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Uncategorized Election night: Turnout, predictions ....

Election night: Turnout, predictions ….

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… and why wouldn’t Ed Lee pose with Broke-Ass Stuart today?

Broke-Ass Stuart wanted to pose with the mayor, but Ed Lee slipped away
Broke-Ass Stuart wanted to pose with the mayor, but Ed Lee slipped away

By Tim Redmond

NOVEMBER 3, 2015 – I was hoping some of the homeless people who inhabit mid-Market would show up for a free lunch today and have a word or two with the mayor and his pal Ron Conway, but that didn’t seem to happen. It was mostly the kind of crowd you would expect for an Election Day lunch – elected officials, candidates, activists, lobbyists, reporters, the gang of men and women who inhabit the world of SF politics on a daily basis.

It was nice of John’s Grill to host, along with Willie Brown, Sup. London Breed and lobbyist Alex Clemens.

C.W. Nevius was on hand. So were Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez, Julia Carrie Wong, and Chron editor Audrey Cooper, who noted that this time, John’s Grill was welcoming women.

Sup. Malia Cohen asked me what I was doing there. I guess I don’t count.

Broke-Ass Stuart was there, but Mayor Lee ducked away and wouldn’t pose for a picture with him. He walked away too fast. 

The talk was all about D3; Sup. Julie Christensen showed up for a couple of minutes but never went inside and made the rounds. Aaron Peskin was working on his GOTV efforts back in the district.

The overall prediction, from a wide range of people, not all of them in agreement on the race: Peskin’s looking like a winner.

We shall see in a few hours. It all depends on turnout.

Peskin supporters work to get out the vote in Chinatown
Peskin supporters work to get out the vote in Chinatown

I know that both sides are working hard on the “doorhanger wars,” on visibility, on reminding people that this is an Election Day. There are signs that it’s working – the return rate on mail ballots in D3 is up to 34 percent today, according to the Department of Elections.

But that’s 7,000 votes out of a total of 34,563 registered voters, so the overall turnout is still only around 20 percent.

The other prediction (again, not just for opponents of Mayor Lee): The mayor’s performance won’t be impressive. Despite having underfunded opponents, he may get fewer votes than anyone else on the top of the ticket. He’s not as popular as he was, and again, the consensus from the folks I talked to was that he could have been beaten if a prominent challenger had chosen to take him on.

I know why that didn’t happen – the mayor looked unbeatable eight months ago, and the threat that Conway and his gang would seek to attack and damage anyone who dared run was serious. But if Peskin wins, up against that assault, the message will be out there: Lee is not getting a mandate.

Meanwhile, turnout in the Mission is surprisingly high.

Polls are open until 8. Results will start to come in around 8:45. We will be following and analyzing as the story develops.

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.

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  31. “And no one can question his honest concern about the city’s present and future”

    What? Where were you during his reign? Your statement isn’t even accurate about his own neighborhood, let along the City. The guy is all about power. And he’s already sold out on the Flower Mart…wait and see.

  32. He’s winning against an incumbent, which is usually a much tougher race. Next November he likely won’t even face a serious challenger. It certainly won’t be Julie C. If she can’t win as an incumbent with the mayor’s over-the-top support, she won’t do any better next year. Aaron seems fairly beloved by many segments in the city and he’s one of the smarter, savvier legislators on the progressive side. And no one can question his honest concern about the city’s present and future, which is one of the most important litmus tests for voters. I’d bet on the team of Aaron, Jane, John, David, Eric and Leland against Mayor Lee and his out-of-touch minions and plutocrat supporters any day.

    As I say, I’d consider Ed Lee a lame-duck mayor. If anyone wants something done in the city over the next few years out of the ordinary, they better go though the supervisors or it may not get done. Props F and I may be losing tonight, but they’ll morph into something almost as effective within the next couple of months. Receiving 40% of the vote on controversial ballot measures is a strong statement by the community that something needs to be done about both issues. If the supervisors make progress on these two issues and develop much higher affordability percentages in new housing developments while stemming the torrent of tenant and small-business displacements, I’d say Aaron Peskin is the front-runner for the mayor’s race in 4 years. He’ll at least be one of the most powerful politicians until then. I hope Willie Brown is getting a good laugh tonight knowing that his “friend” will be supplanting him as the city’s main “go-to” person. And I hope WB can hang on for a few more years to watch Aaron’s ascension to Room 200.

  33. I guess he’ll just have to let out a long sigh from the comfort of his $2+ million home in the Haight, and move on.

  34. Problem being that Prop I and F were “good, progressive legislation” that appears to be getting smacked down by the voters. F might pull through in a squeaker.

    Peskin is better at identifying and homing in on political sweet spots that often coincide with progressive priorities.

    But all Kawa has to do is threaten critical junctures of the nonprofit bucket brigade and support from “progressive” supervisors melts away.

    They have nothing to fear from housing activists.

  35. Sure, that’s what Peskin is counting on but he can’t do much to rock the boat in a year, or he’ll be cooked for the 2016 election

    …. unless Rose promised him an Ed lee scandal once he returns as Board president, which would vault him to the Mayors office.

  36. If Aaron Peskin wins tonight, which seems likely after the first limited release of absentee ballots that tend to run more conservative, the city’s current political tilt could change even more dramatically than after the 2000 elections when it was Tom Ammiano who led the transformation. There would be six fairly reliable votes for progressive legislation, along with strong groups of activists who want significant changes in the city’s direction. 2016 could become a touchstone year in the city’s politics when you add in a lame-duck mayor, a state legislative race between two current supervisors, and very critical races in the odd-numbered districts.

    Presumably Supervisors Avalos and Campos have remaining legislative changes they’d like to see enacted before they leave the main stage next year. If Mayor Lee uses his veto power to upend good, progressive legislation, he’s likely to become even more alienated from the city’s lawmakers and electorate, reducing his influence on next year’s supervisor races. The next Board President could become as influential as the mayor with their ability to appoint strong legislative advocates to key committees.

    With activist populations in both the East Bay and SF facing many of the same housing, land-use, inequality and displacement issues, it should be an interesting year to follow local political developments.

  37. The problem is that Lee turns the screws on one of Kim, Campos, Mar or even Avalos’ nonprofits and Aaron all of a sudden can’t count to six.

  38. I was about to agree with your wholeheartedly until you mentioned the ring at your door to offer you voting assistance. That’s….odd.

    I’m also having trouble getting the coordinated Chinatown parades with slogans about his beard.

    …but yeah, not sure about his supporters enthusiasm, but you’re right, he’s been calm.

  39. Peskin did something I didn’t think he could do – he ran a very calm campaign. And his social media presence was excellent.

    Tonight, there are Christensen supporters on the corner with signs, cheering at cars going by (instead of engaging pedestrians). A Peskin campaign worker just rang my bell to ask if needed any assistance to vote, and when I replied that I voted, he crossed my name off his list.

    Organization and engagement vs cheering at cars. This is why the race is so close.

  40. Exactly. They even printed signs…and put them on sticks. Then stuck people in Noe, Inner Sunset, West Portal, etc. holding said signs on said sticks. It’s..weird.

  41. It really has been a wildly unfocused campaign. I think it sums up her abilities as a Supervisor too, sadly.

    I wonder if there was an insider reason she didn’t really go after Peskin like she could have.

  42. Appointees have a harder time of it. Olague self-destructed by voting to re-instate Mirk, and Julie may have misjudged her constituency as well.

    That said, I think Peskin is a throwback and not a positive move for the people who live there. I don’t really care either way, any more than you care about Wiener. And Peskin will provide some amusement, especially after he hits the sauce

  43. And you claim that I’m not civil.

    Let me say this another way: If Christensen loses, it is because of her awful campaign. An otherwise popular incumbent who is well funded shouldn’t have this many problems. Julie did make a few gaffs, but I don’t think that was enough to sink her.

  44. Hmm, Tim, and why exactly would the leader and CEO of a world class city talk to a loser that calls himself “Broke Ass”?

  45. I have not paid any attention to the D3 race as it does not concern me. But you seem way too obsessed with it, and I worry that you might harm yourself or others if it doesn’t go the way you so desperately want it to go

  46. Mirk is certainly toast, no question.

    Can’t see I passing

    F might but it would be very depressing that the people of this city want to invade the homes of those very same people. It will be widely ignored.

    Lee winning is a no brainer

    I hope A loses but it might just squeak it.

  47. My post isn’t about liking or not liking Christensen. 5 months ago I would never have guessed that this race would be so close.

    But her campaign sucked. These things (marketing, public opinion) interest me and my assessment is of her campaign is based upon what I’ve seen, not who I support in this race.

    Did you see her television commercial? Did it convince you of anything?

  48. Yes, Gary, we get that you don’t like Julie. Mostly because you have told us 10,000 times.

    But hey, D3 has to go through this all again next year, so you can tell us another 10,000 times.

  49. If Christensen loses, it is because of the worst campaign I’ve seen in ages.

    Her television commercial was a joke – I’m guessing she didn’t let professionals do it without her input. It was crafted as if the target audience was the ‘indy film crowd’, but most of them are voting for Peskin. It seemed as if Christensen’s “design background” interfered with those who understand marketing and messages. I’m sure other demographic groups didn’t have a clue as to what the commercial was about.

    Also her social media presence was awful.

    But it all comes down to her attitude and ego. A neighbor had an interesting encounter with her this week. Every time my neighbor tried to discuss important (to my neighbor) issues, Christensen got defensive and snippy. My neighbor is really polite, a political moderate, and she seemed really offended by Christensen.

  50. LOL, Tim, so if Lee wins but so does Peskin, then Lee has no mandate?

    You do realize, surely, that the voters of D3 do not represent the entire city? Nor the mandate you crave?

    If Lee wins, and he obviously will, then he has a mandate. But more importantly, he has the power. “Mandate” is a word used by losers to claim that they didn’t really lose.

  51. It’s a zoo out. Even the City College folks have volunteers with signs, hustling for votes.
    Can’t recall an election half as obnoxious.

  52. i predict that peskin will eke out a win, ross will be ousted by a large margin, airbnb’s money spree will pay off, and the rest of the measures will pass, except prop i, which i can’t figure out. the gut says it fails, but the gut said “no wall” would fail too, so i’ll go with the brain and say it narrowly passes.

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