|Your next Senator ... and next Democratic President? Kamala Harris|
I'm pleased that San Francisco's liberal alternative paper the Bay Guardian has come back from the dead online to offer endorsements. As when it was in print, the Guardian has done the most work locally of interviewing candidates and investigating propositions. I may not always (or even often) agree with the Guardian's politics but I am grateful for the effort of Tim Redmond, who was editor for more than 30 years and is back on the endorsement job in 2016. The San Francisco Chronicle, despite its much greater resources and more centrist politics, has never taken endorsements as seriously and can't always be trusted to have thought things through fully, but nonetheless my former employer's positions always influence my own. And as always I am grateful for the neutral site Smart Voter.
Having given credit where it's due, here are my endorsements.
US Senator: Kamala Harris
Don't be surprised if Kamala Harris, currently California Attorney General, runs for President soon, perhaps as soon as 2020 if the Democrats don't win this time. She's a protege of Barack Obama and like him is ambitious as all hell. That, frankly, is a selling point in voting for her as US Senator, because to be a Democratic Senator from California has become a lifetime appointment. Perhaps voters would have more carefully considered Dianne Feinstein the first time if they realized she could never be turned out of office. And Feinstein is still there, increasingly embarrassingly; this open seat is to replace retiring Barbara Boxer.
With that caution, Harris is the best candidate for this office on this ballot: she's smart, charismatic and has amassed good experience in a relatively short time. But will we get 30 years of her, or only 4? I wonder what Obama's former constituents in Illinois thought of him as a Senator?