Several Westside Democratic clubs have formed a coalition to defeat the ballot initiatives Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is backing in a special election in November.
As a first step, the new Democratic Westside Coalition has opened a political action headquarters at 1508 Eighteenth Street, at Broadway, in Santa Monica.
An inaugural gathering at the headquarters on Sunday, August 21, to which the public is invited, will kick off the grassroots group’s campaign. It’s scheduled from 1 to 4 p.m.
Several speakers have been invited, including L.A. City Councilman Bill Rosendahl; State Assembly persons Karen Bass, Fabian Nunez, Paul Koretz and Fran Pavely; State Senators Debra Bowen, and Sheila Kuehl; Board of Equalization Chair John Chiang; former Assemblyman George Nakano; Santa Monica City Council members and Torrance Councilman Ted Lieu, who is running for the 53rd State Assembly seat left open by the death of Mike Gordon.
The new headquarters provides local Democratic club volunteers with a central location from which to launch a multi-faceted effort to counter the Governor’s campaign for the ballot measures that he will put to voters in the special statewide election on November 8.
“The clubs agreed that we will have a better chance of defeating the Governor’s deceptive initiatives if we join forces,” said Joe Halper, president of the Pacific Palisades Democratic Club.
Marc Saltzberg, president of the West L.A. Democratic Club added, “We have a positive message to bring to the voters. We want to let them know how they can protect their sons and daughters from the special interests assembled to support the Governor and his agenda. Our new headquarters will enable us to spread the word more effectively and with one voice.” He said.
The coalition plans to conduct phone banking, and voter registration, host ballot initiative information events, and walk area precincts.
The office will be open Monday thru Friday, noon to 9 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, 11a.m. to 9 p.m. The phone number is (310) 315-3013.
According to headquarters manager Diane Guthman, the Democratic Westside Coalition will focus its efforts on defeating Proposition 74, the “Punish New Teachers” initiative; Proposition 75, the “Paycheck Deception Act;” and Proposition 76, the “Education and Health Services Cuts Act.”
The group will also work to defeat Proposition 73, the “Endanger our Daughters Amendment” and Proposition 78, the prescription drug initiative, which was authored by the pharmaceutical companies.
The Coalition supports Proposition 79, “The Cheaper Prescription Drugs for Californians Act” and Proposition 80, the “Affordable Electricity and Preventing Blackouts Act.”Members of the coalition are the Pacific Palisades Democratic Club, the West L.A. Democratic Club, the Westside Grassroots Democratic Club, the Progressive Democrats of L.A., the Malibu Democratic Club, and the Progressive Democrats of the Santa Monica Mountains.