Politics Blog

The Business of Dirty Nukes

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By Sarah Phelan
In the war on terror, even cats are suspect. Or at least their kitty litter is.
That’s because of trace amounts of uranium and other suspect stuff that apparently triggers alarms at ports worldwide
But now comes news of better technology--and bigger profits—in the war on terror. Read more »

Money has stopped talking

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by Amanda Witherell

Here's another, less lauded "San Francisco value." Page A18 of the November 14 New York Times (sorry, folks...they don't seem to have it online...) had a tally of the most expensive House races in millions spent. It shows that those who spent the most, lost the most. Just like here in San Francisco!

Republicans outspent Democrats in nearly all the seats the chart lists, and the races they won, they only spent marginally more than their foes. Read more »

Now the police are all on foot patrols, pass the pot, huh?

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By Sarah Phelan

Moments after the Board of Supes overode the mayor's veto of their foot patrol legislation, Sup. Tom Ammiano got an 8-3 vote to make marijuana offenses the lowest law enforcement priority. Phwew! Because there we were worrying about all those police walking beats and busting hippies for rolling up big fat ones in the park. Close one.

Board overrides Mayor's foot patrol veto

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By Sarah Phelan
It hasn’t exactly been a good couple of weeks for Mayor Gavin Newsom.
His picks for Board of Supervisors got thumped.
The 49ers said they’re running away with Santa Clara but keeping San Francisco’s name.
Newsom nix sayed the city’s Olympic bid
And then the Board of Supervisors overrode Newsom’s veto of police foot patrol legislation in a 9-2 vote that means the city will go ahead with a one-year citywide pilot project.
Worse, the nine sups that defied his veto got to explain their reasons, which included slamming the mayor and the police chief for lack of leadership..
Sup. Read more »

Oh, the fists!

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by Amanda Witherell

Mayor Newsom is getting pummeled left and right. (Actually, they're probably all lefts.) Only one of his three acolytes won the election last Tuesday. The 49ers are waving good-bye after they promised they weren't talking with any other cities. The Olympic bid went south with them. Supe. Aaron Peskin switched sides and Supe. Read more »

What's with the pot bill?

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By Tim Redmond

Sup. Tom Ammiano has a real simple measure coming to the board that ought to pass unanimously. It's worked fine in Berkeley for many, many years. It works fine in Seattle, Santa Cruz, and Santa Barbara. And yet, it faces what could be a tight board vote and a mayoral veto. Crazy.

What Ammiano wants to do is make enforcing the marijuana laws the city's lowest police priority. We're just talking about possession laws, not sales. The city's narcotics cops say it won't be a problem. Read more »

Newsom fights veto override

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By Sarah Phelan

With the Board of Supervisors set to vote Tuesday on the mayor veto of Sup. Ross Mirkarimi's foot-patrol legislation, the mayor 's office has reportedly gone into overdrive to try to ensure his veto will hold .

The math is tough for Mayor Gavin Newsom: Supes Mirkarimi, Chris Daly, Tom Ammiano and Gerardo Sandoval are solidly behind the legislation. That’s four votes. Read more »

Uncommon Knowledge at the Roxie, Thursday

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What’s up with UC Berkeley Extension in SF?
By sarah Phelan

It’s not common knowledge that the UC Regents are proposing to close UC Berkeley Extension’s historic San Francisco campus and convert it into condos and a retail shopping center.

Thankfully, along comes Eliza Hemenway and her documentary, Uncommon Knowledge: Closing the Books at UC Berkeley Extension, just in time to get you up to speed before public comment closes in December.

So, get yourself down to the The Roxie Film Center for a special preview screening Thursday, Nov. Read more »

Ed Jew Takes District 4, Daly in 6

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by Amanda Witherell

The city's Elections department just released the ranked choice results for district 4 and Ed Jew is the unofficial winner with 52 percent of the vote. Ron Dudum was the last to drop, but the results show enough of the voters selected Jew as their preferred second choice.

The ranked choice votes also showed Chris Daly still has a firm grip on his seat in District 6. Read more »

Ranked choice spreads

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By Laura Beth McCaul
While the Democrats’ congressional takeover and Donald Rumsfeld's resignation are making headlines, election day set off another trend that may not be on the tip of voters' tongues, but could change the way democracy works in the United States.
Instant runoff voting (IRV), or ranked choice voting – which has been in place in San Francisco for two years -- was on the ballot in four jurisdictions and all won with significant approval. Read more »