Saturday, October 31, 2020
Uncategorized How the 2016 races shape up

How the 2016 races shape up

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Control of the city, and its future, on the line in a year of high-octane, high-stakes politics

 

Hillary Ronen, Sandy Fewer, and Kimberly Alvarenga would be three progressive women on the Board of Supes
Victories by Hillary Ronen, Sandy Fewer, and Kimberly Alvarenga would add three progressive women to the Board of Supes

By Tim Redmond

DECEMBER 4, 2015 – The next 11 months are going to be a whirlwind of political activity in San Francisco, with control of the city – and potentially its political future – at state.

The addition of Aaron Peskin to the board gives the progressives a sometimes-if-shaky six-vote majority, but only for a year: Six seats are up on the Board of Supervisors, and three of the most progressive members are termed out.

A high-profile state Senate race will send one supe to Sacramento – and possibly set that person up to run for higher office when Mayor Lee is termed out and Rep. Nancy Pelosi decides to retire.

The first round of the Senate race between Scott Wiener and Jane Kim will come in June – at the same time that progressives will have a chance to take back the local Democratic Party, which is now controlled by real-estate interests.

Add races for School Board and Community College Board during a presidential election year and we’re talking big opportunities to establish new leadership.

Here’s how things are shaping up right now:

With Sups. John Avalos, David Campos, and Eric Mar leaving because of term limits, three seats that have been in solid progressive hands will be up for grabs. So a lot of attention will be focused on Districts 1, 9, and 11.

Incumbent Sup. London Breed, who typically votes with the more moderate camp, will face a strong progressive challenger.

There are already reports that Sup. Norman Yee, who often votes with the progressives while representing a conservative district, could face a challenge.

And I have heard that Ron Conway is actively recruiting candidates to challenge Peskin.

 

In District 1, campaign consultant Marjan Philhour has already raised more than $100,000, which makes her a serious candidate although she has never run for or held political office. David Lee, who teaches at SF State and was the force behind the unsuccessful Prop. E this fall, is widely considered a possible candidate.

Both would be part of the moderate-to-conservative camp on the board.

Progressives at this point are urging School Board Member Sandy Fewer to enter the race. An Asian woman who has strong ties to the district and has won two citywide races, Fewer would be a formidable candidate. She told me this week that she is “seriously, seriously” considering it.

D1 is something of a swing district that for 16 years has had (generally) progressive representation. Jake McGoldrick came is as part of the anti-Willie-Brown Class of 2000; Mar, also a former School Board member, followed him.

It will be hard to keep a six-vote progressive majority without winning D1.

 

I hear that Conway is trying to find someone with the money and profile in D3 to take on Peskin, who only won the right to finish out Julie Christensen’s term, which ends next year. Good luck with that – it will be very, very tough to beat an incumbent Peskin.

 

Tenant lawyer and advocate Dean Preston, who is building the first serious statewide advocacy group for renters, Tenants Together, is planning to challenge Breed in D5. Ousting an incumbent is always tough, and Breed – the board president — will have the strong support of the mayor and most likely the real-estate industry and Conway. But Preston also has a long track record in the city, and can raise money. And with affordability the top issue in the city, and this district, he will be a contender.

D5 is a majority tenant district, and in the past has been one of the most left-leaning districts in the city. Twice, the voters put in office members of the Green Party (Matt Gonzalez and Ross Mirkarimi, who later become a Democrat). Breed has had a mixed record on tenant issues (she voted for the Mission Moratorium and Eviction 2.0, but opposed stricter rules on Airbnb. She tried to amend the Campos Ellis Act bill.) The Tenants Union will almost certainly support Preston, as will most of the progressive groups in town.

 

Norman Yee represents D7, one of the most conservative districts in town, but has voted with the progressives fairly often. On a lot of those issues (like Airbnb), his district is with him – short-term rentals aren’t at all popular on the West Side. And he has a long track record as a School Board member and supervisor.

He’s also a district-elections kind of guy, with small-business roots and a longtime connection to the neighborhood. And his voting record is hardly radical left.

The BAR reports that DCCC member Joel Engardio – a conservative on most major issues – is thinking about a run. He would attract landlord money, but doesn’t have a lot of roots in the district. I don’t see Yee losing unless something unusual happens.

 

District 9 will be a battlefield. The Mission has changed a lot since David Campos took office eight years ago. More than 8,000 Latino families have been forced out. That’s created tremendous new activism – but also a change in the demographics of the community. So far, the new tech workers aren’t voting much, and Bernal Heights (with a lot of homeowners) and the Portola haven’t seen quite as much transformation.

Campos aide Hillary Ronen, a lawyer who formerly worked for La Raza Centro Legal, has filed to run, and is actively raising money. Edwin Lindovice president for external affairs at of the Latino Democratic Club, just announced his candidacy.

The big concern here for what was always a progressive district (Tom Ammiano then Campos) is Josh Arce, who works with the Laborer’s Union and has been, frankly, a terrible vote on the DCCC, an ally of the police union  against Black Lives Matter and a friend of the real-estate industry and Airbnb.

Arce is ambitious, and he’s going to run. He’s going to have big money. He’s going to be part of what I expect will be a big independent-expenditure effort by Ron Conway and the gang. And he would radically change the representation of D9, shifting that progressive vote toward the center-right.

So this also will be a major battlefield. Ronen starts with a huge advantage: She has the endorsements of Campos and Tom Ammiano, who are by far the most popular political figures in the district. But it won’t be easy.

 

Ahsha Safai, who failed in his last bid for D11 supervisor, is running again. The last time around, as the Bay Guardian noted, he ran

without answering questions about his padded political resume of short-lived patronage jobs, greatly exaggerated claims of his accomplishments, history as a predatory real estate speculator, connections to and coordination with downtown power brokers, shifting and contradictory policy positions, or the many other distortions this political neophyte is offering up to voters in District 11.

Safai has worked for some labor groups, and there’s a move among some in the Labor Council to shift support in his direction. That would case a gigantic split between labor and the rest of the progressive movement – tenant groups, for example, are seriously concerned about a candidate who in 2008 took money from every bad real-estate group around, including a donation from Thomas Coates, who was in the process of trying to repeal rent control statewide.

Even Gavin Newsom wouldn’t take money from Coates. Safai did.

Kimberly Alvarenga, who was chief of staff to Tom Ammiano when he was in the state Assembly, is likely to file in the next few weeks. She’s currently political director for SEIU Local 1021, and the progressive side of labor in the city will absolutely side with her.

Another key swing district, another place where progressives will have to invest a lot of time and effort.

 

Then there’s the state Senate race.

Thanks to the crazy “top two” rules in California, Kim and Wiener will face off twice – once in the June primary, where both will emerge way ahead of any Republican, and then again in November.

With the new term-limits law, the winner could spend the next 12 years in Sacramento. Or, of course, the winner could do what state legislators have been fairly good at doing (George Moscone, Art Agnos, Willie Brown) and come back and run for mayor.

Kim has not always voted with the progressives (see: Twitter tax break) but has been a pretty solid part of the left bloc on the board. Wiener’s allies are already attacking her, and this race will be expensive and ugly.

Both are ambitious, effective politicians. Kim has won twice citywide, as a School Board candidate; Wiener has the support of incumbent Mark Leno.

Overall, the progressives will be likely be supporting four strong women candidates – Fewer, Ronen, Alarenga, and Kim. Three are women of color. That’s a positive advance for a movement that has been (justly) criticized for being dominated by men.

To add to the intrigue: Mayor Lee will get to appoint someone to replace either Wiener or Kim, and that person will have to face the voters at the next election. Given his track record, the mayor might want to think about finding a candidate the community actually supports.

Round One begins long before November: The Democratic Party has been in the hands of the real-estate industry, and in June, every single seat on the DCCC is up. There are no limits on campaign contributions for DCCC, and candidates for other offices have often used their DCCC campaigns as a way to raise money and create visibility while they’re running for other offices.

The winners in June will vote on the Party’s endorsements in November. There will be a battle royal here.

The turnout in a presidential year will be high. Whether it’s Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton (and all those “Hillary” signs would help Ronen in D9), the GOP crew is so horrifying that upwards of 60 or 70 percent of San Franciscans will show up to defeat the Republican nominee.

That makes the DCCC endorsement more important. It also tends to help the progressives, although it leaves room for mischief by landlord-backed candidates who claim to be Democrats.

Take a deep breath: It’s going to be a big year.

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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  35. Kim is not known in D11, she has been inactive in the neighborhood up until November, and is going into this with the support of a supervisor who is widely disliked in his District.

    Francisco Herrera just entered and will split the progressive vote. I may disagree with Francisco, but at least he did not become active in the District just to suit his political goals.

    I am a lifelong resident of D11, I am very active politically, and I, as the vast majority of my neighbors, will be supporting Ahsha Safai. Ahsha has been active in the neighborhood groups for 8 years and he is raising his family out here. Out of the current candidates in the race, he is by far the best choice.

  36. I think you underestimate the impact that a real populist presidency (as opposed to the fake populism of Donald Trump) would have on the whole political process. The only real economic populist president we ever had was FDR, and it drove the biggest realignment to the Democratic Party that the country has ever seen, and it lasted for a generation.

    Now Bernie’s somewhat to the right of FDR, but still, people will see that the policies work and suddenly you’ll get a whole different kind of political environment. Don’t worry, though. The establishment will never let him win.

  37. I am not a liberal, and Hillary is not preferable to Republicans on the issues I care about. There is no way in hell I would vote for Hillary.

    Lieberman is a slimy backstabbing narcissistic piece of human garbage. He is the absolute opposite of courage and integrity. Seriously, I think you’re just trying to rile me up by saying something like that.

    OK… so what about Fidel Castro? Even if you do not agree with him, do you at least respect his courage and integrity?

  38. If Ron Conway wasn’t able to dig up dirt to defeat him this time (even with a million or so in negative ads), it isn’t likely to happen in 2016.

  39. Joel Engardio ran in D7 in 2012 and came in 4th in first place votes with about 4,100, 5000 votes behind Yee.

    He got the Chron’s endorsement and probably would get it again. He’ll have the support of SFBARF this time (which his group Plan C/SF Moderates helped create and he has written about in his SF Examiner column).

    There will be fewer candidates, but Yee is an incumbent.

    And then there is this (he also wrote a similar column later for the examiner)

    http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/openforum/article/Are-San-Franciscans-addicted-to-rent-control-4678260.php

  40. Gore didn’t “lose fair & square” -he lost due to lack of confidence!

    Sure, in part to Nadar. But he could have overcome NH but simply demanding a FULL recount in FL. He tried to parse the sweet spots of Dade etc, and when that didn’t go as planned he was screwed.

    If he’d simply said “I don’t trust this FL process – count every vote one more time”, he’d have been #43. Perhaps 9/11 might have been different too.

  41. I felt the same way 8 yrs ago. Instead (can’t really say ‘thankfully’), someone else got elected. But it was a ‘Dem’-year. And I certainly wasn’t going to vote for ‘her’.

    This time, I wouldn’t call it a ‘Dem-year’; its pretty much up in the air. There is strong populist sentiment (Trump, Bernie). I’ve reconciled myself to H; the nepotism is still there, but flanked by experience. Sure, still backed by WS; but with enuf cunning to possibly, possibly be able to buck its more extreme demands. She’s certainly better than any of the Rs. Bernie will simply lead the voters to make all three branches Republican.

    Sad. But. True.

  42. Lieberman showed courage when he stood up against the so-called “public option” of ObamaCare. You may not agree with that but do you at least not respect his courage and integrity?

    And even if Gore, Kerry, Obama and Clinton are too right-wing for you, can you not understand why they are still preferable to the GOP choices? At least if you are a liberal, which I assume.

  43. Alternatively, Gore could have chosen a better VP, or done any one of a number of things that would have won over some progressives. The Democrats are still deluding themselves, blaming everyone else for their bad decisions. From the looks of it, they haven’t learned a thing. They’re about to nominate the odious and thoroughly unelectable Hillary Clinton.

  44. It is not so much about advancing individuals, they’re terribly bad at it if that’s what they’re up to. No, this is about protecting the interests of a small set of nonprofits, and if needed, by sacrificing everything else on the table to the neoliberals.

    This is why they are trying to resuscitate the Guardian’s useful parts, the awards that sell ads and the endorsements that help the nonprofits at the polls.

  45. Do not give up on District 9. Even in my family’s relatively small social circle, I see a huge number of folks here who are enraged by the corruption, incompetence, and destructive policies of David Campos. We support jobs, technology and other creative businesses, homeowners, the middle class, gentrification, new and improved restaurants and businesses, and cleaning up our streets. We oppose excess property taxes, excess regulation, crime, illegal aliens, litter, graffiti, and bums. We support equality before the law and development; we oppose the oppression of homeowners, landlords, and the middle class.

  46. Please, please, please run for District 9 supervisor Josh Arce. Anyone is better than David Campos, but we also deserve someone better than a Campos acolyte. A lot of District 9 families are energized to vote for anyone who opposes David Campos policies that have neglected and weakened middle class homeowners and allowed blight to continue in the neighborhood. David Campos is literally the worst supervisor this City as ever seen (except for Dan White). Many of us volunteered for No on F and No on I, despite having extremely busy schedules and having never volunteered in the past. The rank and file citizens of District 9, whether in the Portola, Bernal Heights, or, yes, the Mission are here to donate time and money to improving our City and our neighborhoods. While many trendy so-called “progressive” voters do not understand the issues; the folks who actually care about our City are here. We fought for David Chiu, we fought to defeat the existential threat to San Francisco values posed by Props F and I, and we will fight for you.

  47. Yes a certain percentage would probably not have voted at all.
    But Bush won by about 9000 votes, so I believe that, without Nader, if enuf voters would have selected Gore, he could and would have won New Hampshire, and the electoral college.

  48. Pete, I doubt that you or anyone can convince Greg that Gore didn’t lose fair and square. He is too personally vested in his rationalization of defeat.

    When the left wins an election, it is the voice of the people and the inexorable march of international socialism. When the left loses, the election was stolen, bought, manipulated or otherwise misappropriated.

    But the 2000 election has given us years of free entertainment as liberals and progressives endlessly whine and bleat. So we really should not discourage them.

  49. It took a while for me to understand how much of the SF progressive party line isn’t even really about advancing a specific agenda, but about advancing their own people. I mean, I guess it should’ve been unsurprising, but still.

  50. No, most likely they would have not voted for anyone. I decided not to vote for Al Gore when he chose Joe Lieberman as his VP. After that there was no way I would vote for Gore. You insult progressives if you think that taking away their choices would somehow make them vote for your guy.

  51. Preston could be a strong influence. He’s already been holding Tenant outreach workshops this year (you know, to ‘help’ tenants) Look at how Breed is already positioning herself (not supporting Weiner on the Roommates deal) to cover her rear re:Preston.

    Preston is backed by Randy Shaw. It would be abhorrent to allow Shaw to control not only D6 but D5 as well; the Berkeley Hills are already overrepresented.

    Plus I’m curious. Tenants-Together, the statewide tenant org, has been gaining ground recently, and stands to exert much more power than at City Hall. I wonder if Preston is really serious about D5, or if its simply a way to apply pressure on the incumbant .

  52. A key principle of local progressivism is a variation on the white man’s burden, i.e. that poor non-whites are weak and need to be saved by white progressive males.

    Even if that means trying to unseat a local black woman by a privileged white male.

  53. Is that true about Dean? That’s an outrage! I’m so sick of Progressives’ white male leadership constantly telling people of color, “get out of the way. We know what’s best for you and you’re not capable of making decisions for yourselves.”

  54. So Alvarenga went from chief of staff to Tom Ammiano when he was in the state Assembly, to political director for SEIU Local 1021. Talk about being in the Union’s pocket. Jesus.

  55. the Board of Supervisors approve or disapprove the collective bargaining agreements of public sector employees – yes, they are elected

  56. you don’t believe in libraries because you may have to see actual people who don’t fit your demographic

  57. That was not an “attack”.

    I am merely shedding light on the fact that coppers in SF are grossly overpaid and over-pensioned, to the detriment of us all.

    …and also ridiculing your ridiculous posturing, deary.

  58. I’d prefer a voucher system. More choice. I also support charter schools. But I am happy with the school my kids attend. It is extremely high quality, the other kids and parents are great and contribute/help a lot, and there is very little political correctness in the curriculum.

  59. I vote “No” on all bond measures anyway. I do not single out education.

    I would prefer a voucher system because I cannot get a refund on the part of my taxes that fund SFUSD. Nor can people with no kids, of course. But a voucher system would be cheaper for me and would help offset the cost of private education. It also promotes choice and means kids would not have to take cross-town buses because they are banned from attending a local school because of ideology.

    I think the mayor should produce the budget, as now, and the Supes invited to offer changes for review. I don’t see Peskin changing very much because Lee can veto what he doesn’t like, and the six “progressives” often disagree with each other anyway.

  60. So we could close all he public schools and give the money to parents in the form of vouchers. Would that suit you and meet your version of democracy?

  61. So does that mean that you vote against money for public education, and if so, how tight do you want to squeeze it? I think I know the answer to that question; you probably support vouchers for parents who opt out of the public education system. If so, I think I am correct in saying your support for democracy is conditional.

    I suspect your support for the Board of Supervisors will change when Peskin gets sworn in next week. And what about your support for Lee’s plan to cut the supes out of annual budget reviews of some departments? Is that consistent with your version of democracy? How about one decision maker for all jurisdictions throughout the U.S.? Would that be OK so long as this person is elected?

  62. No, I just forgot there were 9.

    Any comment on the substance of my comment that the SCOTUS decision changed nothing anyway?

  63. No, I mean 5. I understand the confusion, especially, if as some have said, you do your “work” from the UK. I wouldn’t expect you to know all the intricacies of American system, just as I don’t understand everything about the House of Lords. The American Supreme Court has 9 judges, which go by the rather Orwellian name “justices.” 5 of them voted for Bush -some of whom were appointed by his father, the former head of the American spy agency. The other 4 apparently didn’t want to participate in a coup.

  64. No, I said I was fine with SFUSD being elected and political, because I can always opt out of it.

    It would be like you living in, say, Texas, hating their politics, and so moving elsewhere.

  65. I see $am. Democracy is conditional with you. Your version is an old trope that you trot out when you think it suits your purposes. That trope is tired and worn out. No amount of changing logins is going to revive it.

  66. I assume you meant 6 there as Gore versus Bush lost 5-6.

    All SCOTUS did was deny an official recount. The recount happened anyway later on and revealed that the Bush majority was actually higher than the original count.

    So while the eventual recount could have turned out the other way, that turned out not to be the case. In other words the SCOTUS decision did not affect the result.

  67. I am willing for SFUSD to be democratically run. I am not willing to send any child of mine to one of their schools, however.

  68. They are run an elected board $am. Don’t you believe in democracy? Why are you not willing to tlet a democratically run school district educate your children?

  69. Italy is probably the model for what can go wrong wit PR.

    How did I know you’d be a conspiracy theorist on the 2000 election? Gee. Lefties are still whining about that 15 years later.

    It’s possible that Nader votes didn’t cost Gore the state because I never studied the recounts in detail, and there was the Buchanan factor as well. But many did allege that.

    But the subsequent recount showed that Bush’s majority was greater than the original count, and so the SCOTUS decision was endorsed by the facts.

  70. Obviously that is a personal decision for every parent. In our case, we deplore the allocation system and the overweaning political correctness in the current system.

  71. Why would I want that? I’m not an authoritarian. Coalitions are great when you have multiple opinions, as you do in the real world. Having a parliament entirely composed of one or two wishy-washy centrist parties that represent an “average” opinion is NOT the same as having a parliament of multiple diverse voices. In the latter, all issues are at least on the table, and get a wider audience. At its best, it could be a win-win for everybody.

    And btw, Nader didn’t cost Al Gore Florida. Al Gore won Florida. Florida, and the 2000 election, was stolen.

  72. Actually it’s insulting to the voters to tell them that they must be limited to two choices because you think they’re too stupid to consider more.

  73. i believe you have forgotten the City’s excellent librarians and nurses: their salaries are also set by the voters – and they do excellent work

  74. Well, transferable voting would probably have meant that the votes for Nader in 2000 would not have cost Gore Florida and therefore the presidency.

    PR is great for fringe parties like UKIP, the German Greens and the French National Front Party. But it leads to a lot of coalition governments. I would have thought you’d prefer a real chance of absolute power and the ability to implement a socialist agenda rather than a wishy-washy centrist consensus compromise government.

  75. Labels and stereotypes are for those who cannot think independently. The fact remains that the voters are unconcerned that we choose to pay our public safety workers well, and I say that as someone who is generally down on the pbublic sector.

  76. No, RCV isn’t completely random but it is an insult to the voters. People do not put as much thought into their 2nd & 3rd choices as they do their first. And now we want to go beyond 3rd place choices because of RCV’s “exhausted ballot” nightmare.

    When you leave the RCV booth you still don’t know who you voted for and who you voted against in the runoff (or if you even voted at all) and that’s wrong. A more elegant way would be to say “Hey, its either Lee or Avalos. Who’s better for you?”.

    And BTW, something like 75% of the voters in D10 left Malia Cohen completely off their ballot. They didn’t vote for her in any way shape of form. Only about 25% did, yet she was declared a winner with a majority, 50%+1 vote.

    So it isn’t random, but it is a sad joke.

  77. I can’t speak for all progressives. I can speak for myself, and I like it because it’s an elegant and logical way to hold a runoff. From my experience working on the campaign, that was the reason most of my fellow volunteers supported it.

    PR is even better, in terms of providing an accurate representation of voters’ opinions. The fairest system is probably mixed member PR like they have in New Zealand. But PR systems are not practical on a small board of 11.

  78. Fair enough. You’re entitled to your opinion. I think it’s an elegant and logical way to have a runoff, and voters agreed when it was put up for a vote. We disagree, and that’s fine. What I object to is that you make it sound like “anything can happen” as if it was some kind of wild random number generator. Nothing could be further from the truth.

  79. You know what, you’re right. I clearly do remember asking the question at a candidate forum, and I clearly remember her answer, however the timeline of my memory is faulty. The exchange took place some time after the 2003 election, and the question was “*did* he support prop H?”

    I appreciate the correction, but you don’t have to be sarcastic about it.

  80. On a personal level I like Dean and am more aligned with him politically, but kind of see his campaign as a non starter. The orgs that Tim named that are supporting him are not nearly powerful enough to unseat a daughter of the neighborhood who has very strong roots. It will be quite easy on London’s side to present her challenger as a wealthy homeowner who lives in a mansion on Alamo Square trying to oust a Black woman who grew up in public housing in the district. Last time when 1021 tried to paint London as a lover of landlords, it didn’t really work because her background refutes this. People care about tenant issues, especially in D5, but in spite of what many progressives think, most people who are renters are not single issue voters nor do they identify primarily as tenants.

    D11 is also concerning as Ahsha has also been campaigning for the past 8 years there. After losing, he basically tried to reshape himself in the image of Avalos, getting a job with the janitors union, producing children and trading in his newsom image for a more humble one etc. Beyond that, he has become tight with Dave Ho and will surely kick ass in the Asian Communities.

    If Sandy Fewer runs, that would be great and I think she will win.

  81. Yes, it is obscene. All public-sector workers, like for-profit CEOs, in California are on defined-benefit pension plans that guarantee 6-8% annual returns. They have pensions that are equivalent to about 80% of their annual salaries in their last year of employment (Hence Mr. Fewer gets $148K a year).

    I’d be fine with that…

    …except money that should be going into servicing the public has to get siphoned off instead into the pension pot.

    Jeff Adachi and Matt Gonzales understood that. Most other progressives don’t, unfortunately.

  82. Way back in 2003 you asked her about Prop H? Way back then, long before she ever ran for School Board, you were aware that she would one day run for public office? So you asked what her copper husband thought about Prop H?

    You are one prescient dude!

  83. I think public sector pay and benefits are too high, except for cops and fire. Muni in particular is egregiously overpaid – the cost per Muni journey in SF is around $10 a trip.

    My point is that I think people see public safety staff differently than other city workers. Indeed, I believe that everything the city does could be privatized, outsourced or terminated except for public safety, which is easily the most important legitimate activity for the public sector.

  84. >”Again, you’re showing that you’re completely ignorant about the process.”

    Again, you’re showing that you consider anyone who disagrees with you to be “completely ignorant”.

    I’m one of the many people, like Jerry Brown, who feels that the RCV simulation is a weak way to select our leaders. I’m well aware of how it works. I even realize that you don’t always get your second choice when your first is eliminated, because your second choice may have just gotten eliminated as well. When you are in something like the 2011 mayoral election and eliminating the Duftys, Chius, Hereras, etc that can make a huge difference.

    Which is just one reason why a lot of us are insulted by RCV, and why 98% of the country doesn’t even consider it.

    But hey, just call us “completely ignorant”. It’s easier for you and makes you feel a little better.

  85. RCV was fought for by progressives not because they thought it was fairer but because they thought they would get better outcomes. Some times that worked, like with Mirk the first time around for sheriff, and for the ill-fated Jean Quan in Oakland

    But as you know, it has also dashed the hopes of other progressives and denied Avalos the chance of a real runoff against Lee in 2011.

    And tactical voting is still possible with RCV so it can lead to quirky results, as is being suggested. But at least it is not as bad as PR.

  86. There is no difference. Tim says he welcomes all viewpoints here and I believe him over you.

    You presume that I am active in politics. I am not. I do not contribute, campaign or attend meetings. I am not a member of any party nor am I any kind of activist, advocate or protester.

    I enjoy debating such issues but mostly as an academic exercise. I find it rewarding that an amateur like me can win political against people who have decades of experience in politics.

    I have heard of Fewer’s name but up to this article didn’t know anything about her. Maybe if my kids were suffering in a SFUSD school I would hate her, but I took steps to avoid that risk long ago.

  87. Yes, because she was a lot of people’s second choice. There were no “manipulations.” It’s not some sort of black box that manipulates votes and comes out in random ways. The results are logical and entirely based on the preferences of the voters. Again, you’re showing that you’re completely ignorant about the process.

  88. My experience is different.

    And I see two, not one, non-progressive posters on this website alone in just the last 24 hours alone. Even though there are not that many non-progressive posters here who are not some incarnation of you.

    That’s because when people find out how much cops really make, the outrage unites progressives and non-progressives alike. Unfortunately most people don’t know, because ballot initiatives are purposefully structured so that real numbers are not discussed, and no politician ever gets up and says, “I want to pay a rookie cop fresh out of police academy $100,000.”

    Where I disagree with the posters, is that I think none of this should have any bearing on Fewer’s candidacy.

  89. >”Spoken like someone who is completely ignorant about how RCV works.”

    Spoken like an insecure twit who likes to make himself feel big by making statements without any basis.

    Nobody feels sorry for you….do some reading. Malia Cohen was in 4th place and became a Supervisor after 19 rounds of RCV manipulations.

  90. There is a difference between trolling and merely posting.

    I don’t go on sites that I disagree with for the purpose of stirring trouble.

    I don’t change my handle every couple weeks because I’ve worn out my welcome.

    I don’t cyberstalk other posters.

    And I’m not the one playing dumb and pretending that I don’t know who a longtime member of the SFUSD is.

  91. I saw one person complain about it. I never claimed that nobody in this city feels that way – only that it is a minority view according to all the evidence and experience I have.

  92. You troll all the time as well. I’ve seen posts from you from years ago. Criticizing me for posting a lot is a real pot-kettle thing.

    I don’t know Fewer because I don’t follow the politics of SFUSD. My kids attend private school as I refuse to deal with it. I can imagine what she is like but I don’t know for sure, and so am being charitable to her.

  93. Did you not read some of the other commentary on this board complaining about police pensions? These are not progressive posters.

  94. You’ve been trolling progressive sites literally for years, Sam. Your comments have taken up the lions’ share of the discussion sections in most of the articles posted here, under your various handles. You are simply not credible when you say you’re not familiar with Fewer.

  95. If those are the people that the voters want to see in charge, who are you to say they are the wrong people? Don’t you believe in democracy?

  96. Of course YOU hear people complaining about police pay because those are the waters you paddle in. But even you must admit that wallowing in progressive pondlife in this city is not likely to be representative.

    I’ve seen propositions that are purely for public safety workers

  97. I am no more predictable on police issues than you. I tend to support them almost all the time, just like you rarely support them.

    I believe that progressivism is at the heart of most things that are wrong with SF, so of course I criticise them. What else would you expect? Your mindless kneejerk socialism is no less predicable.

    But for now I give Fewer the benefit of the doubt because I am not familiar with her and, whatever she has done, it has not been significant enough to have causes me to dislike her. In fact, it is only the fact that you seem to like her that causes me to be doubtful of her suitability to serve

  98. Like the ones who voted for Ed Lee and the “moderates” on the BOS? Yes, they are paragons of financial responsibility. Can you name one member of the city pension board who was elected by city voters?

  99. I’ve seen ballot initiatives about city worker pensions.

    We elect people who make those decisions and appoint those who do.

    I hear plenty of people complaining about how we pay cops (who incidentally have less risky jobs than sanitation workers). Case in point… some of the other right-leaning posters right here on this board who are not reflexive authoritarian trolls.

  100. Scott Walker is not a liberal but he is elected by the good people of Wisconsin which is usually a liberal state. It is also an educated state.

    So perhaps Scott is the thinking liberal’s idea of a good libertarian?

  101. Regardless of who actually decides, they are either elected or appointed by those we elect

    So if you are not happy with the outcome, you can only blame the voters.

  102. Politicians may emphasize different things to different audiences, present their views differently, change their views over time; but telling some people “I support it” and telling others “I oppose it” in the same election cycle would be too blatant of a contradiction to get away with for very long.

    You defer to the police always without exception, so your views have no credibility. Your authoritarianism is so obvious that even changing your handle every few weeks can’t hide who you are.

    Don’t play dumb. You’ve never said a kind word about progressives in your life. Of course you have an opinion about Fewer. She’s progressive so you hate her. Your views are well known enough that you can’t pretend to be unbiased at this point. Even if you change your handle, your style and mannerisms are transparent.

    I do agree with you about her husband, but for a different reason. In my case it’s out of principle; in yours it’s because you worship law enforcement without question.

  103. No imagining allowed. Who sets the pensions and who appoints them? An important issue, considering some of the poor decisions made here, like losing many millions on hedge fund investments. In any event, it appears they are not “elected.”

  104. I would imagine that it starts with the mayor and the supervisors, along with those they appoint or hire.

    What process would you like to see instead?

  105. Wisconsin is not a right-wing state. Didn’t they vote for Clinton, Gore and Obama in recent general elections?

  106. This view is common among right-wingers. Note that public safety unions were exempted from Wisc. Gov. Scott Walker’s drive to limit collective bargaining by public employees.

  107. Politicians lie all the time. They tell different people different things according to the audience. You surely cannot be naive enough to believe otherwise.

    You have “no problem” with cops who defer totally to those who seek to undermine them. You criticize the police far too often to try and play nice with them now with any credibility.

    I don’t have an opinion about Fewer at this point, but her husband should not be a factor either way.

  108. I’ve seen plenty of ballot initiatives that are about fire and police pensions.

    And we elect the people who make those decisions or appoint those who do.

    I rarely hear anyone complaining about how we pay those who risk their lives to serve and protect, apart from those with an anti-police bias.

  109. The voters don’t set the pay and benefits of the police any more than they set the benefits of other city workers.

  110. I’m not anti-police. I’m defending a cop here, after all. I have no problem with police who respect citizens’ civil rights and support civilian oversight.

    But that’s beside the point. You can’t be a public figure and lie about something like that to one person while presumably saying something else to another, and not have it catch up with you.

  111. Maybe they told you what they knew you wanted to hear? It’s not like your anti-police views are a big secret.

  112. I think you will find that most people want public safety workers and sworn officers to be well rewarded. After all, their pay and benefits are set by voters, those the voters elect and appointees thereof.

    It is the egregious pay and benefits of other city workers that is rightly under critical scrutiny.

  113. Yes, it is. The responsible decisionmakers for setting police salaries in this town need to be fired. I don’t know who they are, but I can tell you two people who had no role in those decisions:
    Sandra Fewer and her husband.

  114. I’m not too concerned about her police ties. There are tons of problems with the SFPD, but no one should be smeared just by association. Way back when she was running for school board, I asked her what her husband thought of Prop H, an important police reform measure on the ballot. “He supports it,” she told me, and then added, “So do I.” That told me all I needed to know. He’s one of the good ones. Very, very few cops supported Prop H; fewer still had the courage to say so publicly.

    And yes, they pay cops too much in this town. But neither Fewer nor her husband had a role in setting police salaries.

    Incidentally, this was 2003. If school board is just a stepping stone, it sure took her long enough to take that step!

  115. “something could shave a few points off his 2015 total and then you are into RCV land and anything could happen.”

    Spoken like someone who is completely ignorant about how RCV works.

  116. Tim as always writes political analysis based on with which political clique the principals associate.

    How about asking the candidates questions about policy matters instead of declaring someone progressive or not by association?

  117. A few observations:

    1. I just got a call from the same “research” company that Conway was using a lot to figure out how he could salvage Christensen from defeat. (They call me a lot probably because I answer. But then, it is interesting for me to try to figure out who is paying for the poll and what they are supporting.) The majority of questions were about the proposed 25% low/middle income affordable housing rule for new developments. By the questions asked, it seemed as if the survey sponsor was opposed to the proposed law.

    2. Aaron Peskin can make a name for himself and gain city-wide support if he takes on the SFMTA and Superbowl committee, to make the sponsors of the Superbowl celebrations pick up the tab on transportation costs, that, as of now will be paid for by the city.

  118. As a District 1’er, I hope we can get someone who focuses on ‘nuts & bolts’ issues; we need clean graffiti-free streets, road repairs, homeless controlled, enforcement of current laws that are being broken constantly like speed limit and in-law units. We want a healthy, beautiful neighborhood.

  119. Yes, the “future” of the city will be decided by the DCCC. Nothing else matters comrades – not the economy, not trade, not the fortunes of local companies – only the membership of an obscure organ of a political party which mainly exists to issue endorsements. Tim, do you really believe the crap you write?

  120. >”In that model he is more like Mirkarimi, another progressive that you could have near guaranteed to find some way to be self-destructive and fail.”

    Yeah, except that if Peskin got into a fight with his wife it would look like Holly Holm/Rhonda Rousey II….with Peskin being the one left in tears.

  121. Yes, Peskin is critically flawed. There is always a chance that some dirt will emerge, probably from one of the many people he pissed off in the past with his dirty tricks and tactics.

    In that model he is more like Mirkarimi, another progressive that you could have near guaranteed to find some way to be self-destructive and fail.

    Hardly a poster child for progressive idealism but, since Peskin was the only progressive bright spot in last month’s elections, I don’t blame the left for lionizing him a tad too much.

  122. I’m cautiously optimistic about Peskin.

    For all intents and purposes he was already the incumbent THIS year, with years of experience and name recognition.

    His opponent, while a fine person, was a completely naive newbie running in her first election and clearly did not have the temperament for the job. What was the benefit of saying that Jane Kim was faking the eviction stories????

    And only 52% of the people voted for Peskin

    Could be that by this time next year people will realize that Peskin did not have any magic fairy dust in his pocket that would make the city affordable, Plus he could get caught in some other lies and deception, like he did this year with the bicycle coalition.

    You’re dealing with a highly flawed individual….something could shave a few points off his 2015 total and then you are into RCV land and anything could happen.

    Keep your fingers crossed!

    Meanwhile, as a D3 resident I once again humbly apologize to the rest of the city for Peskin.

  123. Sandra Fewer will be taking the school-board-jump-to politics route used by so many.

    But her connections to the San Francisco Police Dept. should be raising concerns.

  124. 1, 7 and 11 are all vulnerable to a moderate win. Two of those are western districts which typically are more conservative, with a lot of Asians and homeowners. While D11 is low-income but not particularly ideological like D9.

    On the other hand D5 arguably has a supervisor who is more conservative then her constituency.

    D9 will stay leftie and I expect Peskin to prevail.

    On that analysis progressives are more vulnerable. But the wild card is that Lee gets to replace one of Lee or Wiener, and that could throw a 6-5 majority the other way.

    Can’t say I care about DCCC or school/college elections. I vote for the candidates with the strangest names or anyone who runs a small business.

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