Dan's Ballot Recommendations November 2018

Governor – Gavin Newsom – Obviously, vote for the Democratic nominee. He’s been Mayor of a large city and our state’s Lt. Governor. He wants to enact policy solutions and budget choices that help solve are most challenging problems.  -  WON


Lt. Governor – Eleni Kounalakis – Not particularly enthusiastic by either of the two Democrats in this race, but I believe Ms. Kounalakis is the better bet to make productive use of this office.  -  WON


Secretary of State – Alex Padilla – He’s done a very good job as our Secretary of State. Strong advocate for increased voter participation, and not afraid to push back against the Trump Administration.  -  WON


State Controller – Betty Yee – Betty is super-smart and has done an excellent job as our State Controller. She knows what she is doing and serves this office well. Betty wholeheartedly deserves re-election.  More info at https://bettyyee.com  -  WON


State Treasurer – Fiona Ma – Fiona is a CPA, current member of the Board of Equalization, and former State Assemblymember. She will do a good job as our Treasurer.  -  WON


Attorney General – Xavier Becerra – Former Member of Congress appointed to this office by Governor Brown. Mr. Becerra is a smart guy who will use this office to fight back against the regressive policies of the Trump Administration.  More info at https://xavierbecerra.com  -  WON


Insurance Commissioner – Ricardo Lara – State Senator Lara has been a strong, progressive legislator and passionate consumer advocate. His opponent is a conservative Republican who is pretending to be an Independent.  More info at http://www.ricardolara.com  -  WON

U.S. Senator – Kevin de Leon – State Senator de Leon has been a strong, progressive leader on many issues including the need to move our clean energy economy forward. I don’t dislike Dianne Feinstein, but I think now is the time to bring new energy into the U.S. Senate to represent our state.  -  LOST  ---  Congrats to DIANNE FEINSTEIN

State Board of Equalization (District #2) – Malia Cohen  -  WON

State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) – Tony Thurmond – The clear choice is Tony Thurmond for this critical education position. His opponent is supported by zealous advocates for and owners of Charter schools. Tony has the values, experience with youth and education issues, and the on-point plan to be an effective SPI for the children in our state. PACs opposing Tony are spewing out ridiculous lies. This is a key race. Tony is clearly the best candidate.  More info--including Tony's endorsements--can be found at https://www.tonythurmond.com  --  WON!

CA State Assemblymember:

AD 15 – Jovanka Beckles – I am joining with Barbara Lee, Keith Carson, Judy Appel, Jesse Arreguin, Sheila Jordan, Rebecca Kaplan, Calif. League of Conservation Voters, Calif. Environmental Justice Alliance, Sierra Club, East Bay Young Democrats, MGO Democratic Club, Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club, Equality California, California Labor Federation AFL-CIO, National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW), and many more unions, political organizations and community leaders in support of Jovanka Beckles for State Assembly.

   I believe that Jovanka will become a determined leader in the State Assembly on a range of important issues including renter protections, criminal justice reform, mental health funding and services, environmental justice, consumer protections, clean money elections and more. Over the decades, Jovanka has demonstrated a proven commitment to the East Bay and to the East Bay’s progressive values. She will represent us well. - LOST  -- -- --  CONGRATS to BUFFY WICKS


  #10 – Marc Levine         #16 – Rebecca Bauer-Kahan - WON!

  #18 – Rob Bonta          #19 – Phil Ting         #22 – Kevin Mullin  

  #37 – Monique Limón         #38 – Christy Smith - WON        #43 – Laura Friedman  

  #72 – Josh Lowenthal - Lost                 (vote only for Democrats in all State Assembly seats

CA State Senator:

         #2 – Mike McGuire                          #6 – Dr. Richard Pan  

         #8 – Paulina Miranda - LOST                   #10 – Bob Wieckowski  

        #12 – Anna Caballero - WON                  #14 – Melissa Hurtado - WON 

        #22 – Mike Eng - LOST                           #26 – Ben Allen  

        #30 – Holly Mitchell                          #34 – Tom Umberg  - WON

                  (vote only for a Democrat in your even-numbered seat up this year)

U.S. Congressional Representative (in California):

     #2 – Jared Huffman                         #9 – Jerry McNerney                   #11 – Mark DaSaulnier

    #12 – Nancy Pelosi (next Speaker!)     #13 – Barbara Lee                       #14 – Jackie Speier

    #15 – Eric Swalwell                           #30 – Brad Sherman                    #37 – Karen Bass

    #4 – Jessica Morse Lost                  #10 – Josh Harder  WON           

    #21 – T.J. Cox  WON                         #22 – Andrew Janz Lost

    #25 – Katie Hill  WON                         #39 – Gil Cisneros  WON          

    #45 – Katie Porter WON                   #48 – Harley Rouda  WON                                             

    #49 – Mike Levin  WON                    #50 – Ammar Campa-Najjar Lost

 [***No matter in which district you live, vote for the Democratic nominee, and help make phone calls around the state to push back against Trump and take back the House of Representatives!  Please help the highlighted Democratic challengers above who are working to defeat pro-Trump Republican incumbents. Contact https://www.flipthe14.com/get_involved.]  
THANK YOU to all who volunteered on these Congressional races.

CA Supreme Court, Associate Justice Leondra Kruger YES - WON


Oakland Mayor – Libby Schaaf – Oakland is a challenging city to run. Libby is a decisive mayor and has done a good job to move the ball forward on a number of issues facing our city. I’ve found her to be a thoughtful and helpful ally and leader on a range of renter protection, public safety, infrastructure, environmental and transportation issues and much more. Of course, there’s more to do. I know she has the best interests of the city at heart and that she will continue to work hard at making Oakland an even better city for all its residents. I look forward to continuing working with her.  -  WON

Oakland City Council:

D-2 – Abel Guillén – Abel has done a very good job serving his constituents and working to address the challenging city-wide issues facing us today. He has shown himself to have a strong financial background, a firm understanding of complex issues, and a passion for solving local neighborhood problems. He supports additional affordable housing, protections for renters, increases in the funds allocated to homeless services, a clean and healthy environment, and greater attention to our city’s infrastructure needs. He’s a hard-working colleague and has earned re-election to the Council.  -  LOST  (congrats to Nikki Fortunato Bas)

D-4 – Nayeli Maxson (rank 1)  \  Pam Harris (rank 2) – A number of good candidates are running for this district 4 seat being vacated by Annie Campbell Washington. Nayeli Maxson has the City Hall, nonprofit, neighborhood and community-based experience to be an effective Councilmember from day one. She has solid support in every neighborhood in the district. Pam Harris is a very strong second choice in this competitive race.  -  LOST  ---  Congrats to Sheng Thao

D-6 – Natasha Middleton (rank 1) \ Loren Taylor (rank 2) – The district 6 incumbent has been on the Council for 16 years and has developed a disappointing, and sadly deserved, reputation as being unnecessarily and inexplicably abrasive, and insulting and abusive to many people in and around City Hall. To say this is counter-productive for an elected official is putting it mildly. And she’s not even a reliable progressive vote. Fortunately, there is more than one D-6 challenger who is smart, qualified, passionate about the issues, and would do an excellent job as the new D-6 Councilmember. Natasha Middleton is an experienced, dedicated and progressive policy expert and community/neighborhood advocate. Loren Taylor is a solid second choice for this seat.  L / W  ---  Congrats to Loren Taylor

Oakland City Auditor – no recommendation - Please note that, while I have not made a formal

         endorsement in this race, I believe the incumbent has done a good job as our City Auditor.  Congrats to Courtney Ruby on her return election to the office of City Auditor.  Thank you very much to outgoing Auditor Brenda Roberts for her good work over the past four years.  

Alameda County Assessor – Phong La  -  WON

Berkeley City Council:

        D-1 – Igor Tregub – Strong environmental candidate; smart, works hard, passionate about

                   supporting effective solutions. Currently an elected Rent Board commissioner.  -  LOST

        D-4 – Kate Harrison – Progressive incumbent who deserves re-election.  -  WON

     [no recommendations in D-7 and D-8]

Berkeley City Auditor – Jenny Wong - WON

Berkeley Rent Board:

                        Maria Poblet; John Selawsky; James Chang; Paola Laverde - all Won

Alameda Mayor – Marilyn E. Ashcroft  -  WON

Alameda City Council – John Knox White (WON); Jim Oddie - ??

Albany City Council – Rochelle Nason; Peggy McQuaid - Won/Won

Emeryville City Council – Dianne Martinez; Scott Donahue - Won/Won 

Hayward Mayor – Barbara Halliday - WON

Piedmont City Council – Tim Rood (vote for up to 3 candidates – make sure Tim is one of them) - WON

San Leandro Mayor – Pauline R. Cutter - WON

San Leandro City Council - Corina Lopez (5); Lee Thomas (3); Deborah Cox (1) - Won/Lost/Won

Peralta Community Colleges Trustee (#5) – Cindi Reiss – Smart person with ideal background, experience and commitment to be a strong and effective trustee. I'm very enthusiastic about her candidacy. Please support her.  -  WON!

BART Director

      Robert Raburn (#4) – Excellent environmentally-oriented incumbent - WON 

      Anu Natarajan (#6) – Former Fremont Councilmember with an environmental and smart growth background  -  Lost

      Melanie Nutter (#8) – Long-time environmentalist with substantial relevant govt. experience. She’ll be an excellent BART Board member  -  Lost

East Bay MUD –

         Marguerite Young (#3) - WON

Eden (Township) Healthcare District board - Stephen Cassidy - Lost

Selected endorsements in Contra Costa County:  

Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools – Lynn Mackey - WON

Contra Costa Board of Education (area #2) – Sarah Butler - WON

Hercules City Council – Chris Kelley - Won

Orinda City Council – Amy Worth - Won

Richmond City Council – Eduardo Martinez (WON); Ana Recinos (Lost); Jim Rogers (Lost)

San Pablo City Council – Rita Xavier - WON

Stege Sanitary District – Juliet Christian-Smith – Climate scientist and water policy expert! - WON

West County Wastewater District – Cheryl Sudduth  -  WON

E.B. Regional Parks Director (#7) – Colin Coffey  -  WON

San Francisco Board of Supervisors:

      #2 – Nick Josefowitz – Experienced Clean Energy leader, effective transportation advocate who is true believer in common sense customer service - Lost

      #4 – Gordon Mar – Strong Progressive background with long history of working in the community as an effective leader. - WON

      #6 – Matt Haney – Progressive School Board member, attorney and experienced community leader. WON

      #8 – Rafael Mandelman – Recently elected incumbent; smart guy who is doing and will continue to do a very good job as a progressive and responsive County Supervisor. WON

     #10 – no recommendation

San Francisco Public Defender – Jeff Adachi – This incumbent Public Defender has been a passionate leader on criminal justice reform. He is doing a fine job in his current position and certainly deserves re-election.  -  WON

San Francisco Community College District Bd. of Trustees – John Rizzo - WON

San Mateo Community College District Bd. of Trustees – Richard Holober (area #4) - WON

Santa Clara County Supervisor – Susan Ellenberg (#4) - WON

San Diego Board of Supervisors – Nathan Fletcher (#4) - WON

Local Ballot Measures

 Oakland Ballot Measures

   Measure V – YES – Cannabis – Makes technical changes to Oakland’s cannabis business laws to allow for quarterly payments of taxes and deductions for raw materials for cultivation like other manufacturers already have. Also allows City Council to adjust down the business tax to keep the industry competitive in Oakland. Authored by Councilmember Kalb! - WON!

    W – YES – Vacant Property Taxes – Institutes a tax on vacant properties to fund programs and services for the homeless, to provide funding to reduce and deter illegal dumping and blight, and to help preserve and create affordable housing. Establishes a city commission on homelessness. - WON!

    X – YES – Progressive Real Estate Transfer Tax – Creates a tiered transfer tax on the sale of properties. Lowers the one-time tax for sales of properties under $300,000. Increases the one-time tax on properties sold for over $2 million dollars. No change in the tax on properties that sell for more than $300,000 and less than $2 million. Also reduces the tax on low and moderate income first-time homebuyers, and allows for using a portion of the tax to fund seismic retrofit work or solar energy installation on newly purchased homes. This measure will raise several millions dollars per year for vital city services. Luxury homebuyers, big-time developers, and out-of-town investors generally will be the ones paying this luxury tax. 
Authored by Councilmember Kalb. -  WON!

  [***Urgent: Please make a donation to help us pay off our mail & outreach budget for the YES on X campaign effort. Please send a check today to: Oaklanders for Fair Taxation & Improved City Services, Yes on X; 1814 Franklin St., #510, Oakland, CA 94612. Thank you!]

    Y – YES – Just Cause Renter Protections – Removes the Just Cause exemption for owner-occupied duplexes and triplexes thereby ensuring that tenants in these smaller buildings have the same eviction protections as tenants in other buildings including other duplexes and triplexes. Allows Council to create new limits on eviction, but does not allow Council to modify or take away any other existing exemptions. Authored by Councilmembers Kalb and Gallo. - WON

    Z – YES – Hotel Workers Protections – Citizen Initiative to create a specified minimum wage for hotel workers in Oakland and to create certain workload standards. Provides emergency panic buttons to hotel workers. Allows city to enforce hotel worker standards and creates a Department of Workplace and Employment Standards in Oakland. Hotel worker provisions only apply to hotels of 50 rooms or more. - WON

   AA – YES – Children’s Initiative – Citizen initiative parcel tax to fund early childhood and pre-school education in Oakland. Also funds the Oakland Promise to increase high school graduation rates and improve college readiness. Broad-based coalition in favor of this measure.   (pending)

 East Bay Regional Parks District Measure FF – YES – This is a vitally important environmental protection and wildfire safety measure to extend the modest, already-existing $12/year parcel tax for our East Bay regional parks. This will allow for continued funding of wildfire safety management, trail maintenance, parkland improvements, urban creek and natural habitat restoration, and more.  -  WON  http://www.yeseastbayparks.com/why_we_need_measure_ff

 Peralta Community College District Measure EYES – Parcel tax continuation to fund and maintain core academic programs, tutoring, and teacher support. Benefits student populations at Berkeley City College, College of Alameda, Laney College (Oakland) and Merritt College (Oakland).  -  WON

 Peralta Community College District Measure GYES – General Obligation Bond to fund specified upgrade, repair, and construct facility projects to at the four Peralta campuses. Projects will include new STEM labs, student center modernization, library learning resource center, performing arts facilities, child development center, WiFi upgrades, veterans’ centers, and much more.  -  WON

Berkeley Measure O – YES – Affordable Housing Bonds  -  Won

Berkeley Measure R – YES – Climate Resiliency Planning  -  Won

Orinda Measure E – YES – Schools Facilities Bond  -  Won

Alameda Measure K - NO - Deceptive, pro-landlord charter measure  -  (Lost+)

San Jose Measure V – YES – Affordable Housing Bonds - Lost

San Francisco Measure C – YES – Increases Business Taxes for very Large Businesses to Fund Homeless Housing/Services


Los Angeles City Measure B – YES – Allows City of L.A. to consider a Public Bank - Lost

State Propositions

Proposition 1 – Affordable Housing Bond – YES – $4 billion in state general obligations bonds to help fund construction of low-income homes, first-time homebuyers assistance for low and moderate income homebuyers, low-interest loans to veterans for housing assistance, farmworker housing.  https://www.vetsandaffordablehousingact.org/get-the-facts

Prop. 2 – Funding for Housing Solutions for Homeless who have Mental Illness – YES – Provides funds to the counties to implement the state’s No Place Like Home program that will help finance permanent housing for homeless individuals with mental health challenges.  https://www.cayesonprop2.org/get-the-facts

Prop. 3 – Bonds for Water and Related Environmental Projects – Yes – Authorizes several billion dollars for a range of watershed protection, water quality, water supply, fish/wildlife habitat restoration, and groundwater storage projects. Not a perfect measure, but on balance, it is worth supporting. It does not fund the proposed Delta tunnels.

Prop. 4 – Bonds for construction/renovations of Children's Hospitals in CA – YES – Provides specified grant funding to Children’s hospitals—including UCSF Children’s Hospital Oakland—for needed construction, seismic upgrades, renovation and medical equipment.   http://www.yesonproposition4.org/

Prop. 5 – Creates an additional Prop. 13-related Property Tax Exception that will cost schools and cities hundreds of millions of dollars annually – NO – This proposed constitutional amendment was written by the California Association of Realtors. It provides potential financial benefit to those who are already gaining the most from Prop. 13. Yet, this amendment does nothing to help low-income people buy their first home. Meanwhile this will lead to substantial revenue loses for the state, local jurisdictions and our public schools.  http://www.noprop5.com/facts

Prop. 6 – This is a Constitutional Amendment to Repeal the recently-adopted Petroleum Fuel Tax package – NO – Eliminates revenue source that currently funds local road repair, public transit, and other transportation projects. IF this passes, cities will lose a vital and reliable funding stream for public transit as well as important road repair and pedestrian safety projects.  https://noprop6.com/

Prop. 7 – Daylight Savings Time permanence – No – The ultimate goal of this statute is to make daylight savings time permanent in California (pending change is federal law). This would lead to more morning hours being dark throughout our state—including when children are walking/biking or waiting for a bus to go to school. This was tried in 1974 and was so unpopular that the experiment ended early.

Prop. 8 – Cost Containment on Dialysis treatment – Yes – This initiative will bring down the cost of dialysis treatment for California residents—especially those patients who are not eligible for Medi-Cal.

Prop. 10 – Repeals the Costa-Hawkins state law – YES – Gives local jurisdictions more tools to protects renters from displacement. This will primarily impact the 15 cities that already have rent control laws, although all cities and counties can enact some rent control today. Don’t believe the lies from the special interests on the other side. This measure will lead to stronger protection for many renters while not discouraging new residential construction.  https://voteyesonprop10.org/about/

Prop. 11 – Changes meal breaks labor law for private sector ambulance workers – No – Effectively gives private sector ambulance companies a competitive advantage over public sector paramedic/ambulance operators when counties consider who to hire for ambulance service. Retroactively removes these private companies from any financial liability for recent past violations of related labor law.

Prop. 12 – Protects certain Farm Animals from cruel living conditions – YES – Sets humane standards for confinement of egg-laying hens, veal calves, and breeding pigs. Bans sale of non-complying products in California.  https://preventcrueltyca.com/


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***If you’re looking to make a monetary contribution to help elect strong, liberal-progressive Democrats across the country and push back against Trump and his allies, here are some options for making critically helpful donations:

Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee – Helps elect Democratic State Legislators across the country to take back statehouse legislatures and push back against Republican efforts to gerrymander and allow our environment to be destroyed. The DLCC works to rebuild and grow the Democratic Party bench by training and supporting local Democrats to run for state legislative office.

314 Action – Help elect scientists (and STEM candidates) to Congress and other public offices. Please support this worthwhile organization and push back against the right wing’s anti-science agenda.

National Democratic Redistricting Committee – Please support this organization headed up by former Obama-era Attorney General Eric Holder. They are working to end the practice of gerrymandering by GOP legislatures and help create fair districts where Democrats can get elected. They have a strategy to use legal actions, mobilizing grassroots support, push for redistricting reforms, and win targeted state-level elections.

***URGENT! Please consider helping Jacky Rosen, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in Nevada. She's an awesome legislator in a very tight race, and she needs your volunteer help (you can help remotely) now. Click here to volunteer.   ---   WON

Please also consider volunteering remotely for one of these awesome candidates for Governor in close races: 

  Democratic Candidate for Governor of Florida (priority) - Lost

  Democratic Candidate for Governor of Georgia (priority) - Lost

  Democratic Candidate for Governor of Wisconsin (priority)  -  WON!