By Steven T. Jones
There's a fascinating mix of videos about Sup. Chris Daly on You Tube these days. You can hear Chris speak or people speak about him, or you can watch political ads with stark contrasts between the Daly lovers and haters. The ads for him are funny and whimsical, the ones hitting him are dark, scary, misleading, and in one case, racist. They say Daly "never passed a single law to combat crime," even though he chaired the committees that passed two budgets filled with crime-fighting measures, as well as placing the crime-fighting Proposition A on the June ballot, which narrowly failed because it was opposed by Mayor Gavin Newsom, opponent Rob Black, and the pro-Black Police Officers Association (which was loathe to spend $10 million on violence prevention programs instead of just more cops and overtime, which is the Newsom/Black strategy). But the funniest accusation is how Daly is now in the pocket of downtown interests, with one video showing Daly morphing into former Mayor Willie Brown, who Daly has a storied history of fighting on behalf of the anti-downtown forces. Yes, it's true that Daly has gotten some developer money in this election, but that's only because he's made himself the go-to person for facilitating projects by developers who are willing to provide the maximum community benefits and affordable housing payments -- which is what progressives demand of developers. Even downtown interests like SPUR have said this is true (the whole story is here). The bottom line: Black and his downtown buddies (from mentor Jim Sutton to SFSOS to BOMA) know D6 voters want someone to stand up to downtown, so they're throwing a bunch of smoke and misinformation up in the air to confuse the issue. Don't be fooled...but enjoy the show.