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VOSD Podcast: Who Really ‘Got Rid of’ Filner

bob filner san diego
Former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner / Photo by Jamie Scott Lytle

John Cox, a Rancho Santa Fe businessman who’s running for governor, made quite a claim [1] in a gubernatorial debate this week.

In response to a question about sexual harassment and the #MeToo movement, he said: “I led the recall of Bob Filner and got rid of him as the San Diego mayor.”

A collective eyebrow raise spread across San Diego.

On this week’s show, hosts Sara Libby, Scott Lewis and Andrew Keatts consider the claim, and go through the laundry list of people and efforts that really put the pressure on Filner to resign.

The recall effort, to which Cox contributed $10,000 , was one of several things that put pressure on Filner to step down, but it wasn’t the main impetus.

Recalling elected officials in San Diego was nearly impossible at the time. The recall bar was so high [2], in fact, that the City Charter was later changed [3] to dramatically expand the ways in which a wayward elected official could be removed.

Other factors, like the women who came forward to talk about the sexual harassment they experienced and the flood of tenacious media coverage, were much more effective in forcing Filner out of office.

Also on the show, the hosts break down Voice of San Diego’s investigation into the systemic issues that help public school employees accused of sexual harassment duck accountability [4] and stay in San Diego schools.

And ICYMI: The Bonnie Dumanis interview is out [5]. The former district attorney answered all the questions Lewis, Libby and Keatts have long wanted to ask, including what she knew about the Mexican man convicted of illegally funneling money to local politicians, police shootings, race relations, why she decided to run for county supervisor and more.

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