Four more candidates have pulled papers for the November 7 City Council election since the first week the forms became available, and two have withdrawn, swelling the list to 17 hopefuls for the three open seats. Time still remains before the August 11 deadline to file nomination papers, and so the field, already larger than the 16 candidates who ran for four open seats in 2004, may not yet be set.
Those most recently joining the race are: Donna L. Block, who ran for the council in 2000 stressing local issues over global concerns; Gordon Donald Adlen, who reported that he ran unsuccessfully for the 20th State Senate District in the San Fernando Valley earlier this summer; Jonathan Mann, a former teacher who ran for the council in 2004; and Brennan Lindner, a director of fitness activities with Generic Events. Since taking out nomination papers on July 26, Lindner has decided he does not have time for the campaign this year but promises to return for the next election.
The three council seats at stake in the election are those held by incumbents – all seeking re-election – Pam O’Connor, Robert Holbrook and Kevin McKeown. Perhaps the strongest challenges in the early going are presented by Santa Monica Planning Commissioner Terry O’Day and by Gleam Davis, who obtained the early endorsement of the Community for Excellent Public Schools (CEPS). Davis, along with O’Connor and McKeown, also obtained the endorsement of Santa Monicans for Renters Rights (SMRR) on Sunday, August 6.
Among those who pulled nominating papers during the first week, names that may be familiar to Santa Monicans from unsuccessful campaigns on past council ballots are Pro Se, an advocate for persons with disabilities who ran in 2002; Linda Armstrong, who finished last in the 2004 field of candidates; and Jerry Rubin, who ran in 2000 and 2002 and who lists “Peace Activist” as his middle name on his filing. Rubin has since decided not to run this year, but to support the candidates endorsed by SMRR and encourage everyone to register and vote.
Also taking out papers during the first week they were available were candidates new to elective politics: Mark McLellan, a broker in investment real estate who came to Santa Monica in 1999 and wants to contribute to the community that has become his home; Stewart Lamle, an inventor (of a variety of things, but best known for games) who has been in town since 1996 and who believes the City is far too corrupt the way it is run now; Jenna Linnekens, an event planner with a journalism background who has lived in the City for seven years and says Santa Monica is at a “tipping point” and hopes to be a voice of sensible reason for the community; and Vincent Garofalo, a four-month resident and self-described political activist who believes the Council needs a fresh perspective from a different approach.
Steve Corchado, William Davis and John Medlin also pulled nominating papers. Edward Winterer took out the forms and collected signatures, but has decided that family responsibilities (including a two-month-old son) make discretion the better part of valor this year and so will not be running.