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RANKING MEMBER OF HOUSE VETERANS AFFAIRS COMMITTEE AND SAN DIEGO IRAQ VETERAN CHALLENGE ROMNEY’S RECORD ON VETERANS ISSUES

 
June 4, 2012 (Washington D.C.) – Presidential candidate Mitt Romney voted to slash veterans benefits while Governor of Massachusetts and has proposed changes at the federal level that could be harmful to veterans. That’s the message sent to media this week by the Truman Project, a national security leadership organization based in Washington D.C. 

 

BRIAN JONES APPOINTED ASSISTANT REPUBLICAN LEADER

 

June 4, 2012 (Sacramento) -- Assemblyman Brian Jones, R-Santee, today announced that Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway, R-Tulare, appointed him as Assistant Republican Leader on the Assembly Republican Leadership Team.
"I am eager to continue working with Republican Leader Conway to get Californians back to work. The most important issues facing our state are jobs and the economy - we have to remove the regulatory and tax burdens from California's middle class and release our creative energy and entrepreneurial spirit. California can be the Golden State again."

 

SAN DIEGO MAYORAL RACE: RESOURCE GUIDE TO ALL CANDIDATES

June 3, 2012 (San Diego) –East County Magazine requested interviews with the four top contenders in the San Diego Mayoral race. Two responded.   Read our interview with Congressman Bob Filner here: http://eastcountymagazine.org/node/7210 and with Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher here:http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/node/9877 .   We also covered the Politifest debate featuring Fletcher, Filner, and several lesser known candidates here: http://eastcountymagazine.org/node/7305

Additional resources that we recommend to learn about all of the mayoral candidates include: 

SOCIAL MEDIA WARS: NEW LOCAL PAC TARGETS PRO-CORPORATE CANDIDATES IN SAN DIEGO

By Miriam Raftery

Taking a page from the independent expenditure playbook that torpedoed John Kerry’s presidential campaign, a San Diego-based PAC, Much Better Choices, is taking aim at  corporate-backed candidates in a series of online video ads. Lacking the funding of corporate-backed campaigns, Much Better Choices has launched its scathing assault ads via social networking sites—swiftly going viral with efforts to “Swiftboat” local corporatist candidates.

The site offers online activists “instant –access technological arsenals” to send out videos such as one with pigs feeding at a trough, targeting “lobbyist turned Congressman Brian Bilbray."

READER’S EDITORIAL: EL CAJON POLICE OFFICERS’ ASSOCIATION IS AGAINST PROPOSITION D

 

By Bryan Zmijewski,  President, El Cajon Police Officers Association

“Most alarming is the ECPD patrol staffing levels. At times, there may only be four police officers working the street…The El Cajon Council wants more power, yet they choose to handcuff the police chief...The ECPOA fears that this will continue, especially if the current city council is allowed to have the additional power that they crave.”—Bryan Zmijewski

The people behind Proposition D say changing El Cajon from a general law city to a charter city will save tax payer money by giving more control over decision making to the city council. Charter city status may be appropriate for other municipalities. We don't believe it would be appropriate in El Cajon at this time with our current city council in power.

We don't believe the city council, in its current form, has the experience, insight or forward thinking ability to handle any more power than it already has. More power for this city council? One council member just resigned as a result of a pending FBI investigation, reminding us about what happened not too long ago in the City of Bell.

ASSEMBLY CANDIDATE HURLEY AIMS TO BUILD GOOD-PAYING JOBS AND STRENGTHEN PUBLIC EDUCATION

 

By Miriam Raftery

“With California’s new `top two’ primary system, only two candidates will advance to a November run-off.  I’m running against two Republicans, so it’s important for Democrats to vote on Tuesday.” – Pat Hurley, candidate, 71st Assembly District

June 2, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – Pat Hurley has worked in factories and on railroads. He’s turned around troubled businesses in mobile electronics, finance and sales. He’s led efforts as a nonprofit executive to create job-training programs, help low-income communities, and forge a sustainable future for our region. Now he wants to bring his experience—along with Midwest, middle class values—to the state capitol.

Hurley is the only Democrat running for the new  71st Assembly district (formerly the 77th), which includes nearly all of East County. The seat is currently held by Republican Brian Jones. Another Republican, engineer John McLaughlin from Temecula, is also in the race. 

TOO BUSY TO VOTE TUESDAY? VOTE EARLY ON SATURDAY

 
Registrar Office Open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
 
June 1, 2012 (San Diego) --  If you want to vote in the June 5 Presidential Primary Election, but your schedule won’t allow you to visit your polling place Tuesday, take advantage of the Saturday voting hours at the Registrar of Voters office.

 

FLETCHER PLEDGES “INDEPENDENT VOICE” IN MAYORAL RACE

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 1, 2012 (San Diego) –In an exclusive interview with East County Magazine, Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher laid out his vision for our region’s future. His priorities are to “make San Diego a leader in 21st century jobs” by rebuilding the economy base,” improve public education, and rebuild infrastructure to create more walkable and livable communities,  Fletcher told ECM.    

A retired Marine and decorated Iraq war veteran who has worked in counter-intelligence, Fletcher has also laid out plans to help returning veterans on issues ranging from homelessness to jobs.

 “I believe it’s important to have open and transparent government,” says Fletcher, who recently made headlines by announcing that he’s left the Republican party to run as an independent, shortly after the GOP endorsed Carl DeMaio for mayor. 

RISING STARS TO GADFLIES IN THE 79TH ASSEMBLY CONTEST

 

 
(Analysis for East County Magazine)
 
By E.A. Barrera
 
May 31, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) -- With only days left in the 2012 primary season, no contest reflects the nature of modern California politics better then the race in the 79th Assembly District. The new California Primary system is in place this year, forcing all candidates of any party to run in what are now quasi-municipal elections. No single party may field a candidate for the fall, and the top two vote-getters of the primary-- no matter the party--will face each other in a run-off election this November.

 

JUDICIAL TEMPERAMENT? FACEBOOK POSTS, LAWSUIT RAISE JUDGMENT ISSUES IN CONTENTIOUS SUPERIOR COURT RACE

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 30, 2012 (San Diego) –Accusations are flying in the contentious race for San Diego Superior Court seat 25.   Candidate Jim Miller has been removed as a Judge Pro Tem by the Superior Court—and now he’s crying foul.

Miller claims he’s a victim of dirty politics. He’s accused one of his opponents, Robert Amador, of involvement in his ouster, a claim denied by Amador, who previously sued Miller over ballot statement claims. 

Miller maintains he knows of no legitimate reason for the court to remove him from its list of approved Judges Pro Tem.

Posts on Miller’s Facebook page, however reveal  some intemperate remarks made about cases he heard while serving as a Judge Pro Tem--as well as barbed criticisms of local attorneys, judges, and parties in cases he handled as a lawyer.

NEWSPAPER CHARGES VARGAS USED TAXPAYER FUNDS FOR MAILERS WHILE IGNORNING CONSTITUENTS AMID CONGRESSIONAL BID


“This is exactly the kind of behavior that infuriates voters and must be stopped.” – Denise Ducheny, former state Senator and current 51st Congressional district candidate

 

May 31, 2012 (San Diego)– State Senator Juan Vargas is under fire again, this time in an article from The Press Enterprise, published yesterday. The article catalogued the actions of Vargas and his Senate office, who stand accused of using taxpayer dollars to fund mail pieces aimed at helping his candidacy.  Vargas is now running for the 51st Congressional District seat, which spans San Diego and Imperial Counties, seeking to replace Bob Filner who is retiring to run for Mayor.

PETERS MAKES CASE FOR ELECTABILITY IN NEW 52ND CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT

 
In exclusive interview with East County Magazine, Peters talks about key issues in our region
 
By Miriam Raftery
 
May 30, 2012 (San Diego) –“I’m the candidate with the best record of working across the aisle to get things done,”  says Scott Peters, a Democrat. He is  one of ten candidates vying for the new 52nd Congressional district seat currently held by Republican Brian Bilbray.

STEINER BRINGS A “NEW APPROACH” TO THE RACE FOR 77TH ASSEMBLY

 
By Janis Mork
 
May 30, 2012 (San Diego)- One of four candidates will succeed Nathan Fletcher when he leaves the Assembly. Republican Dustin Steiner is one candidate who hopes to represent the newly redrawn 77th District, which includes inland communities such as Tierrasanta, Scripps Ranch, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo, as well as coastal communities in Del Mar. View a map of the district: http://www.co.san-diego.ca.us/voters/Eng/maps/AssemblySDCountyMap.jpg

CONGRESSWOMAN SUSAN DAVIS COSPONSORS THE VOTER EMPOWERMENT ACT

 
May 29, 2012 (Washington, D.C.) --  More than 3 million Americans had difficulty voting in the 2008 election for a number of reasons. To improve our voting system, Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) joined her Democratic colleagues to introduce the Voter Empowerment Act to protect the right of Americans to choose their government.
 
The Voter Empowerment Act includes language from two Davis bills – the Universal Vote by Mail Act, which would eliminate barriers to voting by absentee ballot and the Election Integrity Act, which would prohibit top elections officials from participating in the political campaigns whose results they oversee.

REGISTRAR MISTAKENLY POSTS TEST RESULTS LABELED "EARLY VOTE COUNTS"

 Editor's note:  After posting a story on an early election "lead" based on information posted by the San Diego Registrar on the 50th Congressional District race, we received a full list of purported "early results" from all San Diego races that casts serious doubt on its authenticity. It included a July '76 date and results in other races that seemed impossible, such as Senator Feinstein with less than 2% of the vote, Bonnie Dumanis in first place in the Mayoral race (polls have showed her trialing other leading candidates), and obscure candidates leading well-known and well-financed contenders in several other prominent races.

Barry Jantz at San Diego Rostra advised ECM that some Republican candidates also viewed the results and were contacting him with questions. The Registrar's office later confirmed with Jantz that the "results" were in fact a test mistakenly posted online, he said.The Registrar has now taken down the site.

NEED MORE INFO ON CANDIDATES AND INITIATIVES? CHECK OUT THESE 2 WEBSITES

 
May 27, 2012 (San Diego) – If you’re looking for a source of detailed information about candidates and initiatives on your ballot, two handy sites aret www.SmartVoter.org and www.vote-smart.org.   
 
The SmartVoter site was created by the League of Women Voters of California and is now available in several other states.  Enter your address and zip at www.SmartVoter.org to view your sample ballot, with arguments for and against ballot initiatives as well as information candidates have written about themselves and links to many useful sites related to the election.

DUCHENY BEATS VARGAS IN PRE-PRIMARY DONATIONS FOR CONGRESSIONAL RACE

 
Ducheny’s Donations Come Primarily from Individuals versus Special Interests
 
May 26, 2012 (San Diego)-- FEC Reports filed yesterday by top congressional candidates in the 51st showed that Denise Moreno Ducheny outraised her primary opponentState Senator Juan Vargas, for the second time since she entered the race. Ducheny raised over $52,780 dollars, while her main opponent raised only $46,344.  Almost 85% of the money Ducheny has raised to date has come from individuals, most of whom live and vote in the 51st Congressional District.  By contrast, just under half of Vargas’ contributions have come from Political Action Committees, like the insurance and banking lobbies.

JUDICIAL CANDIDATES MAKE THEIR CASES FOR SUPERIOR COURT SEAT AT FOOTHILLS BAR FORUM

 

By Miriam Raftery and Sierra Robinson

May 24, 2012 (La Mesa) – They make life or death decisions.  Superior Court judges may determine who goes to prison—and for how long.  They hear civil lawsuits,  juvenile and family court cases. Their decisions can bring  victims closure or tear families apart—and their rulings may set long-lasting precedents. 

Yesterday, three candidates vying for San Diego Superior Court Seat 25 presented their arguments why each contends he is the best qualified for the bench. The forum was presented by Foothills Bar Association at BJ’s restaurant in La Mesa. 

DANON SEEKS TO SHAKE UP A STAGNANT BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

 

By E.A. Barrera

May 23, 2012 (San Diego) -- Steve Danon has been active in Republican politics since his days as College Republican president at San Diego State University. He has worked for Republicans ranging from Supervisors Dianne Jacob and Ron Roberts to Congressman Brian Bilbray.

He is one of a new generation of youthful conservative leaders emerging in San Diego that include Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher and City Councilman Kevin Faulconer (both of whom have endorsed Danon).

ALPINE VOTERS TO WEIGH SCHOOL BOND MEASURE PROP H

May 23, 2012 (Alpine) – Alpine voters will decide on the June ballot whether  nearly $12 million in bond monies should be authorized to fund the Alpine Union School District.  The District faces a half million dollars in annual budget cuts due to falling property tax revenues and anticipated cuts in state funding. 

The average homeowner would pay an estimated $4 more per month if Prop H passes.

Backers seek local control of education funds that can’t be taken away by the state. Funds could be used to improve facilities for safety, energy efficiency, disabled access and to update classroom computers and technology, as well as attract and retain quality teachers.

CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE LORI SALDAÑA SHARES VIEWS ON JOBS, HEALTHCARE, ENERGY POLICIES, VETERANS AND SENIOR ISSUES, AND THE FIGHT FOR WOMEN’S RIGHTS

 
By Miriam Raftery
 
In an exclusive interview with East County Magazine, 52nd Congressional District candidate Lori Saldaña offered in-depth perspectives on top national issues—including the impacts of federal policies being felt in San Diego and East County. 
 
May 21, 2012 (San Diego) – Lori Saldaña knows how to be a tough competitor. A field hockey athlete  in college and outdoor enthusiast who led hikes through San Diego’s backcountry, she became our region’s Sierra Club President and sued to enforce environmental laws.  As an educator, she created successful job training programs. In Sacramento, she chaired  powerful committees and pushed through landmark legislation that she authored--including AB 32, California’s major measure to combat global warming and  SB 1, the million solar roofs initiative.  President Bill Clinton appointed her to co-chair a committee on water quality improvements for 10 U.S.-Mexico border states. Scrappy and determined,  she’s earned her reputation as a fighter with a winning  record.

REGION’S COMMUNITY COLLEGE CHIEFS WARN OF ‘DISMANTLING’ CUTS IF TAX VOTE FAILS

 
Local campuses face $27 million hit without passage of November initiative

May 20, 2012 (San Diego) -- The heads of the region’s six community college districts issued a tsunami warning of sorts Wednesday, saying a new wave of funding cuts will further cripple the colleges if voters reject the governor’s November tax initiative.
 

HUNTER, BILBRAY AND ISSA VOTE TO WEAKEN PROTECTIONS FOR NATIVE AMERICAN WOMEN & OTHER MINORITIES VICTIMIZED BY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 18, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – The National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) sharply criticized HR 4970, which passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a narrow 222-205 vote.  The House version of the Violence Against Women Act contained amendments that weaken protections for domestic violence victims on tribal lands, as well as for immigrant and gay women.

It's a shame that this so-called violence against women bill could actually cause violence to women," said Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego), who voted against the measure. "This bill is outright dangerous."

But San Diego’s three Republican Congressmen—Duncan Hunter, Brian Bilbray and Darrell Issa—all voted for the House measure. 

9 CANDIDATES VIE FOR BILBRAY’S SEAT IN CONGRESS

 
May 17, 2012 (San Diego) -- Nine candidates are in the running for the redrawn 52nd Congressional district seat currently held by Republican Brian Bilbray. Eight of them answered a detailed questionnaire provided by the Pomerado News--all but Bilbray himself, who failed to respond to questions.

 

HERNANDEZ SEEKS TO BRING “FRESH SMARTS” TO NEW 77TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT

May 17, 2012 (San Diego) – With Nathan Fletcher leaving the Assembly to run for Mayor, the race is on till fill the open seat.  Democrat  Ruben “R. J.” Hernandez is among four candidates seeking to represent the newly redistricted 77th, which include inland communities such as Tierrasanta, Scripps Ranch, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo and as well as areas as far west as Del Mar Heights. 

View a map of the new district: http://www.co.san-diego.ca.us/voters/Eng/maps/AssemblySDCountyMap.jpg

 “I’m pro-labor AND pro-business,” Hernandez states on his website.  “Right now, we need jobs."

9 CANDIDATES IN RUNNING FOR BILBRAY'S SEAT IN CONGRESS

 

May 17, 2012 (San Diego) -- Nine candidates are in the running for the redrawn 52nd Congressional district seat currently held by Republican Brian Bilbray. Eight of them answered a detailed questionnaire provided by the Pomerado News--all but Bilbray himself, who failed to respond to questions.

MEET THE JUDGES: JUDICIAL CANDIDATES FORUM TODAY AT NOON AT BJ'S IN LA MESA

 
May 23, 2012 (La Mesa) – Judicial positions are among the most important and influential in the United States. Judges’ decisions have long-lasting impacts, yet many voters have little information on which to base decisions at the ballot box.
 
On Wednesday, May 23, the Foothills Bar Association invites the media, attorneys, and the public to attend a Judicial Candidates Forum at B.J’s Restaurant in Grossmont Center, in La Mesa where the candidates for the Superior Court (Office No. 25) Deputy District Attorney Robert Amador, Attorney James Miller, and Deputy City Attorney George Schaefer will speak and answer questions from the audience.

SAN DIEGO MAYORAL CANDIDATES TO DEBATE AT MAY 18 LUNCHEON

 
May 17, 2012 (San Diego) -- The City of San Diego’s four major mayoral candidates will square off in a debate on May 18 during Family Health Centers of San Diego’s Spirit of the Barrio Luncheon. Congressman Bob Filner, Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, and Councilmember Carl DeMaio are confirmed to participate.

MEDIA INSIDERS TO SPEAK AT EAST COUNTY DEMOCRATIC CLUB MAY 17

May 14, 2012 (El Cajon) –How can you help “take back the media” and help get messages on campaigns or other issues out to the public?  Two experienced media insiders, who are also political activists, will share their techniques at the East County Democratic Club on Wednesday, May 17.

 Mike Thaller is a former television and film director specializing in commercials and educational Films. He is currently director of media relations for the San Diego Democratic Party

 John Mattes is an attorney and investigative reporter.  Known as “The Investigative Guy”, he has worked as an investigator for Fox TV news as well as an investigative counsel  for U.S. Senator John Kerry, as well as holidng public office as a Supervisor in Wisconsin.

JOHN L BROOKS SEEKS TO OCCUPY 51ST DISTRICT CONGRESSIONAL SEAT

 
By Nadin Abbott
 
Vote your passion, not your fears.” -- John L. Brooks motto
 
May 14, 2012 (San Diego)—Updated May 17, 2012 --John Brooks has set his sights on the 51st Congressional seat held by Bob Filner. He is running against Denise Moreno Ducheny and Juan Vargas on the Democratic side. Why is he running? He was inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement, and knew that the next step was to step to the plate and run for office.
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