Many voters already have a ballot in their hands and are preparing to vote by mail. Using mail to vote is a great idea that has been shown to increase voter turnout, so we encourage all of you couch potatoes to fill out your ballot and give it to the postman. The rest of you can walk on down to your polling place June 6th and visit with the neighbors.
California State Assembly 41st District
Fran Pavley is being termed out, so a new assemblyperson will be elected. The “contestants” for the Democratic candidacy in this Primary Election are Julia Brownley, Barry Groveman, Kelly Hayes-Raitt, Jonathan Levey and Shawn Casey O’Brien. The seat, in a heavily Democratic district, will be decided in the fall general election. Whoever wins this primary will in all likelihood be our next assemblyperson.
There are many ways to justify a vote. And each of these candidates gives you a reason to vote for them. Democracy is certainly at play in this primary and we should be grateful for it. Unfortunately, it will most likely come down to who has the most money, not the best thing for a true representative system.
Kelly Hayes-Raitt is our first choice. Raitt has “shown up” and proven herself to be a hard working diligent candidate. Her eco values, an area we feel most urgent about, are superb. She brings excellent background experience having worked with former Lt. Governor Leo McCarthy. Raitt has a hard working mentality, and did a thorough job of walking the precincts. Her celebrity endorsements come from “right” thinking people (we do not mean conservative) with good hearts. It is most likely she will not win this race primarily due to the financial resources needed to swarm the district with meaningless mail pieces during the last days of the campaign. But we don’t care, we recommend voting for the person that best represents you, and for us it is Kelly Hayes-Raitt.
That being said, you may choose other candidates for other reasons. We like Shawn Casey O’Brien because he is such a strong and articulate candidate for not only the disability community but for many progressive issues.
We are hard-pressed to find good reason to vote for Jonathan Levey, but if you read and liked his book you might.
We like Barry Groveman because we feel he would be the most effective legislator. There is little doubt in our mind that he would be a bulldog in getting things accomplished. And for the most part we like what he wants to do. He is strong on environmental protection, is anxious to implement practical solutions for improving traffic problems and will support public education. He understands the legislative process and will be the candidate most likely to get things done.
Julia Brownley was the front-runner in the race when she first announced, but the other candidates have been running such a spirited campaign it is now doubtful that she will prevail. An argument can be made that with the Democratic Party strongly behind her she may just win, and they will help to support her as a legislator. She is the choice for many in Santa Monica due to her position as the President of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District. And with SMRR’s Chairman Denny Zane running her campaign, she received major endorsements. She is the hometown gal, so if you want to root for the home team vote for Julia.
Angelides or Westly?
State Treasurer Phil Angelides is being confronted with a robust campaign from State Controller Steve Westly to become the Democratic candidate in the governor’s race. These are two impressive guys who have made a lot of money on their own and have held statewide elected offices that deal with our finances. Are their personalities strong enough to contend with Arnold Schwarzenegger? Probably not, but they do have a chance to unseat him. The questions remain: who will be the stronger candidate and who will be able to succeed in a campaign for governor? On substantive issues there is almost nothing to distinguish the two, so the race will come down to a simple matter: whom you like personally (if that is possible to determine), and who can win in the fall.
We think Angelides has the more charismatic personality, the stronger support from his party, is bolder in thinking and thus we choose him.
Vote for Bowen and Brown
We have already stated it before; we favor Debra Bowen for State Controller and Jerry Brown for Attorney General. Both are slam-dunk choices due to their past records, their integrity, likeability, positions and competency.
Winograd over Harman
It is time to get rid of Jane Harman, our congresswomen for Defense. If you want to go to war, cozy up with defense contractors and be part of the conservative wing of the Democratic Party then vote for Harman. If you want real change – including a shift in foreign policy, domestic priorities and environmental protection – then vote for Winograd.
Vote Yes for Universal Preschool (Prop. 82)
We also support the Universal Preschool initiative. It is preschool for all instead of targeting low-income folks where the true need lies. This was done because the backers did not believe a targeted initiative would win. It may not be perfect but we think it will help.