Thursday, March 28, 2013
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
10% of CD7 Voters Did Not Vote for a Council Candidate
|An abstention can be a voter preference.|
The total number of ballots cast in CD7 was 21,874. That's the number of people who actually showed up (or pulled an absentee ballot) and either mailed in their AV ballot or dropped a ballot into the box. However, if you add up the total votes for candidates Nicole Chase, Felipe Fuentes, Krystee Clark and David Barron you get a total of 19,291 votes. That means that about 2,500 voters in CD7 voted/turned in a ballot BUT they did not mark a preference for the CD7 Council Member on their ballot.
By contrast, adding up the total of all of the votes for the Mayoral candidates in CD7, you get 21,082 votes. That means about 100 people chose not to/failed to mark a choice for Mayor. That makes sense because typically participation falls off as you go further down the ballot. Voters usually know who is running at the top of the ballot (President/Governor/Mayor) but as you go further down the list, they have no idea who these candidate are. Likely a fairly significant number of voters in CD7 (and remember, CD7 is big, not just ST) reached the City Council race on their ballot and went "Huh?"
Many of them, probably most of them picked the name they knew best - they got a mailer, a pot holder, saw a billboard, etc. if you asked them who they voted for or why, they may not honestly be able to tell you. A smaller group of the confused folks (in this case, a fairly significant number of about 10% of the CD voters) chose to not vote for ANY candidate. That could be for a number of reasons including a protest vote against ALL candidates but I'm going to posit the overwhelming bulk of those non-voters simply did not who the candidates were.
So, when you count the votes of those who actually indicated a preference for Council, a total of 19,921 votes, Fuentes' 9,912 votes represents 51.38% of the total vote (as shown on the final certified bulletin which I've attached the link below). Not a great showing for a candidate with his money, resources and experience but more than sufficient to be elected. Had Clark, Barron and Chase been able to pull any significant combination of those blank voters their way, there could very well likely have been a run-off, without even having had to flip a single Fuentes voters.
All points to how valuable decent get out the vote efforts are to a campaign that wants to win.
Late Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Hump Day
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Tuesday
Monday, March 25, 2013
We bring you this "Slick Willie" (Endorsement) of "The Villar Greuel"
Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Monday
los angeles sleuth March 25, 2013 at 02:23Information received by more than 20 individuals, parole agents and parole supervisors from several different assigned locations. PA 3 did take his new purchased toy ( assault weapon ) unclear if weapon was loaded or not to the previously referred to South Central Parole Complex. He was observed showing off his new toy to fellow co-workers by a parole administrator who then called Region 3 Headquarters and reported the incident. Many are saying that this PA 3 received an LOI less than 3 months after the initial date of the incident. Many unanswered questions. DOM written policies were violated. Unanswered questions. Did anyone notify CHP, after all the location of the incident was in a State Office ? This PA 3 placed the lives and welfare of his co-workers , clerical staff and others in harms way. He should have been re-assigned until a formal and complete investigation was completed. Formal letters to be sent out next week to many to and include state elected officials, State AG’s office , news media, LA. DA office, and others informing them of this latest incident and cover up by the Queen of parole MF and others. I have been told of yet another attempted cover up by parole administrators in Region 4 where a Parole Supervisor lost his cool and some type of altercation took place with a parole agent. I have been told that this incident took place in the Pomona-Ontario Parole Complex. Both parties involved has been transferred to other parole locations. I was also told this is why the current head of Region 4 made the decision to retire now than later. ( soon to retire.)
Sunday, March 24, 2013
A Special "Tracy the CD 2 Sock Puppet Constituent"Birthday Greeting to City Councilman Paul Krekorian
Saturday, March 23, 2013
A Bloggin Broadside on Sue Burnside's Past "Ethical Issues"
03/28/2009 07:05:25 AM PDT -- MONTEBELLO - A lawsuit filed against Burnside & Associates accuses Councilman Robert Urteaga of fraud and breach of contract for his work on a political campaign, officials said .Benjamin Austin claims the political consulting firm misrepresented him in his race for Los Angeles Unified School Board by failing to qualify him for the March 2009 ballot, according to a complaint filed March 3 with Los Angeles County Superior Court."At the end of the day, what happened was they told me they collected 500 signatures and validated them," Austin said. "They managed to collect them in the wrong district; they managed to use the wrong computer program to validate them."
..... and has Burnside & Associates had other "ethical issues"?
The complaint also accuses Urteaga of collecting signatures for a competing candidate simultaneously while working on Austin's campaign.
The complaint goes on to say that Burnside & Associates should have disclosed Urteaga's felonious past to Austin.In 1998, Urteaga pleaded no contest to grand theft of personal property totaling $30,000, according to court documents. He originally was accused of five counts of check forgery and one count of grand theft, but the District Attorney dropped the forgery counts in a July 1999 plea agreement.This is not the first time Burnside & Associates has been accused of fraud. In October 2008, Joon Il Kim, 30, was sentenced 90 days in jail for filing a false affidavit while working on behalf of Burnside & Associates. Meanwhile, Austin tried contacting Burnside immediately after hearing he did not qualify. Burnside refused to take his calls and the two have still not spoken, according to the complaint. Austin is suing to cover legal and campaign expenses and for the damage it has done to his reputation, he said."I am not a litigious guy, never sued anyone before ...," Austin said. "They (Burnside & Associates) handled it in a pretty strange way. We reached out to them, the day it all happened and she (Burnside) wouldn't take my call."
Friday, March 22, 2013
Greuel Campaign in Tailspin?
This news is on the heels of the announcement that Greuel received the endorsement of former Republican Mayor Richard Riordan, who had supported Kevin James in the primary. Not only did Greuel announce Riordan's backing, but said he'd be her first hire to play a significant role in handling the City budget. This revelation caught union leaders by surprise, the vast majority who have supported Greuel including spending millions of dollars in members' dues for the City Controller's campaign for Mayor.
MayorSam favorite political consultant Parke "Parque Esqueleto" Skelton, who is not associated with any mayoral campaign this cycle was dumbfounded by the move, telling the LA Times, "To adopt a new field strategy two months out seems like a recipe for dysfunction to me."
As noted by Joseph Mailander, writing at CityWatch, LA's progressives and union leaders are dumbfounded by the Riordan role in the Greuel campaign and potential administration, given that the financier turned Mayor is seen as a "pension buster." For sure, many a text message and email must have come out of IBEW, SEIU and LA County Fed iPhone, tablets and laptops with the subject line "WTF?"
We'll know soon enough if Greuel's change of field succeeds in turning out the mostly conservative Kevin James voters from the West Valley that Greuel needs to have a chance against frontrunner, Councilman Eric Garcetti. On the other hand it could fall flat should James announce for Garcetti and Wendy's campaign further alienates her most committed and loyal troops.
Who Does Outreach Better? Paul Krekorian or Dick Cavett?
TGIF Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine
At 200 Spring Street, another observance of a political persuasion will garner attention in the next coming weeks thanks to noted Civil Rights Attorney Leo Terrell. In an audacious legal maneuver, Terrell has blanketed City Clowncil Central Committee Strongman Herb “Mini Amin” Wesson and his fellow travelers on the Horseshoe with California Public Records Act requests for emails dealing with the 2012 Redistricting Scandal.
What backroom dealings are exposed are now only speculation, but the racial component is all too evident in the CD 9 Contest where the issue of race is being broached by both, the Ana Cubas and Curren Price Campaigns, respectively.
One can refer back to the infamous City Clowncil vote on the final Redistricting recommendations, to view CD 14 City Councilman Jose Huizar reading out the new racial percentages of the redrawn districts, especially CD 8, 9 and 10, thus, giving an early heads up on what is now transpiring in the battle to replace Jan Perry.
In the alleged words of Ana Cubas, “our (latinos y latinas) time is now”, or maybe not, for another four years if political justice wins out.
** City Attorney Carmen Trutanich scored a big time endorsement yesterday in his bid for political rehabilitation and a quest for another four years as the City of LA’s Top Barrister.
LA County Board of Supervisor Gloria Molina gave her endorsement blessings to Nuch which will bid well in the Latino Community. In addition, Nuch used the power of incumbency to garner positive media attention pertaining to the blight of illegal, digital billboards.
** As I read this morning in the “Old Gray Collectivist Hag on Spring Street”, both Mayoral Candidates Eric Garcetti and Wendy “The Villar Greuel”, have achieve flip-flopping their perceived political persona's. Garcetti is now the preferred choice of Business. The Villar Greuel the tool of Labor (or D‘Arcy‘s girl).
** With Tim LIEweke’s excommunication from the AEG LA LIVE City-State, the potential seed money to re-invent the concrete parkland of Pershing Square is on life supports pending a final resolution to the Farmers Field pipe dream. Yet, CD 14 City Councilman Jose Huizar in his tired but still laughable standard retort stated “obviously there is no money now, but where there’s is a will, there’s a way” (….. and there’s a CLARTS Fund).
** Finally, if we make the nearly fatal fiscal mistake of selecting City Controller Wendy “The Villar Greuel” as the third term incarnation of the failed Mayor Antonio Villar Political Machine, Ron Kaye gives us a glimpse of the various channeling masters that will control the actions of the “Villar Greuel”.
Your thoughts ………………
Scott Johnson in CD 14
Thursday, March 21, 2013
Another Soulvine Thursday: "Race-baiting in the Ninth"
Riordan endorses The Villar Greuel
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Late CD 14 City Councilman Art Snyder Memorial this Saturday
Labels: Art Snyder
Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Wednesday
The term-limits vote Tuesday symbolized the waning influence of L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa as his own eight-year tenure in office ends. Although the mayor has no formal authority over the board, candidates he helped elect make up a board majority. Garcia is the mayor’s closest ally on the board, and yet a member of mayor’s bloc, Richard Vladovic, defected to favor the term-limits proposal.
It has been rumored that Vladovic would flip pending the outcome of the recent LAUSD Elections and with Zimmer winning another term, the spotlight was on him at yesterday's proceedings on Beaudry, as noted by the LA School Report Blog.
As this was the first Board meeting since the March 5 election, observers were watching to see what effect, if any, the bitter primary campaign had on Zimmer. The incumbent District 4 Board member was attacked relentlessly by the Coalition for School Reform, which supported Garcia in a separate race.Zimmer insisted that the election had no effect on him. ”I’m not changed… You’ll still see more hand-wringing from me.”Asked to explain his change of vote, Zimmer said that, “Since the position has become so powerful, four years is a good time to moderate that power.”
....... and we can think of one Charter School Certification that merits a second review.
** Attention LA Mayoral Voters!! Please note that Mayoral Candidate City Controller Wendy "The Villar Greuel" is channeling United States Secretary of State John F-ing Kerry (who BTW, fought in Viet Nam). This is clearly evident in the fact of her being for re-opening pension reforms negotiations (in seeking the LA County Federation of Labor support), before coming out against the proposal (in seeking the LA Chamber of Commerce support), in today's "Old Gray Collectivist Hag on Spring Street.
** In the tight race to replace CD 1 City Councilman Ed "Density" Reyes, third place candidate Jesse Rojas has announced his support of Gil Cedillo, if the race proceeds to a runoff, pending the final count of votes.
** The Downtown News opines on the adverse affects that the litigious 2012 Redistricting Commission debacle had on the turnout for the CD 9 City Council Elections and on the campaign of Jan Perry for Mayor.
** LA Weekly's Patrick Range McDonald is right when it comes to Mayor Villar's "Legacy Issues" pertaining to his Million Trees Initiative. In the spirit of bloggin cooperation, we provide this photographing reinforcement of McDonald's premise for his morning post.
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Tuesday
According to reliable sources, former CD 5 City Councilman and failed Mayor Antonio Villar Lapdog City Attorney Candidate Jack Weiss, may be returning to the city payroll come July 1, 2013.
The return of Weiss to gainful city employment, is predicated on Mike “Bet Tzedek” Feuer becoming City Attorney, who then would select Weiss as his Chief of Staff, according to our sources.
For activists in CD 5 and city-wide, a union of Feuer and Weiss in the City Attorney Office, should be a rallying call for preserving an independent office, that is only beholden to the interests of the citizens within the City of Los Angeles.
** Here is some latest observations on the runoff contests for May.
** CD 1: Is it strange or the standard M.O. of the City Clerk Office, that we have not seen any updates on the uncounted Absentee or Provisional Ballots? Maybe this has to do with the fact that Gil Cedillo, is “this close” to breaching the 50% level, in his race against current City Councilman Ed Reyes anointed successor Jose Gardea?
** CD 9: The University of Southern California’s “Neon Tommy” News Blog, has this tear gusher on the “rags to one percent staffer riches story” of City Council Candidate Ana Cubas. We would recommend that the undergrads dedicate ample cyber space in exposing the “S.C. (scandalous conduct) Proclivities” of the former highest paid, city council Chief of Staff.
** CD 13: Who would have higher name recognition in CD 13, former LA Dodgers “one game wonder” Hee Seop Choi or LA County Labor Federation “parachute city council candidate” John Choi?
** LAUSD District Six: Simple political word problem for the brother and sister indoctrinators of UTLA, “If a candidate for the LAUSD School Board was a prior enabler on the now litigious 2012 LA City Redistricting Commission, what makes you think that Antonio Sanchez will vote against the educational interest of the “Eli Broad/ Mayor Villar/ Councilman Huizar / LAUSD School Board President Monica “Gorda Boo Boo” Garcia Education Machine“?
** City Controller: So sad to see how low the political star of CD 3 City Councilman Dennis “The Valley Zine” has fallen.
** Mayor: How much pandering does it take “The Villar Greuel” to secure the support of the LA County Labor Federation? Better question would be how much new revenue will “The Villar Greuel” need to create to pay off all her Labor IOUs?
Your thoughts …………..
Scott Johnson in CD 14
Monday, March 18, 2013
Krekorian Karma KO's Wendy Greuel
|Yep, she did it.|
Read more »
Saturday, March 16, 2013
LAAS Slashes Graveyard Shift; Impact on Safety Expected
The consequence of doing so will impact the life of approximately 1,500 animals residing at LAAS and Los Angeles public safety. During those six hours, there will be two Animal Control Officers on duty for the entire city of Los Angeles. Given that the two Officers will be manning the entire city, they will be out working in the field for a good portion of most nights. Therefore, the 1,500 will be in the shelter with no human supervision. Additionally, any incoming animals will either need to be tied to a pole or otherwise left alone in the front of the shelter, with no food, no water, and no medical attention. The hit-by-car animals will have to be left in a box if they are lucky otherwise lying on cold concrete in front of the shelter in bloody agony with crushed bones until the first LAAS employee arrives at 6 am.
Inside the shelter, according to Barnette's claims, we do not need to worry about dog fights with, as she calls them, "dangerous dogs like pit bulls" (see http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_22793409/los-angeles-animal-shelters-lose-nighttime-staff) because they will be housed separately. What she fails to mention is that many of the fights that end up with severe injuries are in the overcrowded dog kennels housing the cute little small to medium size dogs (those Brenda would put in the non-dangerous category). So when Snoopy and Poochie get in a fight, and there is no staff to separate them most probably at least one of them will sustains severe injuries, the injured dog will end up lying in their own pool of blood until the 6 am staff members arrive to clean the shelter, and will probably go unnoticed until the full staff arrives for the 8 am opening and find Snoopy and Poochie dying or dead in their cage. And with lucky, no other dogs in the same run will jump into the ring with them.
And should you be coming out of a party or out of a movie one night and an aggressive dog tries to bite or does bite you or your child, good luck getting help. If you call the shelter for help, you will most likely get no answer because the total of two ACOs on staff will most likely be out in the field with no one to answer the phone to summon them to your emergency. In other words, your public safety and the public safety of others are jeopardized by Barnette's decision as well. Even though public safety is a core mission of LAAS.
For those people turning in animals they do not want, if they do not tie them up outside the shelter when they discover "no one is home" at LAAS, they will likely dump the animals at the side of a road or elsewhere. Now these animals can cause traffic accidents, be picked up for dangerous use, procreate and add to the pet overpopulation, get struck by a car as they try to find their way home, or get sick, injured or starve to death.
What is Barnette's excuse for this?
Barnette blames the new South LA shelter opening, claiming she now has so many cages that she does not have enough staff to man the graveyard shift. Yet even though Barnette already moved staff from East Valley and West LA shelters to man the expanded South LA shelter, all of the shelters, although somewhat understaffed, are still completing their work.
Remember, if the staff is not working during the graveyard shift, then the paperwork and animal care work they did not do will need to be done by staff in the morning -- for a net staff savings of none.
What is Barnette's real reason for doing this?
It is telling that Barnette is lying and claiming that she told and got the approval of New Hope Partners to this change. Yet the majority of New Hope Partners, if not all of them, were never told about this change. Now you know and if you are as outraged as I am about the lives of the voiceless souls of our city shelters and the safety of our city then I urge you to speak up and make as much noise as possible.
Friday, March 15, 2013
Paying for Neighborhood Council Elections
Neighborhood Council executives throughout the City are up in arms at the news that their budgets may take a hit next year to pay for their local NC elections. Many complain that this proposal is in retaliation for the fact that the vast majority (some say 95-percent) of these community leaders urged a “NO” vote on Proposition “A” – the sales tax increase ballot measure a week ago,
When the City’s Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates meet this Saturday, March 13, to make recommendations for the Mayor’s 2013-14 City Budget, you can be sure that this topic will be high on the list of discussion. Unlike previous semi-annual NC budget conclaves held at City Hall, this week’s gathering will be broken up into four venues for various regions of Los Angeles:
Boyle Heights Technology Youth Center, 1600 East 4th Street; the Constituent Service Center, 8475 South Vermont Avenue; Saturn Elementary School, 5360 Saturn Street (Fairfax area); and the Braude Center, 6262 Van Nuys Blvd. The public is also invited to attend these sessions, which start at 8:00 am and end about noon.
An estimated ten thousand stakeholders in Los Angeles recently completed a Budget Survey, which asked questions and sought opinions about city spending and how to pay for it. The results of these questions will be announced and debated at these meetings.
The actual cost of neighborhood council elections varies widely upon the size of a NC, and how much effort the local board members want to spend advertising their local election. The cost of “outreach” also varies, depending upon whether the council wants to finance area-wide mailings – or simply put up a few posters.
The Department of Neighborhood Empowerment, the branch of city government which oversees all 95 neighborhood councils in Los Angeles, would like all governing boards to put a maximum effort into these elections. But a political reality is that local politicians, even at the neighborhood council level, are usually not motivated to have themselves replaced.
For example, the two Westlake Neighborhood Councils (North and South) put in a very minimal outreach effort for the 2012 election cycle, and most of the local board members were returned to their positions on the 15-member governing boards. Some NCs, especially in the San Fernando Valley, spent thousands of dollars promoting their elections, with candidate forums and advertising.
One of the inequities that no one wants to face is the fact that ALL 95 neighborhood councils receive the same amount of taxpayer money to spend, regardless of the size or population within each NC. It used to be $50,000 per year. When the economy tanked, it was reduced to $42,000, then $37,000, and now it is estimated that each next year’s NC budget will drop to only $25,000.
Every city department has been required to take a hit in their budget for 2013-14, which will cause a continuation of reduced services and a hiring freeze. Why do the local neighborhood councils believe that they should be exempt from these necessary cuts in funding? Many NC board members are demanding that we return to funding these community elected bodies to the former $50,000 level.
Unfortunately, for all the efforts going into budget forums, and outraged letters to editors, the fact is that a small number of greedy politicians – you know who they are – will ultimately decide who benefits, or suffers from how our decreasing resources are spent, and the local unions are the only ones who will have a seat the table.
Jennifer Solis is a graduate student and elected board member of the Westlake North Neighborhood Council. She takes comments at Cyberdiva@ca.rr.com
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Bloggin Spring Break Time
Saturday, March 09, 2013
|Who will he pick?|
A severe tuberculosis strain has broken out amongst the homeless population of LA's Skid Row and officials are scrambling to address it. Writing at CityWatch, author/blogger Joseph Mailander notes that "Over five of every six cases since 2007 have occurred among those homeless in Skid Row, for whom we have failed to provide housing, despite two decades of affordable housing programs and recent costly developments that are purported to house the greatest at risk." Mailander squarely lays the blame at LA's "Homeless-Industrial Complex" where a web of politically connected non-profit organizations, elected officials and Chamber of Commerce types spend millions in taxpayer dollars that do little to address getting any significant number of the homeless in homes. He observes that while "CEOs" of homeless service organizations get salaries often north of well paid Los Angeles City Council members, and apartment like housing units are developed at costs equivalent to the average single family home, existing stock and facilities which could house more individuals at a lower price point sit fallow. Mailander posits the City's policy of "containment" led to the TB outbreak, as opposed to spreading the homeless out in existing section 8 housing in a "regional approach" that doesn't require massive spending on homeless specific facilities. Blogger and homeless activist, Don Garza, told us he agrees with a regional approach stating "the homeless are in tears and those who have seen the horrors of the containment policy first hand living in the supportive housing in skid row" are hoping to see elected officials take a different approach.
Abraham Lincoln's troops won the battle at Gettysburg 150 years ago, which began to turn things around in the Civil War and likely saved the Union, but Los Angeles Pierce College President Kathleen Burke-Kelly is having none of it. Burke has cancelled the annual Heritage Days event on the West Valley campus. The event featured highly detailed Civil War re-enactments where children and others can first hand get an idea of what the battle was like and even ask questions of re-enactors who answer in the frame of the period. Yet, despite that Gettysburg Sesquicentennial observations are going on all around the country - and interest in Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War period is at an all time high with several popular movies, books and TV shows out on the subject - Burke-Kelley gave into naddering NIMBY naybobs in the Woodland Hills neighborhood who did not like "the noise." These are the same type of folks who got the Fourth of July Fireworks show cancelled at LA Valley College. Watch out, they may be coming to YOUR neighborhood
And finally when you consider the results of our Mayoral and other elections on Tuesday, one often wonders "who are these people?" who vote. We think late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel has found them! Watch below!
Friday, March 08, 2013
Kevin James Back on the Air!
Kevin James, once a popular radio broadcaster in Los Angeles before entering politics, will return to the airwaves Monday morning! Well for a day anyway as he fills on "The Morning Answer Show" on AM 870 The Answer from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. James will be sitting in for regular co-host, Ben Shapiro, along with anchor Brian Whitman and host Heidi Harris.
Besides post-morteming the elections, James will be asked about speculation that he may run for the GOP nomination for California Governor, as we reported the other day.
Set your radio dials!
Today we announce Frank Sheftel joins us as a contributor to the blog.
Frank Sheftel is a native of Hollywood California. He grew up in the San Fernando Valley, attending Grant High School and L.A.Valley College. His family has been in the Candy Business for two generations and owns The Candy Factory in North Hollywood for 35 years. He is known as the Candymaker to The Stars.
Frank has been involved in the political arena of L.A. Including running for City Council and advocating for Valley City-hood. Frank has served on the Board of the Thalians, a charity headed by Debbie Reynolds and Ruta Lee, devoted to Mental Health Issues.
Frank also writes a monthly column in the Tolucan Times. The Candy Factory is currently in development of a reality show featuring The entire Sheftel Family including Frank and his parents, sister and niece. Documenting their adventures as Hollywood Chocolatiers. Frank is heard weekly on LATalkRadio on his new talk show, Frank Talk, airing Sundays at 4:00 p.m.
Thursday, March 07, 2013
In the aftermath of the LA Mayor's election where former Federal prosecutor and radio broadcaster Kevin James presented a very respectable third place showing, the talk of what next has already begun.
The California GOP party is in shambles. Just last weekend the state party elected Republican stalwart and former legislator Jim Brulte as it's chairman. The party has fewer members than needed to block Democratic supermarjority votes in the Legislature, no statewide elected officials and it's highest ranking elected officials is Board of Equalization member Michelle Steele and, perhaps, LA City Council member Dennis Zine (is he still a Republican?)
At present, the only announced candidate for Governor is Hesperia Assemblyman Tim Donnelly (who?). There is talk of former Lieutenant Governor Abel Maldonado running as well as talk radio fans pushing Michael Reagan, the son of the former Governor and President, to run.
This morning on his talkradio program on AM 870 The Answer, Ben Shapiro tossed out the idea of James seeking the Republican nomination for California Governor.
That's not a bad idea for a Republican party struggling to maintain relevance. Shapiro noted the dearth of prominent candidates for the party to challenge Governor Jerry Brown and Kevin's pragmatic, moderate version of Republicanism might just be the ticket. It may not hurt, too, that James is openly gay and for marriage equity which removes at least one attack point for the Democrat.
Now, Kevin's sexuality, may very well be a liability for him in a GOP primary where a significant chunk of Evangelical Christians still play. Yet, many of us as Evangelical Christians might need to remember we're picking a Governor not a pastor So sexuality may not be a factor here.
Hard core Republicans like my buddy Phil Jennerjahn, who had a significant issue with James' homosexuality, might find yet another moderate Republican candidate an anathema. Remember Meg Whitman, Carly Fiorina, Mitt Romney? That's a good point and much can be said that perhaps the Republicans need to nominate a firebrand conservative in order to motivate the base and draw non-voting conservatives to the polls. However, James is no Whitman, Fiorina or Romney. Full of charm and articulate, James is a policy wonk on steroids combined with a Southern "aw-shucks" charm reminiscent of another politician who struggled initially with getting elected - but later landed the White House - Bill Clinton.
In addition to all this, there are a few hurdles for James to overcome. While he quickly went from being considered a gadfly by the mainstream press to a serious candidate, many have privately questioned the James campaign braintrust, in particular it's "get out the vote" capability. Though registered Republicans are a minority in Los Angeles, in a race against three well-known Democrats splitting the vote, James could have sailed into the runoff if Republicans and conservatives showed up in sufficient numbers. They did not. In a general election with equally daunting demographics, James will have to have an incredibly fired up base and peel off conservative Democrats to ensure victory. Murmurs around town that the local GOP leadership did little more than provide lip service to James and did not put their apparatus into place to turn out the vote will need to be addressed. While some speculate that perhaps there was a "pink-Bradley" effect at play with regard to GOP uneasiness about James' homosexuality, I believe it's larger than that, that a current moribund GOP has perhaps learned to live with being a minority party and is comfortable with things as they are. Plus, even though James ran a respectable campaign for Mayor, the fact remains he lost. That will be a question as to why he deserves a shot at a higher office.
If James can assembly a technically proficient campaign team and fire up his base, he has an excellent shot. If anything, watching him debate Jerry Brown will be a treat. To be sure, Brown, even at 74, is a far more adroit debater than Wendy Greuel, Eric Garcetti and Jan Perry could ever hope to be. James will have to work hard to equal his performance in the Mayor debates with the more spry Brown. Still, it will be a lot of fun if this race develops. Stay tuned.
At Least There's No Hanging Chads!
In the meantime, Fuentes avoided a runoff by about 200 votes. According to the City Clerk, there are about 35 precincts in CD7. I don't know if challengers Nicole Chase, Krystee Clark and/or David Barron engaged captains in each one of those precincts, but you can be sure Fuentes did. Had any of the three challengers managed to call up and get about 6 more people per precinct out for them, or flip a Fuentes voters, Chase would be in a runoff with the former Assemblyman right now. Despite that, supporters of the challengers in CD7 are talking up the number of candidates, issues with signs, bullying, etc. While each of those issues do need to have a conversation around, the simple truth is it comes down to numbers.
Speaking of numbers, blogger/writer Joseph Mailander (check out his new book Days Change at Night: Notes from LA's Decade of Decline in Los Angeles 2003-13) crunches some election results out of Sunland-Tujunga and Silver Lake coming up with what we might call an "dis/enchanted index" for Wendy Greuel and Eric Garcetti:
"Disenchanted v. enchanted? Wendy Greuel carried all precincts in Sunland-Tujunga, but received under 50% in all but one. Eric Garcetti carried all precincts in Silver Lake by over 50%, some over 60%, and one over 70%."
Always remember folks, politics is a numbers game!
Wednesday, March 06, 2013
Notes on the March Elections Scorecard
Labels: 2013 mayoral election