Saturday, April 17, 2021
Uncategorized Progressive candidates lining up for 2016

Progressive candidates lining up for 2016


There’s a shortage of challengers to Mayor Ed Lee– but the progressives have no lack of candidates for the next races for supervisor

Dean Preston, tenant activist, is considering a challenge to Sup. London Breed in D5
Dean Preston, tenant activist, is considering a challenge to Sup. London Breed in D5

By Tim Redmond

APRIL 20, 2015 – While everyone is lamenting the lack of a candidate to challenge Ed Lee, the progressives are actually working to develop candidates for supervisor in 2016, and it’s looking like an impressive lineup.

The odd-numbered districts are up next year.

In District 11, where Ahsha Safai, a loser in 2008, is once more trying to be the landlord and downtown candidate, Kimberly Alvarenga, former chief of staff to Assemblymember Tom Ammiano and current political director for SEIU Local 1021, is taking a serious look at the race.

Alvarenga would have immediate and strong support from the progressives, thanks to her long history of community work. She’s well known in the district, where she’s lived since 2008.  And she would have labor – a big factor in D11, where there are a lot of labor households.

She would also almost certainly have the support of the incumbent, John Avalos, who is termed out – and remains very popular in the district.

Safai might have the mayor, but Ed Lee has not shown a lot of coattails in the past. And with all the questions that came up the last time he ran – particularly around real estate – he is hardly an immediate frontrunner.

Meanwhile, Sup. London Breed could be facing a serious challenge from tenant advocate Dean Preston. Preston, who runs the statewide advocacy group Tenants Together, told me he’s looking at running in D5 in 2016 – and while it’s hard to oust an incumbent, Preston would challenge Breed from the left in what remains one of the city’s most progressive districts.

He will have strong support from tenants, who are a majority in the district, and will be able to raise enough money to run a very competitive race.

Of course, there’s already a race in D3, and anyone who has any sense would have to agree that former Sup. Aaron Peskin has a good chance of ousting Lee’s appointee, Julie Christensen.

I’m not sure who is going to run when Sup. Eric Mar steps down in D1, but it’s safe to say there will be a progressive candidate. I hear School Board Member Sandy Fewer is thinking about it.

And let’s keep in mind that while Lee is personally popular (right now), there’s polling data showing that his job performance is not. Only 38 percent of the voters polled think Lee is doing a good job. That’s not much of an endorsement of what he’s doing.

So the mayor has Ron Conway, and has scared any major candidate from running against him – but the progressives are hardly dead. And outside of the Mayor’s Office, in a couple of years they could be back to setting the legislative agenda for the city.


Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond has been a political and investigative reporter in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He spent much of that time as executive editor of the Bay Guardian. He is the founder of 48hills.


  1. Dean not a lost a “statement” upon,challenging the established institutionalized political machine. Darling Londonfrown” it was performance when speak of diversity district (5) not talking give, which London continue. Deceive residents where social progress narcotics sold Fillmore to endure social blight awaiting. Resolution when London approves REITS whom,eager to displace the renters forgotten Dean. Not being mean as seems London conspired with Ed role model” allow RAD loan housing never increase density. Dean seeking to displace London lack of appreciate of community when debated notice audience where. Diversity where the Black folks,taught remain silent if there vocal or critical London. Would have lost I know color politics…Dean bought up lack of attention for City Hall going candidate. Ratio of affluent overwhelming district (5) own REITS awaiting lottery to annexed by Pacific Heights!

    A joke Dean further discuss lack public polices parks,schools and roads London only spoken riddles I know. It considered racial Dean,advocate of fair housing “Tenants Clinic” which detested London supporters BOMA S.F executives,Small Pro SF,ACRA and Thelpo S.F where’s employment. For those colored yeah margin of (Black males) with credentials, this no laughing matter. Dean bought up stereotypical male whom, not conservative nor affluent is reason London won? Where effort bring prosperity district (5) when London is out of office! When say social blight time to fight with are might eventually lower income be displace! London audience was diverse I’m baffled why senior politicians gathered did by refreshments for youth whom experiencing gentrification racial profiling. Prevail San Francisco no London all Black men, are not felons awaiting triumphant victory London pardon them. Your a joke Dean bought issues of irresponsibility I know taken vague why police against your people! London insult to civil rights,pass measures to allow gentrification whom eventually defeat you! Dean run again never concede bought statistic not all Whites living alright refuse speak against social blight!

  2. As an 11 year resident of D11 (I recently moved to D10 but have kept my D11 house as a rental) I have to say Tim did not do his homework.
    Avalos is not popular – he lost his own district to Ed Lee in 2011 (Avalos – 3,121 Lee – 5,706). He was elected in 2008 by a small margin, mainly because Safai split the homeowner vote with Myra Lim. Avalos, with the incumbent advantage, ran (like Ed Lee in 2015) virtually unopposed in 2012.
    65% of 94112 residents are home owners – working class home owners but owners none the less. These are people who put 30 – 50% of their take home pay towards mortgages, property taxes and ever increasing homeowner fees imposed by the city. These homes are the biggest investment most of these people will ever make.
    D11 neighborhood associations tried to protect these homes from speculators who view single family homes as potential triplexs. D11 homeowners opposed the legalization of in-law apartments and Avalos, siding with the developers, called them racist. Really? – 94112 homeowners are 49% Asian, 29% Hispanic, 15% white, 4% black, 3% other – who are we trying to keep out?
    I hope Safai can pull it off this time, but he has to unite all the homeowners in D11, reaching out to all of the ethnic groups that make up this wonderful hood.

  3. “I already asked if anyone right of center was on that self-selected group and not a NO.”

    Actually, answer that I saw was:

    “I would say our group is about evenly split between moderates and more progressive voters”
    And Quentin Kopp is right of center. Hell, he’s to the right of Dianne Fineswine, who herself is well to the right of San Franciscans. This is a guy who Pete Wilson appointed to a judgeship. The establishment right doesn’t recognize Kopp as one of their own, but that’s only because he’s honest. He’s one of the few honest, ethical conservatives I know of. That makes him a class traitor in the eyes of much of the local oligarchy. But it does not make him any less conservative.

  4. Define “very recent.” Better yet, provide a link. The last time I saw numbers like those was some time before these last 3 polls.

  5. This isn’t just “Larry’s” poll. It’s a poll by an organization with both progressive and moderate members. And, I’d rather have someone be transparent and admit their biases unlike some who pretend to be unbiased, when even you admit that such a thing doesn’t exist.

  6. Greg, we can probably agree that all polls have some degree of bias.

    The problem here is that Larry effectively admits his bias from the start AND his poll results are way from the norm we have seen from other polls, skewed of course towards what he personally believes.

    Not a coincidence,

    I maintain, however, that an assessment of Lee’s performance must take into account what he promised to do. And Lee has done a good job of achieving his goals, even if you prefer different goals.

  7. But Larry said specifically that he was trying to avoid the “values” categorization. And that he wanted to focus on job performance.

    The problem is that he failed to define what job performance is – it is ding what he said not doing what you like.

  8. It’s actually valid if the real question is about “job performance” (which Larry claimed but obviously failed to solicit)

    How do we measure Lee’s perforance? Not by whether we like the results (subjective anyway). But by looking at what he promised and then seeing if he delivered on those promises.

    And he has delivered. He promised pro-jobs, pro-growth, pro-development policies and that is what he delivered. In fact that is why you and Greg whine about him – precisely that he has performed what he said he would do.

    The fact that you disagree with jobs, growth and development is immaterial to the question

  9. No, the last poll showing 65% approval for Lee was very recent – a few weeks ago. And that fits with earlier polls.

    Larry’s poll is an outlier, and his evident bias makes his poll very dubious

  10. Stood for themselves some time ago. Now that the voters have come to know what’s behind the smile and mustache, they’ve reassessed to Ed Lee’s detriment.

  11. I don’t care how “moderate” (btw a meaningless term) someone is,if they are unfriendly and rude, they aren’t going to get elected once they start engaging with the public.

    That doesn’t mean a “moderate” (again a meaningless term in SF just like Progressive) can’t win the seat, I’m just saying who ever wins will likely have some good people skills as well as a message that voters in that area might like.

  12. Ironically, he might do very well, because a lot of pollsters have become propagandists for their employers. Rasmussen has made a career of it.

    I will say this though… that’s pretty obvious bias. Someone like Ras is better at it. He asks neutral questions (unlike Sam’s push-poll phrasing), but then he manipulates the data with his own voter mix. Harder to see the bias that way.

  13. What we do know is that Ed Lee always had at least 50% more votes than any other single candidate at every round of the election count. That is a landslide.

    And Larry, if you want us to take your poll serious, you would be well advised to not make your anti-Lee bias so blatantly obvious, because it totally discredits any attempt you might otherwise make to present your “poll” as neutral, objective and unbiased.

  14. It does not mean that 60% of the voters chose Ed Lee. It means that 60% of the REMAINING voters choose Ed Lee. Some 197,242 votes were cast for Mayor. With the last count, Ed Lee received 57,160 votes. 52,254 were discarded — almost as many as Ed had to win. In no world is this 60%.

  15. Ed Lee got 60% of the votes in the runoff with Avalos. Which means that 60% of voters selected Lee as one of their picks. Many like me didn’t put Lee 1st because we knew he would not be eliminated

    Are you saying 120% of SF residents support a policy of building no new homes?

    Didn’t think so.

    I cannot recall a single person saying to me in real life that we can solve the housing shortage by having less homes.

  16. More than twice the percentage of San Franciscans appear to support a moratorium on market rate housing in the Mission on the first round than supported Ed Lee in 2011 on the first round.

    It should dance to a victory.

  17. Yes, correction, there isn’t a credible candidate running against Lee.

    Apparently they are all scared of losing. Such commitment to the cause.

  18. The paralysis on the Mission housing moratorium exists because a majority think that it is a dumb idea to try and create more homes by not building more homes.

  19. Maybe, but Avalos is well to the left of the general population of D11, which is less an isolated hotbed of communism like D9 and has much in common with more moderate west-side districts.

    While Mar is to the left of the average D1 voter.

    So even if both Breed and Christensen are toppled, which seems unlikely, moderates could pick up a couple of seats too. And of course the mayor will be elected with a huge majority, as things look now, so mayoral vetoes will be untouchable.

    There is a clear moderate majority in Sf and it would be an electoral travesty if that were not reflected in the supervisors.

  20. Why are those on the left obsessed with “getting rid of” anyone who disagrees with them?

    And how did that work out for Stalin?

  21. Roy/Sam/Stupidal:
    You’re probably doing this at least nationally; since this isn’t the only blog you’re trying to destroy, I can forgive you if you sometimes get other posters mixed up. But for the record, I have never written anything about the Chicago mayor’s race.

  22. Roy/Sam/Stupidal:
    And yet, here you are, doing exactly that. I take it your post is meant to be a gratuitous slap in the face to Tim, as if to say, “Screw you and your rules. I can post under however many sock puppets I want and there’s nothing you can do to stop me.”
    Except, of course, there is. It would be easy to get rid of you, but for whatever reason Tim doesn’t want to. That’s his business, but he should know that it does chase away legitimate commentators.

  23. If no candidate has near a majority of votes in the first round, i.e. does not dance to victory, then it will take multiple rounds of vote transfers/exhaustions to produce a winner.

    IRV/RCV is a dog and should be repealed.

  24. Now, here’s an assertion that can be refuted Sam. Define landslide majority and we’ll see in November. BTW, it shouldn’t be 50% plus 1.

  25. Sam, please name all those polls you’ve seen that have Ed Lee with an easy and consistent 60 to 65% approval rating. Margins of error and sponsoring organizations would be useful also.

  26. Sam, this may be among the most absurd assertions you’ve ever made. Good thing you’re not a pollster. You’d starve to death.

  27. The only purity tests that matter are the ones at the ballot box.

    I do not set the terms for political purity at the ballot box, San Franciscans do.

    Progressives have lost much of whatever political connection with San Franciscans they once had.

  28. Well, it’s good to know that while we are mostly fighting for the same thing and, at a macro level, we are aligned, as I will never pass your ‘purity test’ we cannot be more efficient by fighting this fight together.

  29. No, the enemy of losing is winning.

    We will never put the fire out in the City until we extinguish the self immolation that’s been going on for 10 years.

    The people who get paid to put out fires want to continue to get paid to put out fires.

    Yet the City continues to burn, more today than yesterday, more tomorrow than today.

    Do you all enjoy losing, is that why you all continue to lose? Is the romantic identification with “the most vulnerable” so strong that you can only posit yourselves winners when you lose like them?

  30. Opposing corruption and standing for ethics in government, the honest delivery of government services, is neither left nor right.

    San Franciscans from across the City support ethics reforms that Ed Lee and the Board of Supervisors have opposed.

    It is Ed Lee and the Board of Supervisors who are out of step with San Franciscans, way to the right of this debate.

  31. Thanks for reinforcing that the enemy of “good” is perfection.

    Keep tilting at windmills. There is little distinguishing nuance between you and Soupetal.

    Put out the fire, then clean the house.

  32. The only titanic that is sinking here is the progressive titanic.

    You would have there be no criticism of that.

    No, we should count our blessings that Tim and his friends have so graciously bestowed the benefit of their services upon us, be grateful and shut up.

    Demanding parity with business, what is supposed to be a mainstream liberal ideal, is now radical leftism.

    We’ll see a good game talked about fighting corruption, but that too would embarass “friends,” so the corrupt arrangements go on.

    Apparently negative electoral feedback contains no useful information, it was the voters who were wrong.

    Imagine how much more powerful these hijackers would become if they get a good chunk of a billion dollars in bond funding?

    That’s retirement funding for them all.

  33. “Why are you here, to defend the professional stalwarts who have squandered a ransom in political capital and all but capitulated to the neoliberals?”

    Just like many leftists, you focus upon the poorly arranged dance chairs and demand that they be properly ordered on the sinking Titanic.

    How is going after Tim helping to the battle the neoliberal attack upon our fair city?

  34. I agree with most everything that Tim says he wants to accomplish politically, but the articles he writes and the sources he cites do not connect to get us from here to there.

    This is why I dismiss these pieces as cheerleading rather than activist journalism.

    Tim’s usual sources are by no measure activists, they are narrowly scoped paid advocates who have skin in the game and have proven both too slow on the uptake as well as ineffective in the courses of actions they take. Witness the paralysis on the market rate housing moratorium in the Mission.

    Bold, decisive action that inspires is not in this crowd’s toolbox.

    If the activist journalist actually held consistent political values and goals over time, then the activist journalist would make life uncomfortable for anyone standing in the way of achieving those goals and realizing those values in public policy.

    But Tim views activist journalism as nurturing his political kinship network because they say that they want to accomplish what Tim says he wants to accomplish.

    After Tim dispatched The SFBG into the ditch, the same crowd of supplicants to the public trough threw money at Tim to keep him whole, payment for services rendered.

  35. I am here because I want to see a coherent political force to counter the neoliberal rampage that is destroying this city.

    Why are you here, to defend the professional stalwarts who have squandered a ransom in political capital and all but capitulated to the neoliberals?

    Clearly, naming dysfunction is more of an offense to you than being on the receiving end of serial ass kickings.

    Perhaps this is because, unable to defend against your opponents, you turn your attentions to easier task of attacking individuals who seek to hold your professional friends accountable?

  36. Safai was not a good candidate last time around. He came off as arrogant and not very nice. When I met him he refused to shake my hand, and was kinda taken aback. Avalos played the “Mr. Nice” card enough to win . Unless he went to charm school, I can’t see Safai winning, no matter how many times he prints that pic of him with a cell phone and a rake.

  37. Larry, in the interests of transparency can you post the entire poll, and divulge the source of the funding?

  38. Why are you always seeking to silence other commentators?

    Do you really lack that much confidence in your views? Why d contrary opinions scare you so much?

  39. Greg, you misread or misunderstood what Tim said. At the announcement of Disqus Tim said that he did not want commentators to use more than one Disqus account at the same time.

    He said nothing about people changing their handle over time as long as they only use one at any one time. His intent, I believe, is to stop people posting under different names agreeing with themselves, as marcos was caught out doing.

  40. I thought Tim wasn’t allowing sock puppets. I thought that was the whole rationale for saddling us with Disgus.

  41. True, jhayes. That conservative majority seems very much in peril. Progressives have strong candidates in D1, D3, D5, and in D11 even Sam concedes that Ashai Safai is a sure loser: “Once branded a loser, it’s done.”

  42. If you are correct, Lee will lose in November. But I don’t see it. Obviously you talk to a certain class of people who are very different from me, but most people I talk to are content with Ed Lee.

  43. Yes, Larry has totally revealed his anti-Lee bias and, at a stroke, invalidated his own poll.

    And he has the audacity to accuse other polls of being “biased”!

  44. “Mayor Lee did not “dance to an easy victory” in 2011. He was ranked as the first choice by 36% of voters and passed the 50% mark after 11 times through the ranked choice ringer and tens of thousands of votes were discarded.”

    This shows a basic misunderstanding of how ranked choice voting works. When there are 14 or so candidates each one must be individually eliminated and, in many rounds, fewer than 500 votes are reallocated (more like 200 for the early rounds). That isn’t Ed Lee’s fault. The number of rounds is basically a function of the number of candidates.

    Also, you mention that 36% percent of the voters ranked him first. For the record, the next highest total was Avalos, with 18%, roughly half of what the Mayor got.

    In the final RCV tally, Lee won with 60%, a pretty big margin over Avalos. Are you saying the RCV procedure distorted the true sentient of the voters? Then shouldn’t you be actively calling to repeal it?

  45. I think that in the last few months there has been a shit in opinion on Lee, but I’m not sure that the reasons that Larry cite are why.

    If I had to guess, and this is based upon talking with a lot of SF natives who are ‘old timers’ (and some them are Republican), they all think that the city is being sold out to those with money. Everyone screams housing crisis and the middle class is being squeezed out, but most of the housing being build is luxury and not really meant for families or long-term tenants.

    It isn’t just one business closing. It is many. And then there are ‘sentinel closures’ that cause greater concern than others, such as Jeffery’s. Personally, I’m shocked that the Cartoon museum will be gone soon. It is as if what makes San Francisco unique must be destroyed so more people can live here.

    FYI, I believe that we can have it all – uniqueness and housing, but not with the current jokers in charge.

  46. Followed by you, who invariablty posts about the number of comments Sam has, and then bitches about “trolls”.

    It’s the Circle of Life.

  47. Larry, I’m sorry, but your bias is impossible to avoid.

    First you say that the reason for the difference is the wording of the question. So I point out that KPIX asked the same question and got a very different response which is in line with just about every other poll.

    So now, alas, it isn’t the wording of the question but a shift in public sentiment (why didn’t you say that the first time???). Do you really think that a significant percentage of the electorate (a) know about Capps, (b) care and (c) blame the Mayor because a restaurant is closing and the owners are retiring to Hawaii? THAT’s responsible for such a big drop? And Ron Conway suddenly became a negative only over the past 4 months? And obviously, the Mayor is still found in the company of Ron Conway and is still praising his involvement.

  48. Yes, the explanation is that there was a shift of nine points from approve to disapprove over the past four months. Not surprising considering the various controversies the mayor has seen emerge, from his handling of his appointee to the Port Commission now being sued for wrongful acts as a commissioner to the loss of many landmark businesses such as Capps Corner to the sale of Flax. One further indication that his political environment has changed comes from Ron Conway, reported in the Chron as saying that he can not be seen as underwriting re-election efforts for Mayor Lee because it would backfire. Four years ago, Mayor Lee was frequently found in the company of Conway and praising his involvement.

  49. Mayor Lee did not “dance to an easy victory” in 2011. He was ranked as the first choice by 36% of voters and passed the 50% mark after 11 times through the ranked choice ringer and tens of thousands of votes were discarded. It would appear his ranking on job performance today is about where it was four years ago.
    If we were to judge on whether Mayor Lee kept his promises, that’s a wide field. I suggest you contract with a professional pollster, as we did, who can vet the questions for bias. In terms of whether voters believe he kept the promises you cite, I would note that Mayor Lee’s lowest job approval rating — by a significant margin — is among Republicans. Perhaps you are talking to the wrong audience and need to reach out to conservatives and Republicans if you want to improve Mayor Lee’s standing.

  50. Larry Bush: “The reason the results look different than the more common polling put out by partisan groups like Mayor Lee’s backers is that we asked whether voters approved or not of the mayor’s job performance, not whether they approved of him.”

    KPIX Poll from 12/14: “Question 1: Do you approve or disapprove of the job Ed Lee is doing as Mayor?”

    47% said yes, 35% said no. Source:

    So do you have an alternative explanation? Because what you said above isn’t the truth. I didn’t see any reference to his smile in the KPIX poll.

    Also, it took of of 30 second to find all the raw findings of the KPX poll….and all I can find is one snippet from yours.

  51. I’d describe him as a centrist. I believe he ran as an independent and was never a registered republican.

    My concern was that Larry’s self-selected group of volunteers were to the left of the average SF voter. That is not a disrespectful claim. I’d like to know how many of his group identify as Republican, conservative or libertarian?

  52. Quentin Kopp is a leftist?

    And you haven’t denied that your question was biased and unnecessarily disrespectful.

  53. Except in the history of surveying job performance, nobody has asked the question that way.

    People are going to vote based upon their “personal values and beliefs”.

  54. The way Larry described this self-selected group appeared to me to indicate that it was left-of-center.

    Larry has not exactly denied that categorization. And in fact it is typical in SF that those who get actively involved in politics are to the left of the average SF voter

  55. No, I am not suggesting that. But the words you chose to question if there was any potential for bias were very biased and unnecessarily disrespectful.

  56. You contrasted this line of inquiry with what you described as the more typical poll which asks merely if the respondent likes the mayor.

    I think there is a third category which has to do with values. Ed Lee danced to an easy victory as major on a pro-jobs, pro-growth, pro-development platform. Even his critics agree that he has done a good job of that.

    So a better job performance question would be this:

    “Regardless of your persona values and beliefs, would you agree that Ed Lee has done a good job of implementing what he said he would do if elected, i.e. support jobs, business, development and the economy?

    I think that question would receive a very high positive response. He has been effective otherwise the NIMBY left would not be so opposed to him

  57. “Or is this group in fact a typical cabal of leftist interventionists who, say, might carefully craft the wording of a poll to try and make make a popular and effective mayor look bad?”

    You can dish it out but you can’t take it. “Cabal of leftist interventionists ” ? I guess we should be thankful that you haven’t lapsed into your red-baiting, when you used to call people or their efforts ‘communist’ when you disagreed.

  58. Q3 Do you approve or disapprove of Mayor Ed

    Lee’s job performance?

    Approve …………………………………………………. 38%

    Disapprove……………………………………………… 46%

    Not sure …………………………………………………. 16%

  59. Actually I do not criticize Tim at all. I think he is a decent, honorable man, and I even think he is a competent journalist.

    What I do criticize is where he allows bias to creep into his reports, and where his arguments are flawed and ineffective. I believe that he appreciates such constructive criticism and I particularly admire his commitment to free speech – something that you clearly are afraid of.

  60. For the first time ever, I’ve been polled at least 6 times in the last few weeks. I think your assessment is correct – they are scared.

    Any effort that has good talking points could deflate the mayor’s power.

  61. I always start out by discussing the issues.

    What typically happens is that someone like you launches a personal attack on me, like you did here, presumably because you cannot counter my argument and you just hate to see your pet policies get deconstructed so effectively.

    And if you start on me, I will then slap you down. Better to comply with Tim’s civility imperative and stick to the topics, and avoid nastiness.

  62. Tim allows a few trolls to dominate most of the comments on this blog. It is the only reason I have not donated any money to his efforts. The trolls often insult Tim and others.

    Given that there is no moderation, there’s not much that can be done; whatever you post will be answered with wild claims about the evil progressives, “libtards” and other nonsense, and Soupetal (Sam) insists upon having the last word, so you efforts to enlighten are really wasted.

  63. The poll was not designed to make the mayor look good or bad. I would say our group is about evenly split between moderates and more progressive voters, although we do not ask about political affiliation. I think regardless we strive to be fair and even-handed because it goes to the core of our credibility. The fact that the former Ethics Commissioners were appointed over a period of time, ranging from appointees of Mayor Brown, the city attorney, the district attorney, the Controller, the Assessor and the Board of Supervisors speaks to the diversity of our viewpoints. The Civil Grand Jury members were all appointed by the Superior Court after a vetting process.

  64. Accurate assessment sffoghorn. More specifically, he fears losing the conservative majority on the Board of Supervisors.

    Sam, this post is unrefutable. It’s all opinion and speculation.

  65. Larry, what percentage of this group of volunteers would you describe as conservative, republican, libertarian or even moderate?

    Or is this group in fact a typical cabal of leftist interventionists who, say, might carefully craft the wording of a poll to try and make make a popular and effective mayor look bad?

  66. I am Larry Bush who helmed the poll reported by Matier and Ross. It was done by Friends of Ethics, a group of volunteers committed to improving ethics standards and practices. We include six former Ethics Commissioners, the past Foreperson of the Civil Grand Jury and members from several prior Civil Grand Juries, the past co-ordinator of Common Cause, and we have diverse political affiliations, aligned with figures from Quentin Kopp to the Green Party. Individually and together we have been advocates successful at improving public disclosure of campaign finance, lobbying and conflict of interest, all topics covered in our poll. The polling firm we used is the same one used by political consultants engaged in campaigns of various political hues. The reason the results look different than the more common polling put out by partisan groups like Mayor Lee’s backers is that we asked whether voters approved or not of the mayor’s job performance, not whether they approved of him. A popularity poll has too much wiggle room and can refer to his smile, his style, or his general outlook. We believed going into an election an equally important factor for voters is job performance and so we focused on that. The results were in line with similar questions about Obama and Congress. People are right to question polls, but wrong to assume that unsourced polls being cited by commentators here offer more reliable insight. We stand by ours.

  67. That’s quite entertaining, because I cannot recall either you or Greg ever refuting one of my arguments. I’m scoring about 200-0 so far, usually because you both resort to cheap insults when you cannot rebut, counter, debunk, refute or other disprove my claims

  68. Sam, when are you going to learn the difference between refute and rebut? Rebut is to counter, refute is to disprove conclusively and I don’t think you’ve ever done that here.

    Still, it remains a favorite part of your vocabulary. I guess this reflects your sense of self-importance.

  69. First you are Sam.

    Second, nobody can refute you because you don’t post facts. Only blather and made up shit. “Various estimates”, “city official say” etc.

  70. Exactly correct. The problem with 48 hills is not the comments; it’s that the arguments in the articles often don’t hold up well to scrutiny. The problem with the comments is that progressives tend to dismiss anyone who disagrees with them as trolls, shills, or Republicans.

  71. In other words, you are intolerant of diverse viewpoints

    Got it. Nobody reads your FB page. Lots of people read 48Hills because Tim, for all his biased flows, appreciates the value of free speech and lively criticism.

  72. I feel certain that Tim considers himself to be a professional journalist. And I believe he has the skills to do real journalism, rather than biased puff pieces.

    You ether start from a position of wishing to genuinely discover the truth OR you start out with the conclusion you want to offer and then cherry-pick the “facts” to support your conclusion.

    The latter is not real journalism. It is marketing.

  73. Says Greg, who repeats the same hopeless socialist cliches at every opportunity. Accusing others of predictability and repetition is a tad rich coming from you. You are trolling our entire nation.

    And your inability to address the points I made earlier remains noted.

  74. You don’t debate, Sam. You troll. Repeating the same tired talking point 1000 times doesn’t equal “refuting” someone. Go ahead, have the last word.

  75. The usual bought-and-paid-for troll bullshit that makes these comments sections useless and unreadable, I post the article links to my FB page with a recommendation that anyone with a brain in their head avoid the “comments” – unless they’re looking for a laugh.

  76. This is a blog, and as such is opinion and not objective journalism. To find that locally online, I’d start with The Mercury as SFGate has recently been taken over by PopSugar and is unreadable in it’s currant incantation.

  77. Doubtful. Lee will be re-elected with a landslide majority. Why would he fear a has-been dried-up nobody, even assuming AP can win, which isn’t at all clear.

    Try again in 2019 with a progressive candidate who can defeat Wiener.

  78. Except that most everything and everyone for whom Tim advocates loses, so Tim is not very good at advocacy journalism.

    Perhaps that is why the losers Tim promotes close ranks around him?

  79. Greg, the usual throwaway lines you use whenever you have been refuted.

    At least try and debate your corner rather than capitulate so easily without a fight

  80. Ed “38%” Lee clearly fears Peskin, otherwise he would not have issued the ethically challenged threats to withhold discretionary approvals and contracts from anyone supporting Aaron.

  81. There are only two ways to do journalism. Objective journalism or advocacy journalism.

    Tim does the latter. There is no pretence of objectivity. He skews everything to make his side look good.

  82. Campos has nowhere to go, in much the same way as Peskin, Daly and Gonzalez had nowhere to go. Mirk will soon experience the same thing.

    Once branded a loser, it’s done.

  83. This is not journalism, it is cheerleading.

    The more the team loses, the louder the cheers.

    When the team is about to win, the cheering stops.

  84. Has Campos just completely checked out like Ammiano did at the end of his terms?

    Does SEIU really carry any coat tails amongst SEIU members and other union members?

    Isn’t Sandy Fewer a minion of Enrique Pearce?

    Preston would be a good candidate, he’s got the Alamo Square mansion to host fundraisers although his home is not as spectacular as the one Doug Engemann just sold.

  85. Same old boilerplate talking points, Sam. Repeating them 1000 times doesn’t make them true. You’re up pretty late. Are they paying you overtime, or did they relocate you to a closer timezome?

  86. Every incumbent gradually loses popularity. It is much easier to be popular when you are a challenger or newly elected on some hopey-changey platform, than when you have been in office for a few years making the tough decisions that turn some people off. Just ask Obama.

    And even if Lee’s approval were in the 45%-50% range, as some progressives like to believe, that is still pretty good for someone who has served for over 4 years. Remember how Agnos and Jordan both lost after one term? It’s tough when the buck stops with you.

    Also, you greatly exaggerate these alleged “problems” with housing and “inequality”. Most SF residents have housing which is nicely Prop 13’ed or rent-controlled into a historical cost. It’s the newcomers who find the cost of housing tough, and since when has any progressive cared about newly-arriving tech workers?

    While “inequality” is a non-issue when lots of people have well-paying jobs here. The fact that someone else is worth billions doesn’t bother anyone who isn’t consumed with envy. SF is a lot more “unequal” than Detroit, and not many would want to swap places just to be less preciously “unequal”.

    Progressives aren’t running against Lee because people like Ammiano and Campos have both lost locally already, and do not wanted to be branded “loser” again. If Campos cannot even win the east-side, he is doomed city-wide. While the last time Ammiano ran for mayor, he came 4th.

  87. There’s a saying at Daily Kos: A poll can be crap, but the polls rarely are. With Ed Lee, you have an unmistakable trend: the more people know, the less they like. Approval ratings have gone from 70% at election, to the low 60s in the second year, to the mid 40s in the third year, and now to the upper 30s. Progressives are making a huge mistake in not challenging him. A huge opportunity is being lost, because if the problems with housing and inequality continue (and they almost certainly will), Ed Lee will be very vulnerable by election day to a credible challenge.

  88. This is not 48Hills’s poll. He’s mentioning in passing a poll number published in the Chron, which gives more details. When 48 Hills published a poll they commissioned on Lee’s approval ratings last summer, they gave the standard details. BTW, that poll (on 8/8/14) gave Lee a 45% approval rating. KPIX had a poll in December which gave Lee 47% approval.

  89. Of course, but the important thing is to provide the background that Jon cited, and to acknowledge the inherent bias that invariably introduces.

    There is a disconnect here. Every other poll I have seen has Ed Lee with an easy and consistent 60% to 65% approval rating. Which of course is why progressives are scared to run against him. So the poll Tim has cherry-picked looks like an outlier. Its source maybe explains the error.

  90. From the Chronicle article that Tim linked to:

    “The phone poll of 569 voters by Public Policy Polling taken April 2-5 — and paid for by former Mayor Art Agnos aide Larry Bush and his Friends of Ethics”

    If a poll was paid for by The CofC or Ron Conway then Tim would be sure to tell everyone that it was therefore circumspect. When the poll is paid for by a member of the Progressive Agnos camp then….well, no need to question it, I guess.

    And certainly no need to mention who paid for it, what the question was or how Lee’s figures compared to other city institutions.

    So why DO progressives have a make believe journalist?

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