Archive for the 'Past District 4 Race' Category

27
Dec
10

Council Rep Schaaf Opens Shop Soon

In a year-end message, incoming District 4 Rep Libby Schaaf has invited everyone to the city-wide inauguration.  All the newly elected officials, including Schaaf, will be sworn in next Monday at 11am, at the Fox Theater.  The event is free and open to Oaklanders, on a first-come, first-served basis.

Meanwhile, the transition seems to be moving swimmingly.  Jean Quan is focused on staffing up the Oakland mayoral team over the holidays, effectively handing District 4 to Schaaf.  We have also seen Schaaf dipping her toes in the water, by addressing a safety matter or two on the local Montclair Safety & Improvement Council (MSIC) message board.

Starting January 3rd, Rep Schaaf will be located on the second floor at City Hall.  She’s available at lschaaf@oaklandnet.com or (510) 238-7004.  Her council aide, Jenny Feinberg, may be reached anytime at jfeinberg@oaklandnet.com.

06
Nov
10

First Ranked Choice Votes In!

Ranked choice elections are so interesting.

Although the results are unofficial, the District 4 Council seat will surely be filled by Libby Schaaf.  She garnered over half the vote (52.31%), followed by Jill Broadhurst (30.44%) and Daniel Swafford (17.24%) respectively.

While ranked-choices haven’t changed the District 4 outcome, they reveal the playing field as promised years ago — when we voted for and approved this new methodology.  In the first round, Libby Schaaf earned 42 percent and ran 1.9x ahead of Jill Broadhurst.  After the next choices were counted, she reached a majority of votes with a slightly smaller 1.7x lead.

Meanwhile, there’s an upset brewing in the Oakland Mayoral race from ranked choices.  Don Perata had the most first-place votes, without a majority.  When the next choices were counted from other candidates, things changed.  Our outgoing District 4 Council Rep, Jean Quan, received that majority (51.03%) with Perata behind her (48.91%).  Third-place finisher and Council Rep Rebecca Kaplan’s voters picked Quan by 3:1 ratio.  Got that?

We’re keeping a close watch, as the remaining ballots get counted this weekend — and hope you do, too.

03
Nov
10

District 4 Council Race: Libby In Lead

In yesterday’s District 4 City Council race, some 42 percent voted for Libby Schaaf and 22 percent voted for Jill Broadhurst.  Since no candidate received more than 50 percent of the first-choice vote, there will now be a ranked choice run-off.  We’ll know the outcome and official winner by Friday, at the latest.

With 100% of the 13,323 votes cast, here’s how all seven candidates fared:

  • Jill Broadhurst — 22.42%
  • Jason Gillen — 2.56%
  • Ralph Kanz — 4.12%
  • Clinton Killian — 5.81%
  • Libby Schaaf — 42.36%
  • Melanie Shelby — 11.47%
  • Daniel Swafford — 11.26%

Also in District 4, Oakland Board of Education representative Gary Yee garnered 69.43% of the vote and bested his opponent Benjamin Visnick, with 30.57%. Some 11,849 voted in this race.

30
Oct
10

Money Politics Comes to City Council Campaign

In an Oakland election season where candidates have attacked mayoral frontrunner Don Perata about the influence of money in city politics, campaign finance debates are now trickling down to the City Council level.

The latest salvos come from three of the seven candidates vying to replace District 4’s Jean Quan, who has represented the Montclair, Laurel and Dimond neighborhoods on City Council since 2003. Quan, who is running for mayor, has made the sharpest criticisms of Perata’s campaign spending. Now, it’s the candidates looking to replace Quan on City Council that are crying foul in the days leading up to the Nov. 2 election.

On Oct. 27, Libby Schaaf’s District 4 campaign sent out a press release singling out approximately $44,000 worth of campaign mailings that the Rental Housing Association of Northern Alameda County PAC sent on behalf of her opponent, Jill Broadhurst. Schaaf described these mailers as an attempt by Joe O’Donohue, a San Francisco developer who wants to build a condominium near Oakland’s Lake Merritt, to sway the election.

“It’s unfortunate that outside interests, and in particular a single San Francisco developer, are trying to influence our elections in Oakland,” Schaaf said.

O’Donohue’s $44,000 independent expenditure endorsing Broadhurst means that District 4 Council candidates no longer have to abide by campaign spending limits set by the Oakland Campaign Reform Law (OCRA). Schaaf, who criticized the mailers, said she intends to abide by the pledge that candidates made to spend less than $116,000 in the campaign. She has raised $102,000 from donors, and will receive $14,000 in matching funding from the city for abiding by OCRA spending limits.

“I look forward to continuing to run a positive, issue-based campaign that focuses on Oaklanders, and the issues that matter to them,” added Schaaf.

Broadhurst will not receive $20,000 in public financing since she has already spent more than $20,000 of her own money in the campaign. But she criticized Schaaf and other candidates for accepting public campaign money at a time when Oakland faces serious budget shortfalls. She characterized her decision to bypass matching city funding and to finance her campaign through private donations, including her own, as a sign of fiscal responsibility.

“I cannot in good conscience take taxpayer-funded money to pay for my campaign while police officers are being laid off, roads are crumbling, and we are reducing hours at our libraries,” Broadhurst explained.

Schaaf disputed Broadhurst’s characterization of public funding, describing it instead as a “clean elections practice” that organizations like the League of Women Voters have supported. Schaaf pointed out that all 440 of her campaign donors have contributed less than $700 each.

Meanwhile, another candidate has criticized Schaaf as the beneficiary of financial support from an outside source. District 4 candidate Ralph Kanz, a former chair of the Oakland Public Ethics Commission, criticized the mailer Alameda County Central Democratic Committee (ACCDC) sent to voters featuring former Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown endorsing Schaaf. According to Kanz, the mailer did not include a notice providing certain information about who has paid for it, a requirement under Oakland law.

“I believe it is imperative for everyone to follow campaign laws,” Kanz declared. “Without this required information, the voters are denied a transparent and ethical election process.”

Kanz said it’s possible that the ACCDC mailer violated state election laws as well. The California Secretary of State has not received a “late filing” from the ACCDC regarding the campaign mailer supporting Schaaf. Kanz said that it’s possible that the ACCDC sent its filings to Oakland’s City Clerk and Secretary of State by fax on Oct. 29, but if not, it would represent another campaign violation.

“It’s ironic that two days after Ms. Schaaf condemned an opponent [Broadhurst] who received the benefit of a legally reported independent expenditure, she has benefited from a mailer that violates OCRA and possibly state law as well,” said Kanz. “I will be filing complaints concerning any and all violations surrounding this mailer.”

Schaaf responded that she had not seen the mailer, but that she was expecting the Democratic Party to communicate its endorsement of her to its members—registered Democrats—something that she says is allowed under campaign finance laws.

“Organizations are allowed to make communications to their members, which are not counted as an independent expenditure,” she said. “ If an organization like the California Nurses Association—which also endorsed me—wanted to communicate that to their union members, they would be allowed to do that.”

City Council elections have an additional wrinkle this year, as Oakland votes for the first time under the ranked-choice voting system. Voters in District 4 will be able to rank their top three choices among the seven candidates, and it’s almost certain no candidate will receive a majority in the first tally of votes. It will likely come down to counting voters’ second or third choices for the District 4 seat, and it could take several days to determine the winner.

27
Sep
10

Poll shows Quan Leads in 94611

A robo-poll conducted by a San Francisco startup aimed at showing off its new Internet phone system has revealed an interesting picture of Oakland’s mayoral race.

A Still from "DREAM A Better Oakland"

While Don Perata leads in most zip codes, Jean Quan’s 94611 base picks her over the competition by a couple of percentage points. Also, the robo-poll called 30,000 likely voters across Oakland, and received 1,435 responses. The machine got the highest number of responses (223) in 94611.

In other campaign news, what do you think of Quan’s new campaign video? This is what the communications director for the Perata campaign had to say: “You would have expected that, given her previous advice on seat-belt safety, she would have insisted the young gentlemen in the back of her car wear their seat-belts. It’s not the first time Jean Quan has been exposed for, “do as I say, not what I do”. Demanding that public employees make pension contributions, for example…




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