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November 2013 Endorsements

The SF Green Party has endorsed the following candidates and propositions for November 2013.  See below for longer explanations.

 

This month, we'll organize slate card distribution and Get Out the Vote efforts for the November election. If you can volunteer with either, please come to our meeting on Wednesday the 23rd, 7-9 pm at El CafeTazo (16th St between Valencia and Mission)! If you would like to help but can't make the meeting email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call Barry Hermanson at 255-9494.

 

Supervisor, District 4: write in Mike Murphy (sole endorsement)

Don't forget to connect the arrow next to "write-in" as well.

 

Local Measures:

  • A: NO - potential raid on retiree health trust fund
  • B: NO - wall on the waterfront / more condos for millionaires
  • C: NO - (similar to B) wall on the waterfront / more condos for millionaires
  • D: YES - statement in favor of cheaper prescription drugs

 

Other Local Offices:

Voter Guide (detailed explanations):

 

 

Supervisor, District 4 - Mike Murphy (write in) (campaign website: www.Murphy4supe.org)

Mike moved to San Francisco from Western New York State in 1996.
He lives with his wife and 5 year old son in the Outer Sunset, and
has been registered Green since he arrived in the City.

As citizens we should have a say in decisions that affect our lives.
In a common Machine strategy, SF politicians are promoted before they
term out, the Mayor appoints their successor, who is elected, and
reelected in our one-party town.  The only rule for aspiring
Democratic Party politicians is: "obey the Mayor."  We saw the price
of disobedience: District 5 Supervisorial appointee Christina Olague
was kicked to the curb.

In addition to providing an independent voice for residents of the
Outer Sunset, Mike is also strongly in favor of protecting Golden Gate
Park from commercial development.  The Mayor and his buddies want to
install acres of artificial turf in Golden Gate Park at the Beach
Chalet Fields, and light that industrial park up every night until 10
pm.  The field would be made of toxic astroturf created by chopping up
recycled tires.  It would have a profound negative impact on local
wildlife and the environment.  The field would benefit a private
foundation called City Fields, which would marked the new field to
private soccer leagues.

Rather than supporting the current Supervisor, a rubber stamp for
Downtown developers and Mayor Ed Lee, write in "Mike Murphy" for
District 4 Supervisor.  And don't forget to connect the arrow next
to the write-in slot as well:  the Department of Elections has
already proven that they will not count any votes that they aren't
absolutely, legally required to.
 

NO on A (potential raid on retiree health trust fund)

In June 2008, voters established a retiree health care trust fund to
help pay the health insurance costs of retired City employees.  The
Green Party supported that measure, even as we continued to fight to
replace for-profit insurance with less expensive and better Single
Payer coverage.  Under existing law, money contributed by current City
employees goes into a trust fund, which cannot be spent until 2020,
and only then on insurance costs.  City College employees pay into a
separate trust fund, with identical restrictions.  The current trust
fund governing and distributing board consists of of five members: two
at large (public employees), one Board of Supervisors, and one member
each appointed by the Controller and Mayor.  This gives SF public
employees a semblance of comfort in knowing that their funds are under
safe lock and key, in contrast to the workers of San Mateo Co, who saw
significant losses due to risky investments.

This year, Supervisor Mark Farrell introduced Prop A, which addresses
loopholes in the way funds may be spent starting in 2020, along with
changing structure of the governing board.  These restrictions will
supposedly help protect taxpayers from future raids on the funds.
However, in fact Prop A does the opposite, by allowing the trust funds
to be spent immediately under certain circumstances.  If Prop A
passes, the Mayor and Supervisors could spend money from the City fund
with a supermajority vote, starting as early as next year.  It is
unclear who would control the City College trust fund, but we are
worried that the funds would be controlled by the unelected "special
trustee" who has usurped control of City College from the elected
board.  We are very worried that in either case, the funds would not
be spent for their intended purpose--just as federal pension funds
have been plundered for the purpose of "balancing the federal
deficit."

We urge voters to protect the trust fund by voting NO on Prop A.  If
there really is a problem with the way funds will be managed starting
in 2020, there is still plenty of time to fix this, without
introducing loopholes that may allow the money to be stolen by corrupt
politicians.  Join us by standing against government fiscal
intervention and in solidarity with unions (including SEIU 1021) in
opposing Prop A.

 


NO on B and C (wall on the waterfront / more condos for millionaires)

Prop B is an initiative pushed by well-funded developers that will
overturn existing height limits for a single development along the
west side of the Embarcadero just north of the Ferry Building.  It
will create a wall of 12-story condos, blocking out afternoon sunshine
along the waterfront and producing a "wind tunnel" effect that would
make it unpleasant to walk along the Embarcadero.  Prop B is
particularly bad because it would set a precedent that zoning laws do
not apply to people with enough money to fund an initiative campaign:
like so many laws supported by the City's elite, they would apply only
to the "little people" and not to those in power.

Voting NO on Prop C is another way to reject the same project.  After
the developers bought off the majority of the Board of Supervisors,
Mayor Ed Lee, and former Mayor Gavin Newsom, this giant condo project
sailed through the planning process.  Prop C is a referendum that
would reject the Board of Supervisors' earlier decision to approve
this project.  Because of the way referendums are written, a NO vote
on Prop C is (just like a NO on B) a vote against the project.

A lack of affordable housing is driving poor and middle class people,
artists, and other long-time residents out of the City.  We need a
moratorium on most new market rate condo development, more City
support for cooperative housing models such as community land trusts,
and a procedure for legalization of in-law units without adding
additional parking requirements.  We also need more public parks and
open spaces for people who can't afford huge yards: although the slick
Prop B ads show pictures of beautiful parks, the vast majority of
parks created by their proposal would be like a private country club:
open to the public by invitation only.

Join us in rejecting this abuse of the initiative process by greedy
developers!  Vote NO on both B and C.

 

YES on D (statement in favor of cheaper prescription drugs)

Unfortunately, this measure is only a policy statement.  Regular
people should be able to negotiate better prices for prescription
drugs, a benefit that the Veterans Administration has long enjoyed.
VA drug costs are half the price that the rest of us pay.  If the City
had the ability to negotiate on behalf of the Public Health
Department, there would be a projected savings of $23 million annually
which could be used on other needed services.

 

Treasurer - no endorsement.

 

Jose Cisneros is currently running unopposed for reelection.
As we said in 2009, we appreciate Cisneros'
efforts to lower taxes on SRO residents, and his work with banks to
provide less costly alternatives to check-cashing companies for SF's
poorest residents.  However, we would like Cisneros to be more
proactive in pushing for changes to laws that would benefit City
residents.  For example, state law severely limits the types of
investments that a local Treasurer can make.  City funds must be
invested in commercial banks and government bonds, and may not be
invested in projects such as community land trusts, alternative
energy development, or even home loans to local residents.  Rather
than working to create a publicly-owned Bank of San Francisco that
could invest City funds in such projects, Cisneros has focused on
making deals with private banks.  Cisneros should also call for
reform of Prop 13 to allow higher taxes on commercial property.


Assessor - no endorsement. 

 

Carmen Chu is running unopposed for election to
the office she was appointed to by Mayor Ed Lee, a
politician who himself was originally appointed Mayor by the Board of
Supervisors.  Carmen Chu is no stranger to political appointments, as
she was originally appointed to her seat on the Board of Supervisors
by Mayor Gavin Newsom, who himself obtained a seat on the Board of
Supervisors after being appointed by Mayor Willie Brown.  This maze of
political payback in a 1-party town is confusing, but is best
illustrated in a cartoon by Joe Luby:
http://sfgreenparty.org/11-news/45-is-this-what-democracy-looks-like

As Supervisor, Carmen Chu proved to be a reliable rubber stamp for
Mayors Newsom and Lee, and for the 1% they represent.  Always a
reliable Democratic Party hack, she scored a perfect 0% on our 2012
Supervisorial Report Card, in which we scored votes on important
issues from a Green Party perspective:
http://www.sfgreenparty.org/issues/50-supe-report-card-2012

Carmen Chu did not participate in our endorsement process.

 

 

City Attorney - no endorsement

 

Dennis Herrera is running unopposed for re-election.
We support Herrera's office's efforts in suing the
ACCJC in order to keep City College open and public, and we supported
his lobbying on behalf of marriage equality rights.  However, Herrera
has been reliable corporatist on too many other issues.  In 2007, he
sided with the Lennar Corporation in blocking a citizen-led initiative
regarding Bayview-Hunters Point redevelopment from being placed on the
ballot, even though the residents had gathered a sufficient number of
signatures.  By ruling that the petitions were invalid because the
signature gatherers had not attached copies of a phone book-sized
piece of legislation they were seeking to overturn, Herrera set a
dangerous precedent that will allow authorities to reject any petition
that they believe shouldn't be allowed before voters on similar
technicalities.  Herrera also promised 8 years ago to enforce the
Raker Act (which would bring public power to SF), and he hasn't made
any moves towards doing so.  He's also been unwilling to enforce open
records (Sunshine) laws.

Herrera did not participate in our endorsement process.