Monday, May 7, 2018

Endorsements for the June 2018 election in San Francisco, California

Gavin Newsom at his other job. Courtesy SF Chronicle
We should talk more broadly about politics in this country. Instead, most of our "political" discussions have deteriorated into the kind of name-calling you see between fans of rival sports teams.

This is why I give endorsements for every election. I tell you who/what I'm going to vote for and why. I encourage all of you who have any online forum -- Twitter, Instagram, whatever -- to also tell us how you're voting on local issues, rather than parrot national outrage posts that may have been written in Moscow.

In making city endorsements, I triangulated between the centrist San Francisco Chronicle and the leftist San Francisco Bay Guardian (click on the publication names to read their endorsements directly.) I want to salute Tim Redmond, longtime Guardian editor, for continuing to put in the hard work of interviewing candidates and carefully investigating ballot measures even though the print publication has ceased to be.

For state races I also read the endorsements of the Los Angeles Times and Sacramento Bee; both are generally centrist publications. And I read various candidates' Wikipedia pages (some linked below), news stories about ballot propositions, etc.

Your first stop outside this post should be Voter's Edge California, a nonpolitical site which will show you what is on your specific ballot and where to find your polling place. In the November election that site will have lots of useful information provided by the candidates themselves, but as of this writing it's still a little sparse. That's a shame because many of the races will be decided in June.

I didn't write these endorsements as click bait, but I might as well start with my most surprising pick.

Kevin DeLeon
US Senator: Kevin DeLeon

At age 84, Dianne Feinstein is the oldest member of the Senate. Her age isn't a competence issue, but her views haven't evolved as California's have, and she has become unrepresentative of what Democrats here want. Example: she was a strong opponent of legal cannabis her entire career until LAST MONTH when it occurred to her that it's an election issue. In 2016 she said that her time on the state parole board convinced her that cannabis was a gateway drug and she campaigned against its legalization.

That's just one example. I could list others, but just take a look at this chart. Feinstein supports Donald Trump's agenda much more than she should: she is second of every Democrat in the Senate in oversupporting Trump.

Do you want a California Democratic Senator to support Trump's agenda? I do not.

DeLeon is easily the best of the many candidates who probably won't get the votes to replace her. The Southern California native was president of the State Senate for four years, and he authored important bills on renewable energy. Look through his positions; he represents current California political views. Feinstein does not.

US House, District 12: Nancy Pelosi

I'm not a huge fan of Pelosi remaining in the house party leadership role. Not only is she a great political tool for Republicans running for office, she says impeachment is off the table. What? Before Mueller's even done? But she has no credible local opposition for her House seat. At least with her in office San Francisco's representative will be powerful.

(Endorsements continue after the jump)