Steven T. Jones

Election as prologue

Leno victory and other ballot results shift San Francisco's political landscape
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steve@sfbg.com

San Francisco politics shifted June 3 as successful new coalitions altered the electoral landscape heading into the high-stakes fall contests, when seven of the 11 seats on the Board of Supervisors are up for grabs.
Progressives had a good election night even as lefty shot-caller Sup. Chris Daly suffered a pair of bitter defeats. Read more »

The bicyclist vs. the oil industry's best friend

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As I prepare to attend next week's International Towards Carfree Cities Conference in Portland (from which I'll be doing daily posts on this blog) -- traveling up by train with a big group of bicyclists and alternative transportation activists from San Francisco -- the newsgroups and carfree living websites have been abuzz over this simple image:
biking Obama.jpg
Why go gaga over a presidential candidate on a bike Read more »

Good riddance to SF Zoo director

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sf_zoo.jpg
This weekend came the long overdue news that Manuel Mollinedo has finally resigned as executive director of the San Francisco Zoo. Read more »

SF Weekly and VVM having problems paying up

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Questions were raised in court yesterday about the ability of SF Weekly and their parent company, Village Voice Media, to pay the $15.6 million judgment that the Bay Guardian won in its predatory pricing lawsuit against the chain – or even to secure the bond needed to move forward with appeals.
Weekly attorney Rod Kerr argued the defendant’s motion for a stay of the judgment until 10 days after Judge Marla Miller rules on post-trial motions. Read more »

Leno celebrates tough win

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Lime on Market Street near Castro was crowded with Mark Leno supporters when the candidate took the microphone just before midnight. He had already taken the concession calls from Carole Migden and Joe Nation and was primed to celebrate his victory over an incumbent senator, whom Leno supporter Bevan Dufty had just taken a couple subtle digs at as he introduced Leno, suggesting that Migden didn't listen to her constituents or play by the rules.
Leno then gave a speech that demonstrated the unique package of issues, enemies and allies that he has turned into a winning coalition. Read more »

Yay for A!

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The Great American Music Hall was a bit sedate when I showed up for the Yes on A party. The measure to fund teacher salaries with a parcel tax needed a two-thirds vote and it was a few points shy, but moving up since the conservative absentee ballots were counted. "I wish it weren't this close," school superintendent Carlos Garcia told me, lamenting the high vote threshold. "It's too bad. But I still have faith in San Francisco."
A few minutes later, that faith was rewarded when the new results came in: 69.6% yes with 88.8% of votes counted. Read more »

Migden, the Guardian, and Burton

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After taking heat for weeks after the Guardian failed to endorse Carole Migden, I approach her party with a bit of trepidation, particularly after seeing her trail both Mark Leno and Joe Nation in early returns. She is speaking when I arrive, saying her thank yous. "Thank you, thank you, thank you San Francisco," she closes. Afterward I see one of her most prominent supporters, Senator Darrell Steinberg, the incoming president pro tem, whom I know a little from my Sacramento days.
"She's been a great legislator and whatever happens tonight, she has everything to be proud of. Read more »

Lennar spending records sums on Prop. G

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Tonight's election results will demonstrate how much money matters in local politics, and whether megadeveloper Lennar is able to essentially buy exclusive development rights for southeast San Francisco. That's because the $3.9 million and counting that Lennar has spent to approve Prop. G and kill Prop. F could be the most expensive local measure campaign in California history, according to former Common Cause of SF head Charles Marsteller.
To confirm that, I called Bob Stern at the Center for Governmental Studies -- the guru of California electoral reform -- who had a more qualified answer. Read more »

Election night parties

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Here's a roundup of the main local election night parties:
Yes on A – Great American Music Hall, O’Farrell and Polk streets

Yes on F, No on G – Grace Tabernacle Church, 1121 Oakdale

Yes on G, No on F – Javalencia Café, 3900 3rd Street

Mark Leno – Campaign HQ, 1344 Fourth Street (at "D" Street)
San Rafael, CA 94901 (he might also stop by Lime, 2247 Market Street, where some DCCC candidates – including Laura Spanjian and David Campos – are having a party)

Carole Migden – Campaign HQ, 121 9th St., near Minna

Joe Nation – Wipeout Bar and Grill, 302 BonAir Center, Greenbrae

Fiona Ma for Ass Read more »

It's over -- Obama wins

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The Associated Press is reporting that Barack Obama has secured enough delegates to win the Democratic Party nomination for president, even before today voting in South Dakota and Montana. On to the White House.