego will be stronger for their extraordinary contributions and I commend this administration for its courage and leadership in taking an important step towards a more just America.

“Today's announcement is an encouraging step in beginning to address our nation’s dire need for comprehensive immigration reform. We call on San Diego’s elected officials to work towards a common sense solution that will address the parents and families of these young people.”


San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council

The San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO represents more than 192,000 union workers in the region and advocates for an economy with more jobs, better jobs and better lives for all workers in the region - union and non-union.         

Friday, June 15, 2012

Scott Peters Earns Spot in DCCC’s Competitive 'Red to Blue' Program


San Diego, CA – The Scott Peters for Congress campaign today announced that Peters has earned a spot on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s (DCCC) highly competitive Red to Blue program. Peters is running in the new 52nd Congressional District to unseat entrenched Republican incumbent Brian Bilbray. He was selected for ‘Red-to-Blue’ because he has surpassed demanding fundraising, organizing, and infrastructure goals and successfully demonstrated to voters that he is a problem-solver who will protect the middle class when elected to Congress.

“As a former City Councilman and Port Commissioner, Scott Peters has built a solid reputation as a problem solver who gets things done. In Congress, Scott will stand up for California’s seniors and middle class, and San Diegans can trust him to fight for them rather than special interests and Big Oil companies,” said DCCC Chairman Steve Israel.

“I’m honored by the great support we’ve earned during our campaign from people who agree the 52nd needs a representative in Washington who will stand up for working families, protect Medicare and Social Security and reignite the American dream,” Peters said. “Being named to Red-to-Blue means we have the support, confidence, and momentum it takes to win in November.”

The DCCC’s Red to Blue program highlights top Democratic campaigns across the country, and offers them financial, communications, grassroots, and strategic support. The program will introduce Democratic supporters to new, competitive candidates in order to help expand the fundraising base for these campaigns.

The newly drawn 52nd Congressional District is a classic swing district - a third Republican, a third Democrat and a third other, or Decline to State.  It supported candidate Obama by 12 percentage points in 2008, but also candidate Meg Whitman by eight points in 2010. It is impossible for any candidate to win this seat without broad-based support across party lines. Since he was the first Democrat elected to represent City Council District One, Peters has consistently drawn support from across the political spectrum. He has support from progressive Democrats, worker advocates, moderate Democrats and Republicans, business leaders, and independent San Diegans who care more about results than pure party politics. 

For more information, or to get involved, go to


San Diego Janitors To Announce Ratification of Contract; Publicly Thank City Officials For Mediating on Their Behalf

San Diego, CA - San Diego janitors will be holding a press conference to thank the City and some of its elected leaders for their support and encouragement during contract negotiations.  After months of negotiations, marches, rallies, pickets, a city resolution and a hunger strike, San Diego area janitors fought back against San Diego’s most profitable commercial real estate and biotech companies – and won.

“For more than two months, the bargaining committee met with contractors who resisted wage increases and health care for our families,” said María Aldama, member of the bargaining committee and janitor for 5 years.  “We are proud of what we accomplished and will continue to do what we have to for our families.”

For over 20 years, janitors have fought hard to raise industry standards and improve wages and benefits so that their families can live a better life.  In 2012, 30,000 of USWW’s 40,000 members’ collective bargaining contracts expire, including the 1,800 office, tech and biotech janitors from San Diego and Inland Empires.

Press conference to announce ratification of new contract, and thank city leaders for standing by the janitors.


Tomorrow, Friday, June 15, 2012 at 11:45AM.

Civic Center Plaza


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Correction of Previous Statement on CD 52 Race

San Diego County Democratic Party Chair Jess Durfee has issued the following statement after his earlier remarks due to an incorrect media report on the 52nd Congressional District race:

"Based on an incorrect headline in the UT and erroneous information from other sources, earlier this evening I issued a statement that incorrectly said that Lori Saldaña had conceded the primary election in the 52nd Congressional District.

"I fully respect the decision made by the Saldaña campaign to allow the vote count to continue before making any announcement about the outcome of the election."


Congressional Candidate Lori Saldaña made the following statement today:

“Many thanks to the thousands of people who supported my Congressional campaign by volunteering, contributing and casting votes for me on June 5.

“We worked hard and garnered praise and admiration from people in San Diego and around the nation. You all helped make it a battle for the record books that has been “too close to call” for the past week.

“As the final tallies are completed, I congratulate the winners in all the primary campaigns and look forward to supporting my fellow Progressives who will continue their efforts this fall.

“I ran because Congressman Brian Bilbray has assisted in the dismantling of the middle class and I still urge his defeat this fall. But I also encourage every candidate to reject shortsighted "reforms" that actually hurt working people and commit to the more challenging task of creating long-term, systemic change at every level of government.

“This is what is needed to help middle class people today and to ensure that more people will join their ranks in the future.

“Recent reports on the near-catastrophic loss of working families’ wealth and savings show clearly that we are not the reason this country is in tough economic times. We did not cause the financial markets to collapse, and we are, in fact, the canaries in the economic coal mine, showing what happens when elected leaders at every level fail to take bold action to turn the economy around.

“I thank my supporters for their dedication and commitment an effective, powerful and unabashedly Progressive grassroots effort. There is still much to be done- in and out of elective office- and I look forward to continuing to work with you in San Diego.”

Lori Saldaña

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Peters Campaign Readies to Go Head to Head with Entrenched Republican Brian Bilbray

San Diego, CA – At 5 p.m. today the San Diego County Registrar of Voters announced that Scott Peters is now ahead of Lori Saldaña by 737 votes, with only 13,500 left to count, making it apparent that Peters will be the Democrat to take on entrenched Republican incumbent Brian Bilbray in the new 52nd Congressional District.  The Peters campaign is now readying for the bigger fight ahead.

“It’s no secret that Congress is broken,” Peters said. “But San Diegans have an unprecedented opportunity to help fix it by sending new representation to Washington.”

“This is a critical election and the voters now have a clear choice,” he said. “They can choose a Washington insider who votes to guarantee tax breaks for oil companies instead of guaranteeing Medicare for our seniors. Or, they can vote for a common-sense, problem solver who will protect Medicare and Social Security and has a track record of creating jobs and standing up for working families.”

“When government doesn’t work, it hurts the middle class -- the backbone of our economy, and the core strength of our country,” he added. “I am backed in this race by regional and national worker advocates because they know I share their values, and that I’ll fight for them, not the corporate special interests backing Bilbray.”

Peters added that while he is now focused on the Nov. 6 General Election, he is tremendously grateful to everyone who supported him in the primary.

“I am extremely proud of the campaign we ran, of my team, and of the army of volunteers who gave us their time and energy,” said Peters. “In the end, we knew this race would be decided by turnout, and our volunteers worked tirelessly walking, knocking and calling to turn out our voters. As we saw, every vote mattered.  I’m very, very grateful.”

Peters also congratulated his Democratic opponent in the primary for running a rigorous, energetic grassroots campaign.

“I congratulate and thank Lori Saldaña for running a tough, dynamic campaign,” said Peters. “It absolutely helped sharpen our focus for the bigger fight ahead.  We share a common goal of replacing Brian Bilbray, and together, we’ve proven with our combined votes, it’s doable,” he said.


Stop Special Interest Money Now Act Web Video


The Alliance for a Better California 2012 has announced releasing a web video "setting the record straight about the so-called Stop Special Interest Money Now Act." The group says the initiative, which will appear on the November ballot, should be called the "Special Exemptions Act," citing columnist Dan Morain in Sunday's Sacramento Bee, who said, "the initiative would not curtail donations by insurance companies, among the largest donors to political campaigns, or to corporations that create limited liability coprorations, as major pharmaceutical companies and others have done."

Thank You Voters in the Third Supervisorial District

Just five short months ago, a small group of volunteers launched a grassroots campaign from the dining room table at the home of one of my supporters to elected our next San Diego County Third District Supervisor.  We knew this election was critical to our future because San Diego County is facing many significant challenges and this election will be the first time in twenty years that an incumbent will not appear on the ballot.

On Primary Election Day, the Third District voters (Republicans, Democrats and Independents) spoke loud and clear supporting me as one of two finalists to be their next Supervisor.  My family and I want to thank everyone who supported our grassroots efforts in the primary which resulted in such a strong victory.

We look forward to working with you in a positive and bipartisan fashion to win this seat on November 6th.

With my proven track record of being fiscally responsible, environmentally sound and business friendly, I pledge to protect your quality of life, protect the county's AAA bond rating and reform county pensions.  A vote for Dave Roberts in 2012 is a vote for your quality of life and for fulfilling our county's potential!

Dave Roberts
San Diego County Board of Supervisors, Third District

Support the real reform candidate with a proven track record of being fiscally responsible, environmentally sound and business friendly. A vote for Dave Roberts in 2012 is a vote for your quality of life and for fulfilling our county's potential!


Monday, June 11, 2012

DeMaio v. Filner for San Diego Mayor

Okay, okay, we've know this for the past week that Carl DeMaio and Bob Filner are facing off in November.  But with the most recent Survey USA poll out giving Filner a 3 point lead over DeMaio, we are left to wonder what happens next.  As neither Filner nor DeMaio have to worry about bleeding support - core DeMaio backers aren't going to vote for Filner in November and vice versa - we are left wondering about the following groups:

Dumanis Backers: Thus far, the Survey USA poll indicates that Dumanis backers are supporting Filner by a 2:1 margin.  This makes sense given that Dumanis' support would come from women (who, thanks to various Republican platforms and policies, tend to back Democrats), and law enforcement types (who aren't thrilled with DeMaio's pension-cutting plans for the police).  In fact, Dumanis initally tried very hard to run like a Democrat by getting endorsements by Democratic officials until she was rebuffed by the local party (a move I highly approve of).  Anyway, with that being the case, most of her supporters will probably vote for Filner.

Fletcher Backers: Nathan Fletcher surprised a lot of people, myself included, by doing as well as he did in this campaign.  Initially, I thought Fletcher would be the Republican version of Bonnie Dumanis - the more moderate, more Downtown-oriented alternative to Carl DeMaio.  What I didn't realize was that Fletcher was an incredibly strong candidate, that his connections to the powers that be were rock solid, and that he would be willing to drop the Republican Party.  In so doing he ended up with 24% of the vote.  Given his background, its not surprising that Fletcher backers break evenly in the most recent poll.  That said, his backers aren't exactly sold on either Filner or DeMaio.  So, if Fletcher endorses anyone, its going to be a big deal. 

People Who Didn't Vote: By their very nature, primaries are less glamorous than general elections, and so, many voters simply stay home and wait for November.  Last Tuesday, less than half of all registered voters actually voted.  Come November, turnout will probably be around 60%.  So there is a huge chunk (12% of the Survey USA poll) of voters whose voice has not yet been heard.  So, where do these votes go?  Right now, DeMaio seems to have more of those voters, but general election voters lean heavily Democratic, and Filner could take the lion's share. 

Downtown: While both Filner and DeMaio have connections to traditional San Diego power brokers, Fletcher and Dumanis were, by and large, supported by "Downtown" - the group of real estate interests, power brokers, and developers who have dominated San Diego politics for generations.  With their preferred candidates out, where does their support (and their money) go?  Given past experiences, this group isn't going to sit out the election.  Nor are they particularly enamored with Carl DeMaio.  So, do they back Filner or do they try to make nice with DeMaio? 

All in all, there are a lot of unknowns going forward.  Both camps have to feel that their positions are relatively strong going into November.

Kris Kristofferson and Mariachi Divas Concert Benefit California Concert series celebrating the UFWS's 50th Anniversary.

June 15th, 2012
Spreckels Theatre,
121 Broadway, San Diego, CA.

Tickets are limited -- Purchase your tickets today!

For more information or to buy tickets go to or call 619-235-9500 or purchase in person at the Spreckles Theater.


Kris Kristofferson is most notably known for his success as a country songwriter in the early 1970s. His numerous hit songs such as “Me and Bobby McGee,” “Help Me Make It Through The Night,” “Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down,” and “For The Good Times” were all chart toppers. His personal and serious songwriting helped redefine country music, much the way Bob Dylan did in the mid 1960s. By the late 1980s it was estimated that nearly 450 artists had recorded Kristofferson’s work.


Founded and directed by trumpet player Cindy Shea in 1999, Mariachi Divas are making big waves on the national music scene. Mariachi Divas are a unique, multi-cultural, all female ensemble, imbued with the true flavor of Los Angeles and have been represented by women of Mexican, Cuban, Samoan, Argentinean, Colombian, Panamanian, Puerto Rican, Swiss, Japanese, Honduran, Peruvian, Tongan and Anglo descents. Cindy Shea states, "Music is a way of uniting our cultural backgrounds". In 2009, Mariachi Divas won the Grammy Award for Best Regional Mexican Album of the year for their 2008 release, Canciones De Amor. This marks the first time in the history of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences that an all-female mariachi group has been a nominee, or of course, a winner.

From the Lori Saldana campaign

We probably won't know anything definitive for another few days. There are likely tens of thousands of ballots yet to be counted, and only 790 votes separate us from Scott Peters. That's less than 2 votes per precinct. It's pretty impressive for a campaign run on volunteers and small-dollar donors, especially when you consider that Scott Peters put $1.25 million of his own money in to his campaign and spent $75-$80 per vote.