Endorsements 2012: San Francisco races - Page 2

Rizzo and Selby for D5 supervisor. Our top choice in D1 is Eric Mar


Lee refused to come into the Guardian for an endorsement interview, or even to respond to our repeated calls with questions about his background and the false charges he's been leveling at Mar.

They include the accusation that Mar is being backed by well-funded "special interests" because he has the support of labor.

With David Campos and John Avalos unopposed, and District 5 a fractious mess, much progressive energy is focused on Mar's re-election. If Lee wins, it will be a huge setback to the progressive movement. We're nervous about Mar, given his recent votes—but we'll endorse him for another term.



We haven't always been happy with David Chiu. After being elected as a progressive — and getting elevated his first week in office to board president — he started slipping into the moderate, sometimes squishy center. He supported the Twitter tax break (approving it before the company even presented a community benefits plan). He helped put Ed Lee in the Mayor's Office, and was the swing vote approving the Parkmerced overhaul that drew strong opposition from tenant groups. He's tried to water down efforts by Sup. David Campos to close loopholes in the city's health-care law. He allowed the mayor to escape the real debate that was part of the voter-approved "question time."

In his second term as president, he appointed some of the more conservative supervisors as committee chairs. In our endorsement interview, Chiu said he doesn't believe those appointments have effected legislation — but Sups. Mark Farrell and Elsbernd have been actively sabotaging progressive appointments and initiatives on the Rules Committee, and Chu chairs the powerful Budget and finance Committee.

But on some issues, he's been not only a good vote but a leader. He played a key role in trying to stop the 8 Washington project. He's raised concerns about other waterfront development. He's also in the forefront of the fight to make sure that neighborhoods get their fair share in the CPMC deal and that St. Luke's remains a viable health-care option in the southeast part of the city.

Chiu has passed good environmental legislation, including streamlining the process to start urban agriculture projects and saving paper by limiting distribution of telephone books. He fought for the language access ordinance and the rights of immigrant parents in school board elections.

We wish Chiu weren't so quick to compromise, particularly with the mayor. But none of his competition, including opera singer and perennial candidate Wilma Pang, have presented a stronger alternative. Chiu's not perfect, but we support him for District 3 supervisor.






We hold this truth to be self-evident: District 5 is the heart of progressive San Francisco, the most left-leaning district in the city. The supervisor who represents the Haight, Western Addition, and Inner Sunset has to be a reliable part of the progressive community, someone who can be counted on to vote the right way pretty much 100 percent of the time.

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