Politics

Do you believe an Obama victory will help our national economy and local business community?

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SDG&E PLAN TO CUT POWER GETS FROSTY RECEPTION AT PUC HEARING; BACK COUNTRY RESIDENTS, PUBLIC OFFICIALS VOICE OBJECTIONS

By Miriam Raftery

November  2008
(San Diego) — Public officials and backcountry residents leveled
harsh criticism at SG&E during a public meeting of the California Public
Utilities Commission (CPUC) convened in San Diego on October 14 to discuss
causes of the 2007 wildfires and how to prevent future conflagrations.  Speaker
after speaker blasted SDG&E’s proposal to cut power to 45,000 homes
during high fire risk conditions and urged commissioners to take action to
prevent future fires.  (Citizens with information for the CPUC may send
an e-mail to sd2007fires@cpuc.ca.gov.)

HOPE PREVAILS:  OBAMA VICTORY HAS LONG COATTAILS LOCALLY

By Miriam Raftery

Democrats gathered at House of Blues await word on Presidential
race

On the night when most of America turned blue, Democrats gathered to celebrate
at the aptly-named House of Blues in San Diego.  Cheers greeted the historic
announcement that Barack Obama had just been declared the winner, becoming
the first African-American president in U.S. history.   Kristy Mundt,
president of the East County Democratic Club, exchanged high-fives with fellow
Democrats, passing out Obama stickers. Hope filled the air and flowed outside
onto streets flocked with revelers, where strangers embraced and even homeless
people grinned, offering thumbs-up signs.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY TURNS BLUE:  MORE REGISTERED DEMOCRATS THAN REPUBLICANS, REGISTRAR REPORTS

Democratic voter registration volunteers cheer as Party
Chair Jess Durfee announces San Diego County now has more registered Democrats
than Republicans.

NOVEMBER
2, 2008 (San Diego) —
“We have, after 24 years, returned San Diego
County to the blue column,” San Diego County Democratic Party Chairman
Jess Durfee announced at a press conference today.

REMEMBER TO VOTE! ELECTION DAY TUESDAY NOV. 4TH

TIPS FOR VOTERS:

  1. Forgot to mail your absentee ballot? Do NOT put it in the
    mail! Ballots received late will NOT be counted. Instead, take it to any
    polling place or to the Registrar of Voters office.
  2. Have to work on Election Day? California law requires that
    your employer let you take time off from work to vote.
  3. Disabled and can’t stand in line?
    A new rule lets you bring a friend to request curbside voting at any polling
    place in San Diego County.
  4. If you’re
    in line before 8 p.m. you have an absolute right to vote.

See our “Politics” section for info on East County political races.

TAKE OUR POLLS: PRESIDENT & CONGRESIONAL RACES

FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE, CITIES & BOARDS TAKE STANDS ON PROP 8

Events planned this weekend by supporters and opponents of initiative
to overturn same-sex marriage

By Miriam Raftery

Art Madrid, La Mesa Mayor

November 1, 2008 (La Mesa) - La Mesa’s City Council voted unanimously
to take a neutral stance on Proposition 8, drawing applause from most of the
crowd assembled at council chambers last week.

“The city of La Mesa will not allow its council chambers to be the battleground
for conflicting social issues,” Mayor Art Madrid observed. 

A CONSERVATIVE AGAINST PROP. 8!

By the Rev. Michael C. Boblett

Editor’s Note: Proposition 8 seeks to overturn the legality of same-sex
marriages in California.

I
believe that Proposition 8 is a perfect example of an important fault line
dividing the conservative movement in America today.  On one side of this
line are people like me, fiscal conservatives who prefer a government
that does not seek to legislate private morality.  On the other side are
those who seek, whether they admit this or not, to turn this republic into
a theocracy. 

CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATES ADDRESS ECONOMY, WAR, WILDFIRE AND OTHER ISSUES IMPACTING EAST COUNTY

By Joseph Rocha

 

Duncan Hunter
Mike Lumpkin

October 28, 2008 (San Diego's East County) - For better or for worse, come November 4th, the 27-year stronghold on the 52nd Congressional seat will be released.  Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter is retiring.  Now, East County finds itself under siege in one of the hottest Congressional races of the season as two local military heroes step up to the podium,  each confident in their integrity and ability to lead--and battle for every vote.  As a veteran myself, I looked forward to interviewing, researching and attending a debate to learn more about two candidates with military experience vying to represent our region, as well as a third-party challenger.

 

View a video of the debate here:   http://www.copswiki.org/Common/M796

Scroll down for ECM's analysis of the debate...

LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON? LEGACY OF DUNCAN HUNTER, SR. AT ISSUE IN CONGRESSIONAL RACE -- AND THE RECORD MAY SURPRISE YOU

By Miriam Raftery

October 28, 2008 (San Diego's East County) - Duncan
Duane Hunter seeks to capture the 52nd Congressional seat being vacated by
his father, 27-year Congressman Duncan Hunter.   He has voiced
support for his father’s voting record yet chided his principal opponent,
Michael Lumpkin, for claiming that the Hunter family seeks a monarchy-like
transfer of power.

The question of legacy, then, is a legitimate campaign issue.  Just how
closely would Hunter’s son follow in his father’s footsteps if
elected—and is that legacy a path that voters should support? 

MUTINY AT THE GOP?

By Miriam Raftery

November 1, 2008 (San Diego) - San Diego Republican Party Chair Tony Krvaric is alleged to have rigged endorsements including a mayoral race, violated state election law and party rules.  A complaint filed by a Central Committee member calls for Krvaric’s ouster.  Will the GOP Central Committee make its chairman, who has previously been implicated in piracy, walk the plank?

EL CAJON VOTERS TO DECIDE ON SALES TAX HIKE

Councilman blasts Assembly Rep for opposing Prop J without consulting
Council or Mayor

By Miriam Raftery

77th District Assemblyman Joel Anderson

Voters in El Cajon will decide whether or not to approve Proposition J,
which would raise sales tax by one-half cent on the dollar.

“The decision to place a sales tax increase on the ballot for El Cajon
residents was quite painful for the Mayor and City Council,” said Dick
Ramos, the most senior member of the Council.   Mayor Mark Lewis
also supports the tax increase, which city leaders say is critical  to
fund police and fire services, parks maintenance and other vital services.   The
ballot argument in favor states that “there is nothing left to cut except
essential services including public safety.” 

11 CANDIDATES VIE FOR 3 SEATS ON EL CAJON COUNCIL

Contenders clash on budget solutions, jobs, housing, and religion in politics  

By Miriam Raftery

How should El Cajon address its budget shortfall?  Should public jobs be privatized, or services cut?  Or can new revenues and employment be created with an industrial park, green jobs, a new hospital, a university, or other innovative solutions?  Candidates differ sharply on these and other issues.  They also disagree on whether to assist struggling renters and homebuyers, how to fill vacant buildings downtown, and whether voters should approve Proposition J to raise sales tax by half a cent per dollar.

LEMON GROVE COUNCIL CANDIDATES OFFER FRESH PERSPECTIVES

By Miriam Raftery

October
25, 2008 (Lemon Grove) -
Who has the best fresh ideas for Lemon Grove?   Which
candidate can squeeze the most benefits out of shrinking tax dollars?

What seeds
of future development should be planted for the city’s future—and
was the Council’s vote to raise its pay 40% a sweet or sour deal?

CONTROL OF GROSSMONT UNION HIGH SCHOOL BOARD HANGS IN BALANCE

Election creates rift among Republicans

By Miriam Raftery

Five candidates are vying for two seats on the Grossmont Union High School District (GUHSD) Board of Trustees. The stakes are high. The outcome of this election may determine if  a popular superintendent will be retained, if a new high school will be built in Alpine, and if divisive forces will regain a majority on the board—forces that prominent Republicans and Democrats have accused of opposing public education.

PROPOSITION U SEEKS FUNDS FOR CLASSROOM UPGRADES, NEW BUILDINGS IN GROSSMONT UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT

By Miriam Raftery

Grossmont
Union High School District’s superintendent and four of five GUHSD
school board trustees agree that Proposition U is critical to repair and
replace aging buildings throughout the district—and build a long-awaited
new high school for Alpine.

ETHICS, BUDGET CUTS, & CHOOSING NEW CHANCELLOR TOP ISSUES IN GROSSMONT-CUYAMACA COMMUNITY COLLEGE BOARD RACE

By Miriam Raftery

The
race: 
Four candidates are running for two seats on the Grossmont-Cuyamaca
College Board of Trustees.  Challengers Mary Kay Rosinski and Moe Bakeer
face off against incumbents Tim Caruthers and Bill Garrett, board president.  ECM
interviewed Rosinski, Caruthers and Garrett; Bakeer did not respond to interview
requests.

Remember "L" is on "La Mesa" ballots

City faces low reserves; bond rating, city jobs at stake if measure
fails to pass

By Kristin Hobbs Kjaero

The proposition

Proponents call it the “Vital City Services Measure,” and opponents
call it a “Pension Tax.” The impartial ballot analysis identifies
it as a “general tax,” which means revenue would go into La Mesa’s
general fund and “the City would not be legally bound to use this tax
revenue for any special purpose or for any specifically identified special
services, facilities or programs.”

STATE OF DISUNION:  WAR VETERANS SPEAK OUT AGAINST MILITARY ABUSE OF TROOPS IN LOCAL STOP ON NATIONAL TOUR

By Miriam Raftery

Editor's Note:  Military authorities declined to speak with East County Magazine regarding this story. We also requested permission to interview veterans at Balboa Naval Hospital to obtain a diverse range of views on conditions in mlitary service.  Our request was denied.

 

October 18, 2008 (San Diego)--Army intelligence officer Selena Coppa has risked her freedom to speak out.  “One of my soldiers died. He had PTSD (post traumatic stress syndrome),” she said.  “It was ignored.”  

After she revealed the truth about the soldier’s death, Coppa told East County Magazine, her commanding officer threatened her.  “He said if he’d known what I was going to do,  he would have put me in Walter Reed in the mental ward and made sure I never got out.  Then what would happen to my little girl?”

Coppa and Hess accuse the U.S. government and military officers of neglecting soldiers with serious mental health problems and of fostering a climate of intimidation against those who speak out.

CUYAMACA COLLEGE RETRACTS ENFORCEMENT OF BAN ON POLITICAL MESSAGES IN FACULTY OFFICE WINDOWS

By Miriam Raftery

Obama Sticker in WindowOctober
14, 2008 (El Cajon) -
After English professor Timothy Pagaard posted a small
Barack Obama sticker on the outside of his office window at Cuyamaca College,
he was astounded to receive a warning from the Dean on September 27th ordering
him to remove his message in support of the presidential candidate.

7th DISTRICT FIGHT - EMERALD VS. BOLING:  YOUR RINGSIDE GUIDE

Accountant April Boling refuses to comment on allegations of “illegal and unethical bookkeeping”; opponent Marti Emerald shares vision for San Diego’s future

By Joseph Rocha

October 15, 2009 (San Diego)--Touted  as “The Troubleshooter vs. the Accountant” by local media,  San Diego’s 7th District Council race sounds more like a build-up to a Saturday night cage fight than a hotly contested political contest..  But the issues at stake will impact many residents in San Diego’s eastern region, since the district includes Allied Gardens, City Heights, Del Cerro, Grantville, Redwood Village/Oak Park, Rolando, San Carlos, the SDSU college area, and Tierrasanta.  At stake:  fire protection for our region, energy and water issues, outsourcing of public jobs, responsibility to taxpayers, integrity and openness of our City government. 

Great Debates: Congressional Candidates Square Off

Duncan Hunter
Mike Lumpkin

52nd
Congressional district candidates face off in a series of five debates. Here's
your chance to learn first-hand where candidates stand--or even ask a question
yourself!

Former U.S. Navy Seal Commander Mike Lumpkin, a Democrat,
battles ex-USMC Captain Duncan D. Hunter, Republican, and Libertarian Mike
Benoit to replace retiring Congressman Duncan Hunter in debates Oct. 7, 8,
12, 22 and 28.

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WATER, PACE OF DEVELOPMENT TOP CONCERNS IN CAMPO/LAKE MORENA PLANNING GROUP RACE

By Miriam Raftery

Lake Morena

October
6, 2008 (Campo) -
Concerns over the impacts of new and proposed
major developments on water supplies and community character have divided community
members in this rural region.  

Tensions ran high at a forum for Campo/Lake Morena Planning Group candidates
held on September 29th,  where community members posed tough questions
for candidates on two opposing slates, plus independents with sharply different
visions for future growth.

BATTLE OF THE WATCHDOGS: WILL THE REAL CONSUMER CHAMPION PLEASE STAND UP?

 

By Miriam Raftery

Anderson
Lutz

October 10, 2008 (Assemblyman Joel Anderson considers himself a watchdog for taxpayers.  His opponent, Ray Lutz, founded a citizens’ watchdog group.  Both claim to represent the public interest.  The differences in their views reflect a core question being asked more and more amid today’s challenging economic times:  just what is the proper role of government?

October Poll - Should Congress approve a $700 billion bailout of failing financial institutions?

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OBAMA OPENS NEW OFFICE IN EAST SAN DIEGO

By Miriam Raftery

Photos by Leon Thompson

October 1, 2008 (San Diego) - The Obama-Biden campaign hosted a presidential debate-watching party to kick-off the opening of a new campaign office at 1744 Euclid Street in East San Diego. 

“We’ve had a larger than expected turnout,” Vince Hall, spokesperson for Obama for President in San Diego County told East County Magazine.  “We’ve had more than 500 volunteers who signed up to support our campaign tonight.”

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