There was an interesting moment in last Friday’s mayoral debate on NBC 7 San Diego that I helped moderate.
Lori Saldaña, a former assemblywoman who left the Democratic Party and decided to give the mayor a run, looked Mayor Kevin Faulconer in the eye and told him he’d failed the city on public safety. She let him have it.
I watched, just kind of glad that the mayor was forced to make a case for his re-election. For many months there, it did not look like there would be a race at all. Saldaña, not seeing anyone running, decided to try and then Ed Harris, the longtime leader of the city’s lifeguards union, also threw his hat in.
I was glad because nobody should just stroll into a second term in the most important leadership position in the city without an examination. I liked watching democracy play out. He had to stand there and deal with Saldaña.
She said she knew of a woman, well-qualified for a dispatcher job with the city, who simply would never work for him. The dispatching crisis and slow response times has emerged as Faulconer’s most troublesome problem.
He responded with this: “Perhaps you should talk to the dispatchers themselves and the association that represents them. They didn’t endorse you. They endorsed me because, unlike yourself, I have a real plan,” he said.
Support Independent Journalism Today
I don't think Faulconer should have anything to do w/ East Village nonsense. Why get involved? Who said that there is a critical problem there? The convadium is dead and this we know for sure.
Swing and a miss by the Democrat Party "machine" in San Diego. An over 100k advantage in voters in Democrats vs Republicans--along with over 185k Decline to State voters, and the Democrat Party lays an egg. And yes, it was a crappy turnout, but Faulconer got well over half of the votes from people who bothered to vote. Make a better effort with a better candidate.
This is spot-on. I was particularly flummoxed by "neutralize the complaint from underserved neighborhoods" because this is exactly what happened last year in Normal Heights. We have been waiting for over 10 years for Ward Canyon Park to be completed as planned, approved, and listed on the city's CIP list. We rallied and instead of the $10M for the completed park, instead of the $3M for the half of the park plans that include the community garden and dog park, we got a "generous gift" of $100K to build an "interim dog park" that will likely be there forever. $100K could buy a lot if we could spend it wisely, but in city terms that bought us fencing, some mulch, and a few trash cans. Throw a bone to the folks in mid city and shut them up for awhile.
Toward the end of your piece it was obvious you were disappointed in Faulconer. Maybe you can start a move to get Bob Filner or Dick Murphy back?
I think what's going to happen, sooner rather than later, is an attempt by the political consultants who make their money running campaigns to get Kevin to run for Governor. We'll see then how smart he really is. The guy has never been a rabid Republican partisan. I don't think he'll bite, but you never know.
@Chris Brewster VOSD's name leads all the rest.
Winning 15% of the eligible vote in the City does NOT constitute a "mandate". This wasn't a campaign by Kevin Faulconer, it was a cover-up.
@Martha Sullivan I assume that by a "cover-up" you allude to the suppression of the Biased Policing report (Phase 1) that Falconer and his cohort have suppressed yet again. If you do not know; a hastily contrived new "contract" has be executed on April 6, 2016, to expand the study and to put off public release/disclosure until the coming fall. As a betting man, my wager is that we shall see it after the November elections, if at all. That shall be one year after the original due date.
I expect that SDSU will attempt to impeach the data, since some of it is impeachable; massively so..
Good piece scott and I think right on. I would just quibble with "it is flawed." I think a strong argument can be made that San Diegans have never been comfortable (I think you could go back as far back into the history as Under a Perfect Sun as you would like) with an "activist" mayor of either political persuasion. The Mayor I think correctly reads that.
You nailed it Scott. We have not seen a single new initiative out of the Mayor's office since Faulconer took over. He leads from behind. His slogan should be (appropriately):" Faulconer, Not Making Waves".
His opposition should have roasted him for his initial support of both the convention center expansion and a Charger stadium, but not a bond measure to improve infrastructure.
Given Faulconer's opposition to the increase in the minimum wage, his endorsement by Municipal Employees Unnion is strange. Maybe they just wanted to ride the winning horse.
The MEA endorsed Faulconer long before the extent of the crisis of staffing for 911 dispatch was revealed to the public by the tragic death of an infant 2 months ago. And long before there were any challengers to him. BOTH are culpable in the dysfunction that is increasingly apparent in our City Hall, and they covered for each other.
Per the Registrar of Voters, there are APPROXIMATELY 285,000 Mail / Provisional ballots still to be counted in San Diego County. If just 1/3 of those are in the City of San Diego (which is about 41% of County population) -- that's 95k ballots still to be counted for City races. For Mayor, that's about 1/2 of those counted so far. Please stop feeding the Faulconer Myth.