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My voting slate for 2008

Otto Bannard Voting (LOC)

As a San Francisco resident, I’ve got a lot to vote for in this election. Aside from the high profile national election, there’s a ton of state and local propositions as well as a number of San Francisco Board of Supervisor seats up in the air. As an unabashed lefty, here’s who and what I voted for. Much of my selections track the League of Pissed Off Voters’ guide and the SF Bay Guardian’s voter guide.

There are several great people that I know personally who are running for public office in San Francisco this election. Most of whom I met while working to get Matt Gonzalez elected mayor in 2003. A great campaign that ended in a narrow loss to current mayor-for-life Gavin Newsom. Now these great candidates are graduating to positions of trust and authority, ready to carry the progressive torch. Please consider giving them your vote.

San Francisco Board of Supervisors
D1: Eric Mar – Solid progressive voice on SF’s school board.
D5: Ross Mirkarimi – Up for reelection. I worked for Ross on his first campaign when he won Gonzalez’s previously held seat.
D9: Mark Sanchez – Progressive voice of reason and president of SF’s school board. He’d make an awesome supervisor in the Mission.
D11: John Avalos, Randy Knox – I know John from the progressive political scene around City Hall. Hard core committed to helping people. Randy is great too, a lawyer and pal from the Gonzalez campaign.

Community College Board: Bruce Wolfe – Bruce is one of the first people I met on the Gonzalez campaign, we connected easily as he handled all desktop and network operations for him. Bruce is a technology advocate, but does so smartly and ensures that those without access get it. He’s long been involved in City College, a supporter of tenants rights, a social worker and has a great dog named Charlie.

BART Board: Tom Radulovich – Tom is rad and a solid progressive. Supporter of smart urban growth and transportation. Not uncommon to bump into him in Critical Mass. Up for reelection.

Congress, District 8: Cindy Sheehan – While Cindy has a snowball’s chance and has zero political experience, she does provide a good protest vote against Nancy Pelosi, who has strayed from her core San Francisco constituency in recent years. Hearing Pelosi on NPR say she couldn’t debate Sheehan because she was too busy in Washington helping other Democrats’ campaigns clinched this for me. A healthy democracy thrives on alternative viewpoints and debate. If we had instant runoff voting (IRV) for congressional seats, this wouldn’t need to be a protest vote.

President: Barack Obama / Joe Biden – Obama’s hat in the ring has done more to unify and inspire a massive swath of disaffected citizens in this country and around the world. While Obama may not be the perfect candidate, and really who is, his winning the presidency is historic and symbolic on so many levels. I have confidence with Obama’s community organizer roots, that he will do the right thing for the majority of voters. That’s a refreshing turnaround from the last 8 years. While I love Matt Gonzalez and his ideas, there’s no way I can support a Nader/Gonzalez ticket this year.

San Francisco Propositions

A: Yes
B: Yes – Affordable housing bond.
H: Yes – Public power YES. PG&E is waging an all out fud campaign to stop this. Ignore the hype around the fictitious ‘blank check’.
J: Yes
K: Yes – Decriminalizes prostitution.
N: Yes
Q: Yes
R: Yes – Rename SF’s sewage treatment plant after George W. Bush. I can’t think of anything more appropriate.

California propositions

1A: Yes – High speed rail = good.
2: Yes – Happy animals taste better.
4: No – Mandatory parental notification of abortion. Third time this on the ballot.
5: Yes – Rehab and drug treatment for non-violet drug offenders. A no brainer.
6: No
7: No
8: No – Would ban legal gay marriage in California, creating state sanctioned discrimination against many of my friends.
9: No
10: No
11: No – Redistricting plan. Needed but this way isn’t right.
12: Yes – Housing bond for veterans.

Gone Green

whiteleaf.gifThat’s it. I’ve gone Green. The Democratic Party has failed me something fierce. Their strategy was to go against Bush playing his own game, trying to position Kerry as a slightly “gentler and more thoughtful” version of Bush. Kerry agrees with the war in Iraq, but he would have “executed it differently”. Kerry voted for and believes in the Patriot Act but would “tweak it” a little. Guess what? A watered down version of Bush is not that appealing to either the left or the right! The Democratic Party has let the Republicans walk all over them this election and they can’t blame Nader for it this time. But they are blaming. Diane Feinstein is blaming Gavin Newsom for the Republican attack on gays. This is classic broken Democratic Party thinking at work. Find someone else to blame, don’t look inward and take responsibility for your own failings. That’s EXACTLY the game the right wing idealogues play! Democrats are supposed to be the ones standing up for civil rights, social justice, peace, equality and a living wage.

That has changed, it is now the Green Party espousing these values along with corporate accountability, electoral reform and environmental sustainability. It’s going to take a third party to “remind” the Democrats what their principles are. History has shown that when one of the major parties strays too far from their principles, it takes a third party eating their base to bring them back to reality. Either way, going Green can only mean good things. Either the Greens grown in strength and continue to win more local and state offices or the Democrats finally wake up and co-opt the values they have strayed from. The outcome is good for anyone who cares about democracy and equal representation for all.

If you live in California, here’s a link to change your voter registration online. I recommend it.

Bloc Up the Vote!

From the League of Pissed Off Voters…

Local Hip-hop/Punk Voter Blocs Launch Today in 90+ Cities To Swing Elections Up and Down the Ballot

You’ve seen Eminem’s video.
Now watch us make it REAL
As we unite and swing elections from Tallahassee to Toledo

Hip-hop + Punk Political Power Goes to the Next Level 115+ Local voter guides launch today on www.indyvoter.org covering more than 90 cities in 31 states. Members of The League of Pissed Off Voters researched local candidates across the country and endorsed those who best represent our interests. NO ONE HAS EVER DONE THIS BEFORE. Get your local voter guide on www.indyvoter.org. Print it. Take it to the polls. And sign up for the VOTER BLOC. Then email blast to everyone you know. Th! e more people we get to use the guides and join the BLOCs, the more elections we win. Then we can prove our numbers as a hip-hop + punk voting bloc that can hold politicians accountable after November 2.

This is how we WIN elections up and down the ballot– and PROVE we did it!!


Make sure everyone you know brings a Voter Slate to the polls –Tuesday!!!

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