People have asked me which local candidates and ballot measures I am supporting. With the election just 2 days away, I want to share with you who I am supporting and why.
Here are my recommendations (please see explanation below):
PRESIDENT and VICE PRESIDENT: Barack Obama and Joe Biden
U.S. CONGRESS: Barbara Lee
BERKELEY MAYOR: Kriss Worthington (Rank First)
Jacquelyn McCormick (Rank Second)
BERKELEY COUNCIL DISTRICT 2: Denisha DeLane (Rank First)
Adolfo Cabral (Rank Second)
BERKELEY COUNCIL DISTRICT 3: Max Anderson
BERKELEY CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 5: Sophie Hahn
BERKELEY RENT BOARD: Support the progressive pro-tenant slate –
Alejandro Soto Vigil, Judy Shelton,
Igor Tregub, Asa Dodsworth
BERKELEY SCHOOL BOARD: Judy Appel and Beatriz Leyva-Cutler
AC TRANSIT AT LARGE: Chris Peeples
AC TRANSIT, WARD 1: Yelda Bartlett
BART BOARD, DISTRICT 3: Rebecca Saltzman
BART BOARD, DISTRICT 7: Maria Alegria
Measure M (Street Repair Bond) – No Position
Measure N (Pools Bond) – YES!
Measure O (Pools Tax) – YES!
Measure P (Reauthorize existing taxes) – YES
Measure Q (Update Utility Users Tax) – YES
Measure R (Redistricting) – YES
Measure S (Ban on Sitting on Commercial Sidewalks) – NO!
Measure T (West Berkeley rezoning) – NO!
Measure U (Sunshine Ordinance) – No Position
Measure V (Getting Needed Financial Reports) – YES!
Measure A1 (Zoo Tax) – No Position
Measure B1 (Transportation Funding) – YES!
Prop 30 – YES!
Prop 31 – NO
Prop 32- NO!
Prop 33 – NO
Prop 34 – YES
Prop 35 – YES
Prop 36 – YES
Prop 37 – YES
Prop 38 – NO
Prop 39 – YES
Prop 40 - YES
Background on my recommendations:
This election is critical not only for the future of our country but also for Berkeley’s future.
Wall Street, corporations, and SuperPACs have spent millions trying to get Mitt Romney elected. Unfortunately in Berkeley, the bastion of liberal politics, the same is happening. Tens of thousands of dollars have been spent by large landlords and corporate interests in local races. Berkeley is at a crossroads and this is an election that will define the future of the City. Will we move in a direction of transformative change guided by the needs and values of our citizens, or will it be defined by politicians and corporate interests?
This is what is at stake. So its no wonder landlords, real estate interests and business are spending so much bankrolling campaigns.
Who are they backing? They’re backing a deceptively named slate called “Tenants United For Fairness”, who is really a pro-landlord slate (two of the candidates are landlords, and only one is a rent controlled tenant). They are running on a platform of attacking the Rent Board using a discredited Grand Jury Report, claiming something is wrong with how the Rent Board is being run. Their platform of lowering registration fees will result in less enforcement and pave the way for more evictions and rent increases. We saw what happened when a landlord slate took control of the Board in 1990 - rents increased 33% in just one year! Big landlords and business interests have already pumped $40,000 into the TUFF slate with the goal of electing candidates who will undermine important protections for renters.
Big developers, landlords and corporations have also given thousands of dollars in contributions to support City Council candidates Laurie Capitelli and Darryl Moore and have supported two divisive ballot measures. Measure S, the proposed ban on sitting on commercial sidewalks has been bankrolled by over $100,000 in contributions from commercial landlords, developers and businesses.Measure S would criminalize sitting on sidewalks, without providing any increase in shelter, services or Ambassadors.
Measure T, the measure to rezone a large part of West Berkeley has been primarily funded by one developer who would like to change existing rules for his benefit. This illustrates what Measure T is all about - changing the rules allowing for out of scale development that will overwhelm Aquatic Park and harm existing residents and business - all for the benefit of a few corporate developers.
We cannot let big business buy this election. We need to support candidates who will put the needs of residents first and defend Berkeley values. Please support these candidates and measures when you cast your absentee ballot or at the polls next Tuesday. For more information on my endorsements please email me at this address.
*Not written or sent using government resources