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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Unions and City Elections

The sagacious Willie Brown, former California Assembly speaker and San Francisco mayor, writes at The San Francisco Chronicle:
The real news in the San Diego mayoral race isn't that a Republican won, but that the candidate backed by public-employee unions lost.
That is a real shift in California politics. And it's the second time it's happened in a big-city mayoral race in less than a year.
In San Diego on Tuesday, City Councilman Kevin Faulconer, a middle-of-the-road Republican, knocked the stuffing out of the union-backed Democrat, Councilman David Alvarez.
And he did it in part by hammering on the big union money behind Alvarez, much of which came from out of town.
In some ways it was a replay of the Los Angeles mayoral race last year, when labor's heavy backing of Wendy Greuel ultimately proved to be a liability for her in her race against Eric Garcetti.
It might be time for the public-employee unions to go on a retreat and rethink both their tactics and their goals. The politicians they're backing aren't exactly winning points by running on platforms of allowing transit strikes and maintaining the status quo on public pensions.
If labor's candidates can lose in heavily Democratic Los Angeles and in San Diego, they can lose here, too.
P.S. I was a big admirer of David Alvarez's- and a contributor to his campaign as well.