Monday, April 9, 2012

San Diego Mayorial Race

As we close in on the June 5 primary that will most likely determine the two candidates to compete in November for mayor of San Diego, media interest is heating up. My complaint? Lack of focus on the key issues for the campaign; how will we reform pensions and in general control spending in the city. Over at, a mainly Republican local blog site (to which I am occasional contributor), most of the recent posts have been about the race, but in my view only peripherally. Instead the discussion has been dominated by "insider" discussion about who is working for whom, the role of SD GOP chair Tony Krvaric and the education plans of the would-be mayors. A reminder to San Diego residents: The mayor has no voice over the school system. All the polling I have seen, leads one to conclude that we are headed for a run off in November between Republican Carl DeMaio and Democrat Bob Filner, in the officially non-partisan race.

DeMaio was an early and vocal opponent of Proposition D, the half cent sales tax increase that lost last year. His issues web page features the budget and pension and jobs as his top two priorities, matching my own. With regards to jobs, he correctly makes the connection between tax and fee increases and job losses. He has been a consistent supporter of streamlined processes to allow businesses to get started.

Bob Filner's website calls out his first three priorities as Jobs, Education and Neighborhoods. Of course he trots out the "green jobs" agenda that is already a failed joke nationally. Also, Filner is against any pension reform, calling it fraudulent. Richard Rider commented that Filner will release his plan as soon as the union's tell him what it is. Electing Filner will give us more of the same on pensions and the budget. Filner, as the only Democrat in the race, will get the enthusiastic support of the workers' unions, but as I have previously discussed, I think the interests of the workers and their unions diverge.

Fletcher and Dumanis have yet to provide me with compelling reasons to consider their candidacy. Their past views on Prop D form my litmus test for today. Those who supported the initiative have been proven spectacularly wrong. Dumanis' and Fletcher's failure to vigorously oppose the initiative should be considered disqualifying by conservatives and libertarians and even moderates.

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