Democrat Shawn Stern has pledged not to raise money to win the nomination of his party to take on Rep. Elton Gallegly. Instead he is suggesting better ways that his supporters can spend their money locally. Watch the video for details.
Shawn, are we getting to see letters to the editor soon?
Jim Dantona had a long profile of his campaign themes in The Acorn last Friday. His opponent Mark Lunn started his campaign much earlier but Jim Dantona has been working hard to catch up.
He will be announcing that The Ventura County Firefighters Union will be supporting him and I have heard several other prominent announcements will be announced in the next few weeks.
I want a Clerk-Recorder that will work to register more voters and make it easier for them to vote. The legitimacy of our elections is dependent on voter participation. Mark Lunn has many sections of his website with buzzwords about safety, integrity, and character but he doesn't do much to show me he will work with other people to make sure more people participate. I look forward to him addressing this major issue.
Let's see which candidate does the best job of proving they will work to register young people and other underrepresented groups. If a candidate is satisfied with the local voter turnout they aren't qualified for this position.
Democrat Susan Jordan has announced that State Assembly Speaker Karen Bass has endorsed her. Her endorsement might not be important to voters in this area but Karen Bass can help Jordan raise money from state level interest groups. Das Williams has reported more money thus far but this should help Jordan.
Click on continue reading for the full press release.
The video above is a great program the local SEIU does of bringing in candidates to learn from their union members about the challenges of their jobs. In this video candidates for Sheriff Geoff Dean (R) and Dennis Carpenter (R) along with State Assembly Candidates Das Williams (D) and Susan Jordan (D) speak with local workers. I am glad they are doing nonpartisan outreach to inform candidates about important issues.
Democrat Marie Panec is running for the nomination of her party to take on Rep. Elton Gallegly. Democrats are looking to catch Gallegly unprepared as he hasn't exactly been energetic lately as evidenced by his lack of town hall meetings and other events where the general public can ask him questions. Obviously Gallegly remains a favorite to win because of his resources and status as an incumbent.
Marie Panec first has to defeat Tim Allison and Shawn Stern in June. I don't know which candidate I will support but so far I have not been excited much by their ability to bring Gallegly's record to the wider public. Barack Obama won this district yet Gallegly doesn't seem to be worried about who has given him money or his voting record. These candidates would be well served if they started getting letters to the editor written now.
Republican Mike Judge has declared he is running for a seat on the Simi Valley City Council.
The two current incumbents Glen Becerra (R) and Michelle Foster (R) have declared they are running again. So far that means there are four candidates running for two seats. That number includes Democrat Mitch Green.
I expect the top issues will include frequent topics like public safety and development issues but I also expect the city budget, pension reform, and the proposed expansion of the Simi Valley landfill. What other issues do you think will dominate the campaign?
In related news the Simi Valley POA claims the total compensation ( cash and benefits ) is $53,745.08 . I sent a request to the city asking for the number but I haven't heard back. Most of the council members work many more hours than is commonly expected for what is labeled a part time job. It would be great if the city posted the total costs online in an easy to access format. Same goes for other local boards.
I post the party membership of people running for nonpartisan seats. I do know the ballot won't include this information but I figure if you are reading a local political blog this is the type of information you would like to know. The candidates, activists, and interest groups all know. You should have the same knowledge. I appreciate that the internet has helped to give us the same information that only insiders used to have access to and I like the fact you can quickly support a campaign by becoming a fan.
Steven Hintz has announced that he has the support of previous Former Ventura County Treasurer-Tax Collector Hal Pittman for his campaign for the same position. Click on continue reading for the press release.
I didn't think at first the race would be a very competitive but the top two candidates look like they will be drawing support from across Century County. I also understand that Warren Harwood announced he is running for this position. I will believe it when he turns in the signatures and puts up a website.
Tim Allison is going to officially announce he is running for congress this weekend. Click on continue reading for details.
My biggest criticism of the three Democrats running is that so far they haven't been making the case to regular voters why Rep. Gallegly needs to leave congress. I want a candidate that inspires their supporters to write letters to newspapers and campaigns as if the election is only a few weeks away.
Scott Brown in Massachusetts won for many reasons. Among them is the fact that he came across as willing to work hard. Is Marie Panec willing to stand on street corners waving her sign with a group of supporters? Will Tim Allison campaign at the upcoming streetfair in Simi Valley? How far across the district is Shawn Stern literally willing to run?
Voters won't believe you are willing to fight for them until they see you fighting for yourself.
When Democrats take the fight to Gallegly they will start rallying the activist base. They won't be rallying the base much by telling them why they should spend time going after each other.
Shawn Stern recently spoke at a progressive club meeting at Thousand Oaks High School and earned some coverage from their high school newspaper. Obviously many of the students won't be able to vote but club members are planning to get involved with campaigns. I am glad that candidates want to involve young people in the process and it would be great if all of the candidates found ways to meet with young people.
Here is a quote from the article:
It is rare for anyone other than Progressive Club members to walk through the doorway of D-6 at lunchtime on Thursdays, yet this particular Thursday was different. On Feb. 2, Shawn Stern, 32-year-old UCLA graduate, shared Robert Haar's history classroom with Club members.
Here is the rest of the the article from their high school newspaper.
Shawn Stern has pledged not to raise money in the primary against the other Democrats. To be competitive he is going to need to earn media coverage constantly. The other Democrats aren't getting their name mentioned often in East County newspapers at this time so we will see how his strategy pays off.
Mark, my request is that candidates for this office hold a one on one debate online without a moderator. Each candidate can post their replies to each other and ask any questions they see fit. Let me know as we get closer if you are interested.
When I went to his website I checked out his endorsement page and I was really impressed. Although he has been running for longer than Jim Dantona that doesn't fully explain his long list of supporters. Mark Lunn served on The Ventura County Republican Central Committee that isn't too surprising he has the support of many Republican officeholders. He has been endorsed by 4 members of the Simi Valley City Council which isn't too surprising by itself as Simi Valley officials seem to make it a hobby to endorse candidates. But what is surprising is that past Dantona ally Barbra Williamson is on the list of his supporters.
It will be interesting in the next few weeks to see if Jim Dantona can get the support of prominent Democratic officeholders and if he can make a case he has bipartisan support.
Das Williams (D) is running against Susan Jordan (D) for the Democratic nomination to replace Pedro Nava (D) in the State Assembly. The district is generally considered to be a safe district for Democrats but the winner will face either Mike Stoker (R) or Daniel Goldberg (R) in November. I am doubting that Daniel Goldberg will gather the necessary signatures required to get on the ballot.
On many core issues the two Democrats agree with each other although the major distinction is their positions on an offshore oil drilling agreement that other sources have explained with much more detail. They largely agree upon issues that are important to groups like The California Organization of Women (NOW) support. I am impressed Das Williams was able to secure the endorsement from NOW when he is running against a woman. Obviously his involvement in NOW greatly contributed to this endorsement but that doesn't diminish how it will look on his mailers.
What important endorsements aren't claimed yet for these candidates? Do any of the remaining groups or individuals matter to you?
Debates between candidates wanting to be a judge can be really strange because the candidates usually try to leave the impression they will be impartial in all cases if they are elected. I don't know if my readers see the value in reading an interview by me with the candidates but if you do let me know by posting a comment. If there is interest I will be request an interview with the two candidates.
Frequent guest blogger Martin Breen is back with another entry. Martin, by now I know what you are against, but I don't know what you support. Are there any financial regulations pending in congress that you support? Do you like Arianna Huffington's push to move money to local banks? Are you against the tax on some banks that administration has supported?
I am also what local candidates you support.
Here is his latest entry:
The Adventures of Fedman and the Temple of Doom Otherwise Known as AIG
By Martin Breen
If you hear our Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner, tell it, he and his banker friends saved the world on a blustery fall day in September 2008 when they bailed out AIG and saved us from certain doom. Good old Timmy recently told this tale to one of the Congressional Oversight Committees, namely that he needed to bailout AIG as its bankruptcy would have caused the collapse of the financial markets. Talk about grandiose. There's nothing more surreal than watching this Spock wannabe puff out his chest and suggest how he saved the world. Never mind the fact that he and the bankers caused the crisis. Indeed, if Superman caused most the problems that he was trying to fix, then I don't think anyone would think he was very "super." Someone needs to give Timmy a reality check - you're not a superhero, you're the villain.
Click on continue reading for the rest of the guest blog entry.
Community Activist Jay Kapitz is asking you for help lobbying the Federal Government over Rocketdyne. Jay has been a frequent supporter of this blog over the years by posting comments, writing guest blog entries when he went to DC for the inauguration, and keeping me informed over local grassroots politics.
Here is his latest guest blog entry:
Rocketdyne Clean Up Is a done issue
By Jay Kapitz
There is a very serious situation that affects my community of Oak Park in Ventura County.
The Santa Susana Field Laboratory, currently owned by the Boeing Company, is located approximately five miles from Oak Park. A partial nuclear meltdown, thousands of rocket tests and decades of nuclear reactor development have left radioactive and chemical contamination at the site.
Click on continue reading for the rest of his guest blog entry.
UPDATED: Click on continue reading for the press release from Jeff Walker.
More candidates have entered the field to be the next Ventura County Treasurer-Tax Collector. With such a crowded field endorsements and ballot designations will be very important. I don't think the Republican Party will get involved with so many Republicans running but if a credible Democratic candidate emerges I expect VCDCC Chair Brian Leshon will take notice.
What are you looking for in a Treasurer-Tax Collector? Obviously I want someone that is competent and has relevant experience but I also want someone that won't be using the office to promote a their ideology at the expense of the public.
This year is going to be great for blog traffic. I have many races that the print media won't be covering much combined with candidates like Audra Strickland and Jim Dantona who always get massive attention.
Jim Dantona is running for Ventura County Clerk-Reporter. He has shown in the past he is a tough campaigner when he defeated an incumbent supervisor and then came close in a run-off to Peter Foy in a Republican district. His declared opponent is Supervisor Peter Foy's Chief of Staff Mark Lunn.
The Ventura County Clerk-Recorder is in charge of voter registration and running elections. I want to see a candidate that isn't on the central committee for their party and won't use the position to directly influence elections. I wouldn't mind if they resigned from their party and promised to rarely endorse candidates.
I also want to expand voter registration and Vote By Mail efforts across our communities including (but not limited to) minorities, young people, military members and senior citizens. My ideal candidate will rally young people on campuses to vote and see a major duty of theirs to increase voter turn out.
I will be following these candidates closely to see who offers us the clear choice. Jim Dantona has earned my respect for his energetic campaigning. Let's see if he will earn my vote.
In related news Peter Foy might be too busy to help Mark Lunn much. Check back in a few days to see why.
To all of the candidates: If you ever see a comment that is personally offensive or otherwise over the top send me an email to have it removed. I often remove comments and I don't post who requested me to delete the comment.
I normally give out the comment of the week award to someone that posts a comment on my blog that raises the level of political debate. Most times it is someone that keeps the debate classy and sometimes it is because of the comedic value. This time it is an exception because the comment was actually on Audra Strickland's Facebook Fanpage.
I have given pundit Scott Harris a hard time because he often represents himself as an independent and a moderate but he obviously leans more to the right on many issues on his Facebook discussion page. His post on Audra Strickland's fanpage though shows me he is willing to push politicians to elevate the dialogue:
I understand his concerns that the campaign between Audra Strickland and Linda Parks should focus on the issues instead of personalities. But with these two polarizing candidates I don't see that happening. Scott, pushing for a cleaner campaign has earned you comment of the week.
Steve Sojka is running for Mayor of Simi Valley and his young supporters are enthusiastic to say the least. I earlier issued a challenge to his music team to create a music video dedicated to Simi Valley and his music team quickly embraced the challenge.
Now a supporter of his has created an anime video using an online generator. Check out the video above.
Democrat Shawn Stern is running a novel campaign. He has pledged not to raise money for his primary campaign. To do so he is going to need to be creative to get his message out.
Last week he went to Rep. Gallegly's office to ask when the next town hall meeting was scheduled. If you are a frequent reader of this blog you know I have been a big critic of Gallegly's choice to not hold regular town hall meetings. Usually when I call they say they don't have his schedule or that they don't know of any future town hall meetings. After Gallegly's staff town Shawn Stern they didn't have anything on the calendar he went outside and officially announced he is running for congress.
Watch the video and then post a comment as feedback to his campaign. You don't need to register to comment but keep it classy.
Tim Allison is currently the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination judged by the money he has raised and the endorsements he has been announcing. Tim is running a traditional Democratic Primary campaign by getting endorsements from labor unions and focusing on the election in June.
I have not chosen who I will support for the Democratic nomination yet but I will support someone that shows us what type of general election campaign they will run by the way they campaign in the primary.
Democrats cannot afford to wait until after Labor Day to start getting attention from the press. They need to start offering voters an alternative to Gallegly now before it is too late.
I like what I see in Shawn's video. His campaign seems quixotic as of now but I am interested to see if he can turn his online supporters into activists that share his posts with others, write letters to newspapers, and show up to events.
1. Are you planning to post the answers to questions asked of you from your website Ask Shawn Stern ?
2. Will we see any letters from your supporters this week mentioning the themes of your announcement speech? If you aren't going to raise money you are going to need to get your message out to people that are highly likely to vote in a primary.
Tim Allison is running for the Democratic nomination to take on Rep. Elton Gallegly. His primary opponents are Marie Panec and Shawn Stern. He has just announced yet more endorsements. His newest supporters are Das Williams and Susan Jordan. What is surprising about this announcement is that Williams and Jordan are currently running against each other for the Democratic nomination to replace Assembly Member Pedro Nava in the 35th District.
Often candidates running for higher office don't want to get involved in other campaigns at the risk of alienating a group of supporters. But with Tim Allison doing so much better than the other candidates at raising money and getting endorsements they must have calculated it was worth it.
Democrat Ernest Morrell is dropping out of the race to replace Audra Strickland in the State Assembly. The frontrunners are now Ferial Masry (D) and Jeff Gorell (R) for the nominations of their parties.
Here is Ernest Morrell's message to his supporters:
Hey in 1966, it was still okay to talk like this on the floor of our
A revolution is coming -- a revolution which will be peaceful if we are
wise enough; compassionate if we care enough; successful if we are
fortunate enough -- But a revolution which is coming whether we will it
or not. We can affect its character; we cannot alter its
Click on continue reading for the rest of his message.
A lesson here is to not set a URL or Fanpage with a specific date. That way it can be used after the election is over. Barackobama.com will be useful for years to come but Barackobama08.com is next to worthless now and is up for sale.
Ernest, Best of luck in your future political plans. I am sure we will see more from you!
Local community activist Jay Kapitz has sent out an email detailing why he is supporting Linda Parks for supervisor. Jay often usually backs Democratic candidates but he is supporting Linda Parks who has been a Republican since 1996. It isn't a surprise he is supporting her as Linda Parks is a local hero to environmental activists.
Supports of Audra Strickland are making the strange sounding argument that Linda Parks is getting too much bipartisan support for this nonpartisan position. I am sure this will add to their evidence of her bipartisan support.
Send me an email if you would like to write a guest blog entry for my blog.
Support Linda Parks
By Jay Kapitz
Please join me in supporting Linda Parks for Ventura County 2nd District Supervisor. Supervisor Parks is being challenged by another Republican Audra Strickland. Strickland is the ultra-right wing conservative who recently relocated from her home in Simi Valley in order to run in this race. There are no Democrats running and it is with careful thought that I endorse and will be volunteering to support the re-election of Supervisor Parks. Supervisor Parks is endorsed by Democrats including State Senator Fran Pavley, Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, Ventura County Supervisor Kathy Long, activists Hank Lacayo, Sandy Emberland and many, many others. She is also endorsed by the Ventura County Deputy Sheriffs Association and the Ventura County Professional Firefighters Association.
Click on continue reading for the rest of his email.
Before you read this entry watch the Steve Sojka for Mayor Music Video.
Even though the election isn't until November the campaign to be the next Mayor of Simi Valley is inspiring people to get involved. I don't recall any other Simi Valley politician getting their own music video.
Here's some of the lyrics:
Graffiti is lame, Mr. Simi Valley is his name.
...cooler than monopoly.
Check out around 2:30 where he starts reading the names from this poll:
I am issuing this challenge to your campaign music team: Film a great song that extols the virtues of Simi Valley. Sing it to the tune of a recent hip hop song dedicated to a more famous city. Feel free to mention Happy Face Hill, The Duck Pond, and other area landmarks. Keep it nonpartisan and we can use it for years. Go inspire them!
If you do I will keep a blog entry from you at the top of my page for a month.
You have 72 hours to accept the offer but as long as you want to get them to write the lyrics and film it.
Steven Hintz is using Facebook to reach out to voters. I will be putting his Fanbox on every entry I post on the campaign to be the next county tax collector. If you are supporting another campaign send me the html ( or send me a message and I will help you create it) and I will post your Fanbox too.
I am excited that web 2.0 technologies are making it easier and easier to join a campaign. If you like a story I post on a candidate you can click become a fan on the end of the post and you will be connected to the campaign.
Steven Hintz has already loaned his own campaign $150,000 to get things started. It must be nice to be able to risk that type of money. Eric Ingemunson has a blog post that includes some biographical details that is a quick read. Eric, it looks like I know who you are going to be supporting. Send me a message if you want to include his Fanbox on your page too.
I heard of Steven Hintz's interest in politics from Natalie Panossian when she was organizing a Federalist Society event that he moderated. I am looking forward to all of the campaigns for local office. I will be covering the campaign for Ventura County Treasurer-Tax Collector more than any other local source of news.
I am impressed the Simi Valley / Moorpark Democrats have been holding debates on important topics. Rep. Elton Gallegly did not have a town hall meeting on healthcare insurance reform but local Democrats did. Putting together events where people can come and ask questions strengthens are democracy. Here is the details of their latest event:
The Simi Valley/Moorpark Democratic club has scheduled a debate on the war in Afghanistan 7pm. Wed., February l7 at the Simi Valley Library community room, 2969 Tapo Canyon Road.
Advocates on both sides of the issue will be represented, moderated by Daily News editor,
For more information, please call 805-210-6061
Barack Obama campaigned on winning the war in Afghanistan and said he would send more troops if necessary. It will be interesting to see what local Democrats believe.
The video above is of Sonny Klamerus talking about how he puts the smile on Happy Face Hill. He has been working on it and we can expect to see the Happy Face coming in over the next few weeks. Check out the comments he posted on the Happy Face Hill fanpage:
I was up on the hill Feb. 3rd to work on it for the first time in over a year. It was good to be there, though I must admit, I was nervous. I want to do it right and it was almost like starting over from the beginning. One can see a vague outline from a distance, but once on the hill it's not so evident where the line is. The Happy Face may have a slightly distorted cheek, but I will get back as soon as I can to make it right. The Heart on the other side was easier to work on and should look good right away. Yellowing should start in a few days. Much depends on the sun and clouds.
I am very appreciative of all the attention the hill has gotten. Simi is a welcoming community.
Sonny, the Happy Face originator
Ventura County Linda Parks is using Facebook to organize her supporters and keep them up to date with her campaign. State Assembly Member Audra Strickland also has a Facebook fansite. I am excited with the political applications of internet 2.0 technologies. If you are a candidate running for local office and need help with Facebook and other social network sites send me a message. I might not vote for you but I am willing to help connect voters to elected officials.
If you are working for Audra Strickland send me the html and I will post a fanbox for her too.
Last time I checked Audra Strickland had 408 fans and Linda Parks had 165 fans. Audra Strickland posted her site first so I will post updated numbers in a few weeks.
I will be covering these campaigns very closely. Keep forwarding me emails, fundraising events, and other campaign news. I won't use your name if you request I don't include it.
( Bob Huber along with former Mayor Cathie Wright, State Senator Tony Strickland, and former mayor Greg Stratton. Photo courtesy of Bob Huber.)
Correction : A reader sent in a clarification letting me know that Steve Sojka has not endorsed Audra Strickland before. Thanks for the correction.
Clarification: A reader asked what I meant when I said: "Because of his direct mail business I expect he will be able to maximize his campaign spending." Let me extend my thoughts. Steve Sojka runs an advertising business. I believe his knowledge of printing, graphic design, and shipping business will help him to reduce his costs of communicating directly with voters. I expect his business background will help him get more bang for his buck. Thanks for asking. If I wasn't clear to you I might have confused other people too.
Full Disclosure: A reader suggested it was noteworthy to mention I am a member of The Simi Valley Education Association (SEA), a group that I said might be an important endorsement. I am a member but I don't have any knowledge if the union is interested in endorsing in a city race. I haven't spoken to any of the union leaders about the issue.
The three most often mentioned candidates are Community College Board Trustee Bob Huber, Council Member Steve Sojka, and Council Member Barbra Williamson. My predictions for this year for this campaign is that only two of the three names mentioned above will run for mayor.
I was most surprised at Tony Strickland's endorsement. Tony Strickland is the leader of the Ventura County Republican Party and his endorsement will be influential in this campaign. Steve Sojka has frequently endorsed Tony Strickland and Audra Strickland for the various offices they have run for in the past.
Do you think Steve Sojka regrets helping them in their past races now that Tony Strickland is lending critical support to a formidable opponent? Maybe Linda Parks should call him and see if they want to endorse each other...
What other critical endorsements are out there for the candidates running?
Here's my list in no particular order:
1. Paul Miller
2. George Runner
3. The Simi Valley POA
4. Glen Becerra
5. Michelle Foster
6. Simi Valley School Board and Park Board Members
7. Cameron Smyth
8. Simi Valley Teachers (SEA)
9. Peter Foy
10. Keith Richman
11. Police Chief Mike Lewis
Bob Huber has started out strong and has a head start on officially campaigning. That being said Steve Sojka has many attributes that he can use in a campaign. Because of his direct mail business I expect he will be able to maximize his campaign spending. He is involved in many local charities including The Police Foundation which could help him with the POA. Public safety is the perennially most important issue in Simi Valley city elections and in addition to his support of The Police Foundation he has a long family history with the SVPD.
This race could be very exciting. As a blogger and a voter I look forward to a contested race for mayor. Contested elections are good for democracies and this contest could make the successful candidate a better mayor. I will be covering the campaigns more often than any other source.
To the candidates and their supporters: If you ever see a comment that goes over the top and should be removed please send me an email. I do not post that you requested a comment removed. You don't need to register to comment. Keep it classy everyone.
Click on continue reading for another photograph of Bob Huber.
Democrat Shawn Stern is planning a whole different type of campaign that he says will demonstrate what type of Member of Congress he would be. He isn't raising money. You read that correctly. He isn't making phone calls and his website doesn't even have a donate now button. He won't take your money even if you offered it to him.
Instead he is trying to show that he would be much more accessible than Rep. Gallegly has been. He has put up a new website where people can ask him questions that he will address in an upcoming online press conference. I submitted a question asking if he would vote to remove Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) and I asked him if he held Lincoln or Washington in higher regard. Go ask him your own question @ :
This week he is planning a press conference outside of Rep. Elton Gallegly's office where he is going to explain this claim:
"Mr. Gallegly has held no town hall meetings, no press conferences, and is unavailable to the people in our community. It's the job of a Congressman to listen to his community, and then stand for us in Washington. We have not seen that from him."
Click on continue reading for his press release.
Running a campaign without money on the surface seems like a bad plan. But we will see what type of media coverage, how many letters to the editor, and what level of buzz among activists that you can generate without significant financial contributions. I think the plan is flawed but the next few weeks will be a test of your strategy.
Many state legislators were recently caught not reporting gifts from special interest groups. The fines were rather small but I am always amazed legislators don't reject more gifts to avoid the appearance of impropriety or to deprive their opponents of easy attacks.
Click here for the article. Here are some of the local connections:
• Assemblyman Pedro Nava, D-Santa Barbara, $154 for a reception and travel costs from the Bank of America Corp., and $94 for a dinner from the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians.
• Sen. George Runner, R-Lancaster, tickets of $60 for concerts of Keith Urban and George Strait, respectively, by the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians.
Assemblywoman Audra Strickland, R-Moorpark, $83 in Billy Joel concert tickets from the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians.
I didn't know Billy Joel has kept touring. His We didn't start the fire song is really popular with history teachers but I am disappointed with the end of it. He finishes a great song with "cola wars I can't take it anymore" and overturns a table. After a song that covers some heavy issues the event that pushes him over the edge is the cola wars?
Who do you think came out ahead in this story? It surely wasn't the public who is weary of this type of influence peddling. Sure they might vote for you but frequently it isn't because they trust you much it is just that they trust the other party even less.
Note to elected officials: The average voter doesn't think it is okay for you to take concert tickets and other gifts that are obviously being given to influence you from special interest groups. The small gifts aren't worth the trust you are losing. We pay you fairly high salaries. Please pay for your own meals and tickets.
Campaign donations are supposedly to help elect people that a group agrees with on policy. But gifts aren't given to help elect a candidate usually. This report is just the gifts that candidates didn't report for a variety of reasons including clerical mistakes and misunderstanding the law.
Imagine all the perfectly legal and reported gifts being given to people that are supposed to be looking out for our best interests.
UPDATE: I know our local legislators are going to keep taking tickets from groups trying to influence them but I have thought of a compromise. There should be a local raffle where the voters have a chance at winning concert tickets given to our legislators. Who's with me?
Moorpark Professor Marie Panec sent out a press release showing she is officially running and included the themes of her campaign. I have heard she has built up an organization of dedicated students to help her win the primary campaign.
She stands out from her opponents in the primary because she is already an elected official. She is currently a School Board Member in the highly regard Oak Park School District.
Click on continue reading for her press release.
I spoke with candidate Shawn Stern tonight and he is planning a big week ahead. I will post more on his campaign tomorrow.
The field for candidates seems to be set so I removed some of the choices from the poll. Previous polls included Ventura County Supervisor Steve Bennett, Moorpark Council Member Keith Millhouse ( if he switched parties), and California Superintendendt of Education Jack O'Connell.
Although the races for Sheriff , the Democratic nomination in the 35th State Assembly District and for Supervisor from Thousand Oaks will likely generate the most excitement I plan to cover the congressional primary often and with great detail. I don't know which of the three candidates I am going to vote for yet and that makes it interesting to me too.
1. Rep. Elton Gallegly doesn't hold a town hall meeting in Ventura County that is scheduled and open to the public.
2. Audra Strickland runs for another office.
Audra Strickland draws out the passion from activists on both the left and the right. I know that Republican activists will support her but I don't know if Democratic activists will get strongly behind Republican Linda Parks. In making this move Audra Strickland has given up any claim to not being a "career politician". She should start embracing the title and use it to explain the calling to public service she feels to young people.
Audra Strickland is great at campaigning. She has so far done very well in teasing out her entrance into the race over the last few weeks to maximize media coverage. Both her and Tony Strickland are energetic campaigners that are willing to work very hard to earn the support of voters. This will be the toughest campaign ever for Linda Parks.
I have often been critical of Audra Strickland but she has been very willing to meet with the public. This has served her well so far and I expect she will continue with this tradition. I look forward to many debates between the candidates.
Assembly Member Audra Strickland,
Thanks for helping to sell newspapers and drive traffic to blogs. I look forward to an exciting campaign. I consider this move your blog stimulus plan.
Can you please use the term State Assembly Member and not Assembly Man or Assembly Woman? I believe Your AP Style Guide will back me up.
( Here is Tim Allison saying discussing his support for Barack Obama.)
The 24th Congressional District Primary is now between Tim Allison, Marie Panec, and Shawn Stern. Tim Allison has by far been campaigning the hardest of the three by adding staff members, attending events, and announcing endorsements. Marie Panec is running quietly for the time being but with the June primary election fast approaching she has lost ground to Tim Allison. Shawn Stern has a large Facebook presence and a great website but I don't see how he is going to attract attention from primary voters if something doesn't change.
If Shawn Stern or Marie Panec wins the primary can we expect them to run with the needed intensity for general election campaign?
Click on continue reading for the latest press release announcing more endorsements for Tim Allison.
You can go to their websites to see their endorsements for yourself:
Most endorsements don't change who I would like to see win an election but I do admire Dolores Huerta. I haven't decided who I want to win the Democratic nomination and I don't expect an endorsement to be influential either. My top issues for the state assembly are jobs, the budget, and education reform.