Mark Lunn is running for County Clerk and Recorder. Among the duties of the office is overseeing elections. That's why it was surprising that his ballot statement was rejected because it violated California Elections Code. His ballot statement was rejected according to the County Elections office because of "prohibited references to other candidates." The prohibited statements implied, but did not directly mention his opponent Jim Dantona when it said:
"As the only candidate who has managed large organizations and thousands of employees, I've proven that I can balance a budget in hard times."
"I am the only candidate with first-hand experience in fighting fraud, forgery and identity left."
To see his entire rejected ballot statement click on continue reading. In fairness two other candidates also had their ballot statements rejected. But neither of the other candidates is trying to get elected to run the local elections office.
He will likely get his revised statement on the sample ballot.
I want a Clerk / Recorder that wants to increase registration and voter turnout. So far Mark Lunn hasn't addressed voter registration or turn out on his campaign website. Mark Lunn has an open invite to be interviewed on my blog. That goes for candidates running for any of the offices this June.
Fact: The three Democrats running in the June Primary have had less letters in the newspaper published combined than either candidate running for Simi Valley Mayor in the November election.
I am done reporting on all three of these candidates until they actually start bringing their message beyond Democratic club meetings. If they can't get a letter to the editor published they not only can't beat Rep. Gallegly but they wouldn't be very effective in congress.
Steve Sojka has officially announced he is running for Mayor. The election isn't until November but already two candidates have announced. I predicted at the start of this year that there would only be two serious candidates running. Barbra Williamson had been rumored to be seriously considering running but after she spoke at Steve Sojka's campaign kick-off clearly that isn't true. I am impressed that Sojka was able to win over Williamson, even after he was critical of her campaign last time and voted to fine her for a campaign finance violation.
I spoke to another person considering becoming a candidate today but they might run for a different position instead.
From time to time I post guest blog entries from my readers. Martin Breen has been the most prolific but I am open to essays from others too. I don't need to agree with your view to post your essay.
Here is Martin's latest:
By Martin Breen
Like many of you, I came to California from another place. In fact, one out of four Californians were born in another State. One more out of the four was born in another country. As such, nearly half of us have settled here by choice or in many cases as fulfillment of a dream. In a sense Californians mirror America's immigrant population as we emigrated to the Golden State for a greater opportunity or as the Mamas and Papas put it by "Californian Dreaming." I came for the weather and stayed for the love of a place where you could ski and surf on the same day. To me, there's no place like it on earth and this little slice of paradise has been my home for the last 35 years.
Click on continue reading for the rest of the essay.
Please leave a comment as feedback to let Martin know what you think.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Ryan Wright will be taking my questions from 7:30 to 9 PM tonight. He is running to be a Judge which limits his ability to answer some questions but I am interested to see what we can learn about his background, experience, and qualifications.
I sometimes ask quirky questions because I know politicians will be asked the standard questions many times on the campaign trail. If I exclude an obvious question it is for that reason.
His opponent dropped out today but their name will appear on the ballot. That means political opportunists should being giving him a call soon to endorse him.
This interview is just between the two of us. I will open it to comments after we finish. If he checks back and answers those questions too that is up to him, but when I asked to interview him I told him it was a one on one interview. I will be interviewing candidates for local office Thursday nights until June.
Jim Dantona has started releasing some of the names of local leaders that have endorsed his run for Ventura County Clerk Recorder. His press release is in bold below my comments.
Here are my thoughts on some of his endorsements:
I have deep respect for State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell. He has consistently pushed for education reforms, even when other educational leaders disagreed with him. I also like his brand of politics. When he was a local legislator he often met with constituents at a card table set up on a street corner. More politicians should follow that example.
Arleigh Kidd is a personal friend of mine and although we disagree on some education policies I know he is a true advocate for the middle class. His endorsement is personal as teachers unions have next to nothing at stake with the county government.
Brad Sherman used to represent large parts of Eastern Ventura County before the last census. He might again after this census. His name might not persuade many voters but it shows Dantona is putting together a credible challenge. In the interest of full disclosure I interned in his office for a few weeks years ago.
I am not surprised supporters of limiting urban growth boundaries wouldn't be supporting Peter Foy's employee as Foy has consistently voted to support the rights of property owners to develop their land. That said it will help Dantona to get support from across the county to avoid being a regional candidate.
We will see how much Firefighters want to spend supporting a candidate for clerk when they have other tough races for supervisor. They do have a great GOTV team which I wonder if it will put to use for a slate of candidates.
Jim Dantona has many contacts across the state and nation from his work in politics but I wonder how they can be used locally. Can he use their endorsements to raise money when the office he seeks doesn't control the types of issues that are important to many interest groups?
He was endorsed by State Senator Alex Padilla who should help him earn more endorsements. He would be smart to work with groups that want to increase Latino electoral participation, especially since his opponent doesn't mention increasing voter registration or participation of any voters on his political website.
It will be an interesting local election season.
JIM DANTONA PICKS UP KEY ENDORSEMENTS
On the same day Jim Dantona officially filed to run for Ventura County Clerk and Recorder, he picked up some major endorsements. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell, Congressman Brad Sherman and State Senator Alex Padilla join a growing list of supporters lining up behind Dantona's campaign.
Joining Dantona at the Ventura County Clerk's office to file were former Mayor of Ventura and author of SOAR, Richard Francis, California Teachers Association Regional Director Arleigh Kidd and Ventura County Firefighter Association President Chris Mahon.
Click on continue reading for the rest of the press release.
The race to be the next Sheriff for Ventura County really is a question of character. The issues that seperate the two candidates are so small that without being an expert we are left with character evaluations. Candidate Geoff Dean was fired and then re-instated over what has been called a ethical issue by the current Sheriff. Dean admits he acted improperly in preparing to campaign but has refuted any insinuation that it should be a major issue.
Dennis Carpenter has argued that this episode is enough to be a major issue in the campaign. Trust is an important issue in law enforcement. If the only information I had was news articles on the subject I wouldn't feel good voting for anyone involved in the department leadership and would prefer a clean sweep of the place. Sometimes news stories leave us with so many unanswered questions we feel less knowledgeable after reading them.
But then I look over the impressive endorsement list over at Geoff Dean's website and it alleviates many of my concerns. If so many of the people that work closely with Geoff Dean trust him enough to put their names on his website then I feel more comfortable with the trust issue.
I wonder if the candidates trust each other enough to keep working for the department no matter who wins? That's an interesting question.
Dennis Carpenter's campaign sent me a fundraising letter to share with my readers:
Sorry for the delay in posting it. Good luck at your fundraiser.
It looks like Peter Foy has drawn a tough challenger. Bruce Thomas is a Moorpark School Board Member and dedicated community volunteer. I think Peter Foy has done an okay job as Supervisor but he could be more dedicated to this job instead of traveling the state for partisan events to protest the president. I will ask Bruce Thomas for an interview in the next few weeks. Until then here is his press release:
BRUCE THOMAS CHALLENGES PETER FOY
US Marine Officer, School Board Member, Financial Adviser To Run
March 12, 2010
Bruce Thomas, the Moorpark School Board Member, family financial adviser, and former U.S. Marine Officer, filed papers to today to challenge incumbent County Supervisor, Peter Foy. Thomas will run in County Supervisor District #4, which includes Moorpark, Simi Valley and Somis.
Thomas said, "I believe East County voters deserve a Supervisor who is committed to working full time to protect our jobs and small businesses, neighborhoods, and vital environmental and agricultural resources".
"As a local elected official, I see the negative impact of partisan gridlock and personal political ambitions on our government's ability to simply do what's right for our communities. I aim to change that by providing hard working, focused leadership you can trust", he continued.
Bruce Thomas has a lifetime of dedicated military, financial and community service. He served 20 years in the U.S. Marines and was the Moorpark American Legion Post Commander for 8 years. Bruce is an elected member of the Moorpark School Board and serves on numerous local community service boards and committees.
Bruce is married to Heidi, a public school teacher. They have three children Justin, a LA police officer; Amy, a physical therapist and Tara, an assistant public school principal.
I doubted he would collect the necessary signatures but it looks like Daniel Goldberg will be running against Mike Stoker ( an employee of State Senator Tony Strickland) for the Republican nomination in the 35th Assembly District. When he gets a few letters published in local papers I will consider him a more serious candidate.
His ballot designation will be farmer. In a time of so much partisanship and distrust in Sacramento I wonder if Goldberg can appeal to the respect many Americans feel towards farmers.
Daniel, many conservatives want Republicans to sign a pledge to never raise any taxes under any circumstances, even as a compromise that cuts spending and other taxes. Will you sign such a pledge?
Here is his press release:
March 13, 2010 (Ventura)- On Friday, Daniel Goldberg officially became a candidate for 35th Assembly District. Goldberg successfully filed nomination papers at the Ventura County Government Center. Running as a Republican he seeks to win the nomination on June 8.
When asked about the race, Goldberg said, "This race is all about the economy. We need to elect someone who can create jobs. I have a jobs plan lined up, while the other candidates are just bickering."
The race will turn out to be the most hotly contested race statewide. Goldberg will face off in the primary against former Santa Barbara County Supervisor, Mike Stoker. On the Democratic side, Susan Jordan and Das Williams are jockeying for the nomination.
Guest blogger Martin Breen is back with another attack on Wall Street. I am open to posting guest blog entries from a variety of views. Just because I post it doesn't mean I agree with their views. In this latest entry Martin Breen has upped his anger at Wall Street.
Are you Now, or Have You Ever Been a Wall Street Banker?
By Martin Breen
If you watch CNBC or read the Wall Street Journal, you would think that criticizing the financial industry or wanting an investigation into potential crimes committed by those involved in the 2008 Financial Crisis is a witch-hunt on par with the 1950's McCarthy Hearings on Communism. Channeling my inner Richie Cunningham (yes, that is a "Happy Days" reference), "that's just cow dung, Fonzie." There's nothing anti-business about expecting the laws of our nation to be equally applied and enforced. Indeed, this is the very political ideology that led to our founding and separation from England.
Click on continue reading for the rest of the entry.
Marie Panec is running for the Democratic nomination for the 24th congressional district. I received yet another press release about her starting to campaign but it doesn't address Gallegly's record nor does it show she is reaching out to independent voters.
Sure she has started campaigning for the nomination of her party but I haven't seen her do much to show how tough of an opponent she would be for Rep. Elton Gallegly. I will start paying attention when she starts proving herself worthy of taking on Gallegly, by actually taking on Gallegly. If her plan is to wait until June to start going after his record that is too late.
There are rumors that a conservative Republican attorney is planning to run against Jeff Gorell because he believes Gorell isn't conservative enough.
I don't know Jeff's positions on many issues but with the early money he has raised and endorsements lined up I expect it won't be a serious challenge. I guess we will find out in a few weeks.
A few weeks back I heard a rumor that someone was planning to run against Peter Foy for Supervisor. I don't have permission to reveal much but I can tell you they are an elected official and a Democrat. With only a few weeks left to get on the ballot I am not sure if they will end up filing.
Do you remember when President Obama criticized the recent Supreme Court ruling that undermined our campaign finance system? Some conservative groups argue it won't really change much while others have said it will open our elections to influence from foreign corporations.
My friend Natalie Panossian is helping to host a discussion of the recent Citizens United Supreme Court Decision. Here is the basic information:
The Federalist Society's Gold Coast Chapter And
California Lutheran University's Political Science Department Present:
"The Citizens United Case and Campaign Finance:
A Victory for Free Speech or Threat to Democracy ?"
When: Monday, March 22, 2010 - 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Where: California Lutheran University - Lundring Events Center
60 West Olson Road, Thousand Oaks, California 91360
Cost: Free to the public.
Click on continue reading for the press release.
If any of my readers go please ask the panelists about the impact of the Ventura County campaign finance ordinance.
Eileen MacEnery is trying to raise the money needed to get on the ballot with Linda Parks and Audra Strickland. Whatever we say about these candidates we should all be proud we have so many strong and dynamic women running for office.
If she gets on the ballot I am not sure what the impact will be except to make it more likely the race goes to the November runoff. I don't know if Eileen's biggest impact would be dividing the anti-strickland vote or the anti-parks vote.
She is not a member of either party which could give an opportunity to exploit the anger at incumbent politicians and try to reach out to disaffected Tea Party people and people that don't want to vote for a Republican candidate.
Here is her declaration of her candidacy:
I want to formally declare my intention to run for Ventura County Supervisor in the 2nd District. I have resided and worked in Ventura County for a majority of the last 34 years. Although I have lived in the City of Ventura and Simi Valley for a few years, most of my residency has been in Thousand Oaks and Newbury Park. Although I have actively supported both Republican and Democratic candidates in the past 30 years, I characterize myself as an "independent" and I am registered as a non-partisan.
I have a platform which is based on the Constitution and common sense, and I believe that, unlike both Linda Parks and Audra Strickland, I understand and represent the majority of the residents of Ventura County and the 2nd District.
For too many decades, the East County has elected professional politicians who promote policies and programs of gentrification and elitism. The strength of America, and Ventura County, has always been its middleclass. It is time that the 2nd District elected someone who knows and understands the struggles of housing, transportation, education and healthcare. As soon as my name is on the ballot, I will begin, in earnest, to explain my views and ideas for a return to the common sense and Constitutional values that our country was built on.
However, the first, and most important, task of my campaign is to get my name and candidate statement on the ballot. Unlike the other declared candidates (both from competing factions of the same political party), I do not have the backing of the wealthy and elite, or a political party machine. Thus, I am appealing to all who are would like to see a true independent elected to County Supervisor, to contact me at EileenMacEnery4Supervisor@gmail.com. Any, contribution, no matter how small will help. I look forward to offering a real choice to the residents of Ventura County.
Click on continue reading to see a past essay she wrote.
Termed Out State Assembly Member Pedro Nava is running in a crowded Democratic field for the nomination of his party. He represents parts of Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties currently. I have seen him speak before and he is truly passionate about the causes he supports. I don't have a favored candidate in the race as of yet.
I feel like I have seen the theme for this ad before but I like it. He quickly tries to introduce himself to viewers by covering his biography and issues. I would like to see more about medical marijuana dispensaries and the state's early inmate release program but with only .44 seconds he does cover a decent amount of ground.
Thanks to Katie Teague for reminding me that the inspiration for Pedro Nava's ad was this Paul Wellstone ad:
Underfunded challengers should take a few minutes and watch the other Wellstone ads on Youtube.
Thomas K. 'Keith' McLaughlin sent out a press release that he is joining the crowded field running for Ventura County Treasurer-Tax Collector. His former title at Countrywide is going to be a deciding issue with many people. I can see it working to show he has the most impressive financial credentials or as a massive liability. Before it was bought out by Bank of America, Countrywide was among the top private sector employers in Simi Valley. But with all of the controversy over the mortgage crisis that good will might be gone.
The difficulty in a crowded field is that any candidate that spends time attacking him is only helping every other candidate in the field. It is early to make any predictions but there are many reasons to think this won't be settled in June. Which candidate has the stamina and the money to campaign throughout the long summer months?
Where do candidates go to raise money for this position? I know there are interest groups for positions like Supervisor ( Unions, Developers, Environmentalists) but what interest groups have a stake in this position?
I am going to keep an open mind on the issue, which is easy to do because I don't have a favorite candidate yet.
Are you open to his message or is his past employer too much during the current economic times?
With Ernest Morell and Warren Harwood passing on running for the Democratic nomination in the 37th State Assembly District it appears Ferial Masry has won by default.
They both have been beat by Audra Strickland before but Strickland is now termed out. The field appears to be set with Ferial Masry running for this seat for the fourth time against Jeff Gorell who ran against Audra Strickland in the 2004 Republican Primary.
Jeff Gorell recently had Ferial Masry speak at his CLU Graduate Level Public Policy class. Hopefully this is a sign that the campaign will stay classy and focused on the future of our state. I will check with both of them about having an online debate. I like the idea of a debate where they just go back and forth asking each other questions. This format wouldn't work for many modern politicians but these two seem to really respect each other.
Click on continue reading for the press release from Ferial Masry's campaign.
The Santa Barbara Democratic Party is pressuring candidates to sign a clean campaign pledge. You can view the pledge by clicking on continue reading. So far in the CA 24 Democratic Primary Tim Allison has signed the pledge but Shawn Stern and Marie Pane have not.
After you read the pledge post a comment with your thoughts if the other candidates should sign it. You don't have to register to comment but keep it classy.
I predict Stern and Panec will pledge to sign it by this Monday.
Linda Parks is putting together a large fundraiser. Click on continue reading for details.
Meanwhile Tony Strickland has announced he is running for State Controller again. What impact on this local race will his rematch play? He won't have as much time to help locally but he will be building an even more impressive statewide network.
Tony Strickland is the leader of the Ventura County Republican Party. He has run statewide before and he is now doing it again. He constantly holds open and scheduled events, something that Rep. Gallegly refuses to do. He has the ability to make this local race very ideological and to call in support from party activists.
Linda Parks better be able to raise money quickly to compensate for taking on her party leaders.
Dennis Carpenter's campaign has been solidifying support among Republican Party leaders and I expect we will see more endorsements rolled out over the next few weeks. With both Tony Strickland and Audra Strickland running for office I don't know how involved they will be getting but I expect they will be helping Dennis Carpenter.
It would be interesting to see if they start going after more endorsements from school board members, park board members, and even water boards. Geoff Dean has a large fundraising advantage as of now but I expect that will narrow. Will there be IE committees that will form to support Dennis Carpenter?
Does this force Geoff Dean to look for more support from Democratic groups? Over the coming months I predict Democratic activists will see where Carpenter is getting support from and start working to elect Geoff Dean.
The informed voter poll The Star reported on doesn't influence my view of the race much without seeing the questions that were asked. Sure, it is more scientific than the online polls on my blog but that isn't saying much. My polls are to gauge the intensity of the supporters of a campaign and for fun. So far this poll shows both candidates have very energized supporters.