UPDATED, VERSION #2–JUNE 5, 2018
CALIFORNIA PRIMARY RECOMMENDATIONS
Well, there is a whole lot on this June Primary ballot. Below, I will describe my thinking process, and, in some cases, I will make AN ENDORSEMENT, which will be in bold type and ALL IN CAPITAL LETTERS. In other matters, I will simply say for whom or for what I am voting. They will be recommendations, but NOT formal endorsements.
Office #4—VERONICA SAUCEDO
Office #20—I am voting for Wendy Segall, though Mary Ann Escalante is recommended by one person.
Office #63—Able Malcolm-Mackey
Office #67—Lucy Armendariz
Office #71—Danielle Gibbons
Office #113—Javier Perez
Office #118—I am voting for David Diamond, though one recommended Troy Davis
Office #126—RENE GILBERTSON
Office #146—ARMANDO DURON
(I consulted with progressive attorneys and judges on these recommendations. IF YOU HAVE A DIFFERENT OPINION, WRITE TO ME AND LET ME KNOW.)
STATEWIDE BALLOT PROPOSITIONS:
All five ballot Propositions were placed on the ballot by votes in the California State Legislature. Unlike Propositions placed on the ballot by voter signatures, these are usually NOT controversial to the Democrats who control both Houses of our legislature. There will be little opposition, and probably NO MONEY spent for or against any of them:
Proposition #68—YES. This measure will allow the State government to sell $4.1 billion in State Bonds for parks, water quality and supply, flood protection, and protection of natural resources. COSTS: this will cost the State budget about $200 million annually for the next 40 years, but it will most likely save local governments several tens of millions of dollars annually for the next few decades
who say that the projects are good but should not be paid for by increases to California debt.
Proposition #69—YES: This Constitutional Amendment requires fuel tax revenues passed by the 2017 fuel tax measure to be exclusively spent on transportation purposes such as fixing roads and bridges, and on transportation projects. There is no additional COST, and not direct effect on the amount of state and local revenues. Making this a constitutional amendment will make more difficult changing this in the future. Opposition is Republican only, and they say it fails to protect $1 billion, but I don’t see how.
Proposition #70—NO: In general, I oppose super majority vote requirements, 2/3 votes to pass legislation or a budget. So, this measure that would require a 2/3 vote to spend money generated from gas emission permits (cap and trade) beginning on January 1, 2024. The argument for this measure is that it will mean that both Parties will have to at least somewhat agree on what the money should be spent on, and that that will mean that the money is spent more wisely. I will probably vote NO on the measure as I do think this could lead to legislative gridlock, and so I join with the California League of Women Voters, and 35 environmental organizations in opposition to what is being described as an “industry-backed effort to weaken the state’s premier program to curb harmful air pollution and climate change.”
Proposition #71—no recommendation: I really don’t care whether a measure passed by the voters goes into effect five days after the Secretary of State certifies the election results, which means about six weeks after the measure passes, or if the measure becomes law the day after election day.
Proposition #72—YES: This measure would allow the legislature to permit construction of rain-capture systems completed after January 1, 2019 without requiring property-tax reassessment that might otherwise have been triggered by the expense of making these construction changes to property. There is no opposition, and the measure might encourage homeowners to buy and install rainwater recycling systems.
UNITED STATES SENATE: NO RECOMMENDATION Undoubtedly, I will not vote for Senator Feinstein. I do appreciate her releasing information from the Judiciary Committee when the GOP chair refused to do so. And I do support all her lifetime efforts to support women, the LGBT community (she voted against DOMA), reproductive choice and bans on assault weapons. However, Sen. Feinstein has been too much of a “hawk” on foreign policy and has been too much of the Party “centrist” for me to vote for her.
I may vote for Senator Kevin DeLeon, but I have not yet decided. He has certainly supported “single payer” healthcare, and has been an outstanding advocate for immigrants, both “legal” and those without papers. He is bright, enthusiastic, and remembers his own early life challenges in all he does. I most likely will vote for him, though I just have not decided yet what to do.
I will not endorse in the Primary in this race. I think there are four Democrats who have a chance to make an all Democrat run-off, and I am thinking I will make an endorsement after the Primary is over.
I love John Chiang! He was courageous when I was in the Assembly and when Schwarzenegger decided not to pay employees of the legislators and committee employees when we had no budget passed (this was when it required a 2/3 vote to pass a budget), Chiang defied the then Governor, and paid all but the elected officials because the other employees had no vote on the budget and could not change the outcome of the vote for the budget. John Chiang always attends events in every community, and he is quite progressive. HE DOES TAKE CORPORATE MONEY, however.
I love Gavin Newsome! When he authorized same-gender marriages in San Francisco, he moved the debate over Gay/Lesbian marriage quite a bit further along. He was roundly criticized for his effort, and he make waves that helped fuel the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on Lesbian/Gay marriage, making them legal throughout the nation. HE DOES TAKE CORPORATE MONEY, however.
I love Delaine Eastin! She may be easily the most progressive of all running for Governor at this time. She was State Superintendent of Public Instruction, and she will be a critical advocate for school funding, and for efforts to reduce class size in California. SHE DOE NOT TAKE CORPORATE MONEY.
I really haven’t decided which of the three I will vote for. I might want to vote for Gavin Newsome to try to get him into the run-off, since it is not clear that either John Chiang or Delaine Eastin can garner enough votes to get into the run-off. I might vote for John Chiang because if he does well, then maybe the run-off will be between Chiang and Newsome. I might vote for Delaine Eastin because she is progressive, doesn’t take corporate donations, and will focus on education, homelessness, and the environment.
I will not vote for Antonio Villaraigosa because not only is he taking corporate money, but the Charter school folk are putting millions of dollars into an Independent Expenditure to elect someone who will think nothing of helping to put all large urban public-school districts into bankruptcy. And his work employed by Herbal Life is from a group from whom no progressive should be receiving an outrageously large salary, as he did.
Jeff Bleich and Ed Hernandez are the two leading Democrats in this race. I do not know much about Jeff Bleich, but I did support Edward Hernandez when he ran for State Assembly. I will probably vote for Jeff Bleich, but I do NOT have information for an endorsement either way. I also like EIeni Kounalakis in this race, but don’t know her well enough.
In addition, Gayle McLaughlin is running as an Independent, and seems to have very, very progressive views on all issues. Many left-leaning organizations are endorsing her grass roots effort. I could see myself voting for her. Probably will make up my mind on this one at the polls, but probably will go with Mr. Bleich OR Ms. McLaughlin.
ATTORNEY GENERAL: DAVE JONES
I have always supported Xavier Becerra as he represented where I live and work in both the California State Assembly, and in the U.S. House of Representatives. He has done well in taking on the current U.S. President. However, he supports the Death Penalty, and Dave Jones opposes the death penalty. Dave Jones does NOT accept Insurance company donations or donations from “Big Oil,” Walmart, the Charter School Association, tobacco, private prison advocates and the bail industry while Becerra does accept money from all these sources. Becerra has had an inactive bar license for 24 of the past 25 years and did not practice law all that time. DAVE JONES is a progressive Democrat, an environmentalist, and a person who has spent his entire life supporting working people, supporting unions, civil rights, fighting poverty, and protecting consumers. I endorse him with enthusiasm.
SECRETARY OF STATE: ALEX PADILLA
STATE CONTROLLER: BETTY T. YEE
INSURANCE COMMISSIONER: RICARDO LARA
STATE TREASURER: FIONA MA
SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION: TONY THURMOND
STATE BOARD OF EQUALIZTION:
OFFICE #1: Tom Hallinan
OFFICE #2: Cathleen Galgiani or Malia Cohen (too little info.to choose one)
OFFICE #3: NANCY PEARLMAN. I have endorsed Nancy Pearlman because she has consistently been a progressive voice on the L.A. Community College District.
I am NOT supporting Scott Svonkin because he was involved in publicly harassing Nancy Pearlman and Mona Field on the L.A. Community College Board. When I withdrew my previous endorsement, I wrote to him saying, “Acts of harassment and intimidation of a colleague with whom you serve are NOT ACCEPTABLE.”
SHERIFF, LOS ANGELES COUNTY: ALEX VILLANUEVA. A retired Sheriff, Alex Villanueva believes that is long past time for reforming the leadership and direction of the County Sheriff’s Department. He believes that the recently elected Sheriff did NOT change the leadership that was corrupt under Sheriff Joe Baca and has done nothing to make the organization one that is fair and accountable to the public, all the public.
L.A. COUNTY ASSESSOR: JEFFREY PRANG
L.A. COUNTY SUPERVISOR, DISTRICT #1: HILDA SOLIS
L.A. COUNTY SUPERVISOR, DISTRICT #3: SHEILA KUEHL
STATE SENATE AND STATE ASSEMBLY:
I am not endorsing in most of these races. I support all incumbent Democrats on the ballot. With the support of my Kitchen Cabinet, I am endorsing in the following seats:
24th Senate District: MARIA ELENA DURAZO
32nd Senate District: VIVIAN ROMERO3
39th Assembly District: LUZ RIVAS
45th Assembly District: ANKUR PATEL
54th Assembly District: STEVE DUNWOODY. Many Democrats support Sydney Kamlager in this seat, and she is an excellent candidate and has been on staff with the progressive Senator Holly Mitchell. My support for Dunwoody began when he was running before the current incumbent had to leave the post due to illness. Steve Dunwoody is a progressive man, a veteran, and a person who deeply understands this district and will make a great Assembly Member. He supports single-payer and is for bail and prison reform. He opposes the death penalty and has the passion and desire to be a leader on a myriad of progressive issues.
RIVERSIDE COUNTY SUPERVISOR SEAT #2: PENNY NEWMAN. PENNY NEWMAN is running against five conservative Republicans. Her victory will mean she is the first woman to serve on this Board for more than two decades. Her victory will mean a Democrat majority on the Board of Supervisors and will change dramatically the politics of Riverside County government.
As always, I appreciate any feedback you wish to send. If there are Assembly or Senate races you want to tell me about, please do not hesitate to do so.
This is my best shot at recommendations and ENDORSEMENTS for the June 5th Primary.
ALSO, SOME OF US ARE WORKING TO “DUMP STEVE KNIGHT”, A REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMAN WE CAN DEFEAT FROM A DISTRICT IN NORTH AND WEST L.A. COUNTY. It means traveling to Lancaster and Palmdale on weekends, etc. IF YOU WANT TO JOIN, SEND ME AN EMAIL SAYING, “SIGN ME UP TO DUMP KNIGHT.”