Less than six months before the June election and there’s no major Democratic challenger to San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s re-election bid.
That’s still the case even now that former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña is jumping into the race.
Saldaña was a Democrat for years but left the party in September 2014 after a series of disputes with local leaders and a growing antipathy for party politics. Saldaña served in the state Legislature from 2004 to 2010 and lost a bitter primary battle for Congress against current Rep. Scott Peters in 2012.
She also made waves in 2013 when she revealed that she warned Democratic Party officials about ex-Mayor Bob Filner’s behavior with women during the 2012 mayoral campaign. She didn’t speak out publicly until after the allegations against Filner came out.
Saldaña plans to make formal announcement of her campaign on Thursday, but she talked to me in advance. She said she’s under no illusions about the challenges she faces going up against Faulconer. The mayor not only is popular but also has more than $1 million in his campaign accounts when you include PAC money.
“Looks pretty hopeless,” Saldaña joked.
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I met Lori Saldana early in her first term in the Assembly, and was struck by what a sincerely nice person she was. She was a hard working People’s representative in Sacramento. She also spoke out on the Filmer fiasco early on, having enough gumption to admit she had relayed her concerns to Democratic party officials (to no avail).
I’m a supporter of Faulconer, and think he’ll be reelected, but competition from a sincere person like Saldana can’t hurt anyone (except perhaps Lori’s pocketbook). I particularly like her comments on the Chargers’ situation and the NFL in general.
The candidate seems to endorse making the streets smooth enough to operate a cell phone while riding a bicycle. Perhaps she should rethink that proposal.
@Bit-watcher Well, this is only the beginning of more coverage to come. If you are truly waiting for her views on the issues not detailed here or her in-depth plans to address current city shortcomings, then we should keep our fingers crossed that Faulconer accepts her invitation to a public debate. Surely, such an open-minded voter who avoids party politics like yourself would not have already made up his mind to call her self-important and lacking sense this early on in the campaign.
I'm very happy to see this, Faulconer needs to be challenged. I was thinking of running myself just to give him some kind of challenge but I can't afford to take the salary cut. Cheers to Lori Saldana. Everyone who had hopes for the kind of government Filner was trying to bring should support Lori, same great ideas without the baggage. And, get set everyone, for the attacks she will endure and help out.
Falconer's promotion of public dollars for a convention center expansion and a Charger's stadium over the needs of infrastructure fixes should make him vulnerable. However, Saldana needs financial backing. Hopefully, Mickey Kasparian (labor) will support her. Remember, it was Kasparian who encouraged Alvarez to run (a disastrous choice) instead of Todd Gloria. We have Mayor Sunny, rather than Mayor Todd, because of that choice.
Finally someone with the ovaries big enough to take on Faulconer, the Chamber of Commerce and the Lincoln Club!