Wednesday, March 06, 2019

What's the District 5 campaign about?

Harry Britt and Dean Preston
Photo: James Tensuan, SF Chronicle

You won't find an answer to that question in this story---front page, above the fold!---in the hard copy of the SF Chronicle (Early start to costly, aggressive supe race).

That's not the reporter's fault. She could have talked to her sources all day, and we still wouldn't know. We're back in high school, when electing a homecoming queen or student body president didn't have anything to do with public policy. It was only about who was willing to work hard at getting name recognition and votes from an apathetic student body.

District 5's incumbent supervisor, Valle Brown, worked for both Ross Mirkarimi and London Breed. That tells us that she won't stray far from the City Hall consensus on policy.

Brown's biggest hurdle will be defying this district's history set by The Juanita Owens Effect. Just being appointed supervisor in liberal District 5 by a "moderate" mayor was a political liability for Juanita Owens, appointed by Mayor Brown, and Christina Olague, appointed by Mayor Lee, since both were rejected by District 5 voters as soon as they had the chance.

Dean Preston is a guy who's been putting in the time to get name recognition as the what? Anything our District supervisors have stood for since, well, the year 2000, when district elections again became how we elected our supervisors?

Nope. Preston is strictly a conventional wisdom candidate in one of the city's most "progressive" districts. Progressives are just liberals who hate to be flanked on the left, which is why Preston calls himself a Bernie Sanders-type "socialist."

Preston makes housing his primary issue, which is the best thing about him. But where does he stand on other issues? What does he think about, for example, an important District 5 issue, the widely-ignored failure of the Masonic Avenue bike project? 

Valle Brown is on record in support of the dumb project, as is Mayor Breed, who was an awful supervisor. She was only elected in the first place because of the city's goofy Ranked Choice Voting system.

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