Kate Slate – June 7, 2022

Posted: June 2nd, 2022 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off on Kate Slate – June 7, 2022

Hello Voter!

This is the Kate Slate for the June 7, 2022, Consolidated Election in San Francisco. 

The goal of the Kate Slate is to encourage others to vote. I share my personal cheat sheet with you to help others navigate their own ballot. I write the Kate Slate myself, race-by-race, issue-by-issue, and share why I am voting the way I am. I tell you how I voted, and what impacted my decisions. Sometimes I end up voting against something that seems right up my alley if there is a fatal flaw. You probably won’t agree with me on everything, and that is okay! If you’d like to learn more about the Kate Slate, scroll down to the end.

Just please vote on or before Tuesday, June 7, 2022. In fact, bonus points if you vote early. San Francisco polls are open! 

Here is how you can vote this year:

  • Vote by mail. All registered voters were to be mailed a ballot for this election. You must return your ballot on time to be counted. If you return your ballot by mail, make sure it’s postmarked by June 7 (check collection times if you use a USPS mailbox). You can also return your ballot at your polling place on Election Day, June 7. You may also authorize another person to drop off your ballot for you. Follow the directions in your ballot package.
  • Vote using a Voter Drop Box. This is the first year that San Francisco is providing 34 drop boxes across San Francisco where you can return your ballot. These boxes are available 24/7 through 8 p.m. on Election Day, June 7.
  • Vote at the Voting Center. The Voting Center is open to provide ballots and services to all city residents who wish to pick up or drop off vote-by-mail ballots, register to vote (before or after the registration deadline), obtain personal assistance, use accessible voting equipment, obtain replacement ballots, and cast their ballots in person. This is a great resource if you make an error on your ballot and need to get a new one (as is your polling place on election day).
  • Vote in person at your polling place. They are open June 7, 7am to 8pm. They can also assist you if you make an error on your ballot and need a new one.

Even if you missed the deadline to register to vote in this election (May 23, 2022), you can still vote provisionally at all polling places in San Francisco, as well as the City Hall Voting Center. Provided you are eligible to vote in San Francisco and have not cast another ballot, your ballot will be counted. 

Go vote. Voter polls are indicating that this election may have historic low turnout. With so much at stake, please make sure you, and the voters you know, have a plan to vote. Once you vote, you can track your ballot using the voter portal, no matter how you plan to vote. But make a plan to vote. My plan is to drop my ballot off in a shiny new Voter Drop Box. Worked great in April!

Feel free to forward the Kate Slate to friends (and friends, if someone other than me–Kate–sent this to you feel free to drop me a line if you end up reading it, I like to hear who this made its way to, and I can add you to the email list for the next Kate Slate).

Grab and go! (The short version you can take with you to the polls. See below for the details.)

Governor – Luis Rodriguez
Lieutenant Governor – Mohammad Arif
Secretary of State – Shirley Weber
Controller – Ron Galperin
Treasurer – Meghann Adams
Attorney General – Rob Bonta
Insurance Commissioner – Marc Levine
Board of Equalization, District 2 – Sally Lieber
US Senator – Alex Padilla
US Representative, District 11 – Shahid Buttar
State Assembly, District 17 – Matt Haney
State Assembly, District 19 – Abstain
Superintendent of Public Instruction – Marco Amaral
City Attorney – Abstain
Prop A – Muni Reliability and Street Safety Bond – HELL YES!!!!
Prop B – Change the appointment process for Building Inspection Commission – yes
Prop C – Recall reform – YES!!!
Prop D – Create an Office of Victim and Witness Rights – no
Prop E – Amend the city’s behested payment laws – YES
Prop F – Change the membership of the Refuse Rate Board – yes
Prop G – Require employers to provide paid public health emergency leave – Yes
Prop H – Recall Chesa Boudin from the Office of District Attorney – HELL NO

Governor – Luis Rodriguez

This election is the primary election for the state, and how it currently works in California is that the two top vote-getters in the primary run-off in November for the seat. As such, I vote (for what it is worth—and it is worth something) to influence the November election: If not the outcome of that election itself, perhaps the campaign issues and how the candidates talk about and make commitments about them. 

Since incumbent Gavin Newsom is likely to get enough votes this election to be one of those two candidates, I’d suggest the other candidate on the General Election ballot in November be Luis Rodriguez. He supports universal health care, ending mass incarceration, and a Green New Deal for California. Addressing climate change while advancing economic equality—the crux of the Green New Deal, equitable health care, and criminal justice reform are some of my top issues California, so I hope you’ll join me in voting for Luis Rodriguez to center these conversations in the November race. 

I also want to give a shout out to candidate Mariana Dawson who placed in the state’s official voter information guide the paid candidate statement, “F all politicians,”  a sentiment shared widely.

Lieutenant Governor – Mohammad Arif

Now that you know my strategy for the primary races (see Governor), you know that I am going to look for the best candidate to challenge incumbent Eleni Kounalakis come November, and I found it in the delightful Mohammad Arif, who is running on a platform of free education and healthcare plus immigrant rights and environmental restoration. Yes!

Secretary of State – Shirley Weber

We count our many blessings when an inspiration like Shirley Weber gets appointed to an office like Secretary of State, the office responsible for protecting our voting rights. You have her to thank for expanding voter access with permanent vote by mail ballots sent to all voters statewide, and those ballot drop boxes where you can conveniently cast your vote-by-mail ballot vote 24/7. She also sent letters to 60k California parolees letting them know of their voter rights, and educating those who had served their time after being convicted of felonies in California on how to reclaim their right to vote. Because she was appointed, I am choosing to cast my vote for her in this primary as an endorsement of her incredible work in office to date, and I look forward to seeing more from her. 

Controller – Ron Galperin

In this race, incumbent Betty Yee is termed out, and she has endorsed two candidates. Ron Galperin, who has experience as Los Angeles City Controller, and former San Francisco City Supervisor Malia Cohen, who has no experience as controller. As such, I’m voting for Ron, who also happens to be LGBTQIA+. I anticipate Cohen and Galperin will both be on the ticket in November. 

Treasurer – Meghann Adams

I anticipate that incumbent Fiona Ma (who seems to have some scandals involving sexual harassment and political gifts) will easily make it to the ballot in November. When it comes to candidates running against her, Meghann Adams stands out as the president of her school bus drivers’ union and stands for economic justice instead of corporate welfare. I’m voting for Meghann Adams.

Attorney General – Rob Bonta

Rob Bonta is the incumbent and has done okay in office—he wrote legislation that abolished cash bail and required investigations into police-involved shootings. But, he has a history of behested payments (see Prop E) benefitting his wife’s nonprofits, so that definitely raises my eyebrows on the “avoid corruption” aspect of being a respectable public figure. The options in this race are otherwise pretty slim, unfortunately.

Insurance Commissioner – Marc Levine

Speaking of slim options in races with a side-helping of corruption…many are looking to oust problematic incumbent Ricardo Lara after he got involved in some pay-to-play scandals and pandering to the fossil-fuel industry after receiving some hefty campaign donations from them. Marc Levine stands out as the one contender running against him who has some solid ideas about fire insurance reform based on work he has already done in Marin and Sonoma counties. He supports universal healthcare, and has a record of standing up to fossil fuel companies. I feel confident in a vote for Marc Levine for Insurance Commissioner.

Board of Equalization, District 2 – Sally Lieber

Sally Lieber is running corporate-free and has an impressive resume standing up for everyday people: she authored state legislation as state assemblymember that increased minimum wage, restricted tobacco advertisements near schools, and worked to ensure rights of youth in foster care. Also on the ballot is one of San Francisco’s more notably conservative former supervisors, Michela Alioto-Pier. Don’t make the mistake of voting for her. Vote for Sally Lieber!

US Senator – Alex Padilla

Alex Padilla is another recently appointed candidate who is running, first, to finish the “special term” vacated by Vice President Kamala Harris, and then to hold the seat for the next six-year term. So far of his time in the office, I like what I see. He’s done a listening tour about infrastructure, and he used his Spanish language skills to speak out after the decision aimed at overturning Roe v. Wade came to light. So, I’ll be voting for him in both races this election so that we can see what Alex Padilla does next.

US Representative, District 11 – Shahid Buttar

Okay folks. Here’s the scoop: Before the March 2020 primary I was encouraged by the momentum for Shahid Buttar to challenge one of America’s most powerful politicians with a candidate who better reflects our district’s values. So I endorsed Shahid Buttar against Nancy Pelosi. 

But, by the time the November 2020 election rolled around, voters were led to believe he had run an apparently toxic campaign that caused numerous campaign staffers to flee and several endorsements to be revoked, including mine. Later, my pal Samir let me know that I may have been misguided, and that the allegations were likely a racism-fueled smear campaign. Yikes! 

After reading the articles Samir sent, I see that it was a mistake un-endorsing Buttar in 2020. (Hindsight being what it is.) I’m re-endorsing Buttar here in the primary, so maybe he can get a place on the ballot to have a productive conversation about what we want from our House leadership. But, I will likely abstain in this race come November, since the mighty Pelosi will easily retake her seat. 

State Assembly, District 17 – Matt Haney

No offense, but I am so tired of voting for Matt Haney this year. I like the guy, but this is the third ballot when his name will appear for this same seat. I voted for Campos (twice), not Haney, to fill the remainder of the State Assembly term left by David Chiu. And now that the damage has been done by Haney vacating his District 6 Supervisor seat, all we can do is feel sad about that outcome, and hope for the best with this one. 

State Assembly, District 19 –  Abstain

I have been unmoved by Phil Ting for several elections, even though he has sponsored legislation that brought about transportation improvements for people walking, bicycling and taking transit. But, we deserve more and San Francisco needs a representative that is going to bring badly-needed state legislation to help the city address some of its boldest challenges. Oh well!

Superintendent of Public Instruction – Marco AmaralI

This is a vote against a problematic incumbent (corruption, well-known toxic leadership) Tony Thurmond, in support of Marco Amarall, who comes to voters with fresh ideas about ending standardized testing and paying teachers $70k/year! While I may be dreaming with the god-knows-why deep support for the incumbent, this former teacher is amped to vote for Marco Amarall.

City Attorney –  Abstain

David Chiu was appointed by the mayor to this seat after it was vacated by David Herrera. Chiu is doing his usual pandering to the powerful and I’m tired of all these mayoral appointees who are all so disappointing. San Francisco deserves better.

Prop A – Muni Reliability and Street Safety Bond – HELL YES!!!!

For full disclosure, I work at the SFMTA and on projects that would be funded by this proposition. These opinions are solely mine. And, I’ll still have a job if this doesn’t pass, but we won’t have the funding needed for transportation improvements San Franciscans are really counting on, and that is the rub.

Proposition A would fund much needed and talked-about projects that needed to be done yesterday. Without this bond passing, there is simply not funding identified to do these projects. So, when I tell you now all that it will fund, if you are thinking “I want that,” about any of it, know that passing this bond with the required two-thirds majority is how to get it: 

This includes the overhaul of Potrero Yard that would enable the facilities to set up charging stations for electric buses that we need to maintain our bus fleet. Never mind the adequate space to replace tires on our Muni buses (wish I was kidding), or dignified work facilities for our maintenance team. We currently don’t have the necessary charging facilities to maintain the fleet numbers we need to operate. 

Also funded by the proposition are improvements for transit and safety projects like transit lanes, protected bike lanes, wider sidewalks, speed enforcement, and my favorite: the overhaul of our antiquated train control system that would significantly improve reliability and reduce delays on Muni Metro. People like to talk about how the train control system currently (yes, in 2022) uses floppy disks to operate. But, I like to think about all the times I have been stuck on Muni Metro in an unmoving train unnecessarily, and how this would help resolve many of the issues causing those delays. 

And it won’t raise taxes! It is a no-brainer to vote “yes” in this city where 30% do not own cars, even if you don’t currently use Muni. And, in this primary election with expected historically low voter turnout, I urge you to make sure you have a plan to vote, and those voters around you, too. It is so imperative that this pass, so for the love of transportation, vote YES!!! 

Prop B – Change the appointment process for Building Inspection Commission – yes

I am voting yes because this aligns the process whereby commissioners are appointed to the Building Inspection Commission with other San Francisco commissions, which includes appointment by the mayor and approval by the Board of Supervisors. But, I gotta say, based on the recent slew of mayoral appointments (and possibly more coming), I am less than excited to give the mayor more power.

Prop C – Recall reform – YES!!!

Are you tired of our city wasting millions on overturning the will of voters when a few rich grumps want to change the outcomes? If Prop C passes, recalls would not be allowed within the first year of a term or within a year of election, and would bar replacement appointees for running as incumbents. All around solid reform (that would have prevented a couple recalls this year). I can think of many better things for San Francisco to spend the money on than ill-conceived recalls. Vote YES!!!

Prop D – Create an Office of Victim and Witness Rights – no

This is one of those propositions with a title, and you think “okay, sure” but then you think about it and you start to wonder why we would need to create an (unfunded) office that is to provide redundant services to those provided by existing city services. And so you scratch your head, and vote no.

Prop E – Amend the city’s behested payment laws – YES

Yay for more reform! This is city work at its finest: The SF Ethics Commission authored this legislation to close a loophole that currently allows for behested payments. That is a fancy way of saying “abusing one’s power.” Currently members of the Board of Supervisors can ask companies doing business with the city to make a donation to a favored foundation or nonprofit, which can and has turned into a fund that later benefits the supervisor who made the request. They can’t take money directly from businesses working with the city, behesting payments is a sleazy work around that will be closed if this passes. Vote YES.

Prop F – Change the membership of the Refuse Rate Board – yes

This one seems trivial to me. Essentially it moves the rate-setting for garbage collection from Public Works to the Controller’s Office. This is supposedly to limit the corruption imposed by the former Public Works director who was arrested by the FBI for it, but I remain cynical that the move will actually solve for corruption. Really we just need to limit the ability for there to be a monopoly by a private corporation on garbage collection, or any public service, really.

Prop G – Require employers to provide paid public health emergency leave – Yes

Seemingly in response to the pandemic (Or climate change? Or the feeling of impending doom as the news gets progressively more dire?), if passed, this requires San Francisco employers of 100 or more to provide two weeks of paid public health emergency leave. So many of us have witnessed the hardship unpaid leave can put on people who are already dealing with the worst of today’s blows. Help ease this by voting Yes. 

Prop H – Recall Chesa Boudin from the Office of District Attorney – HELL NO

This is the most heartbreaking proposition of the ballot and I hope you will join me in voting HELL NO in this wrongful effort to recall Chesa Boudin. 

Chesa Boudin has been implementing the kinds of reforms that are exactly what he campaigned on, and the positive outcomes speak for themselves: He campaigned that he would review wrongful convictions, then he was elected and he founded the District Attorney’s Innocence Commission, experts that review wrongful conviction cases and make recommendations for possible exonerations. In April they had their first exoneration! Of someone who spent 18 years behind bars! 

Meanwhile, Chesa Boudin filed groundbreaking litigation against manufacturers of untraceable “ghost guns” and cracked down on serial plaintiffs of ADA violations. These are the things we want our District Attorney to do!

And the issues that are being raised as reasons to demand this recall are actually not things his office is responsible for doing, like preventing property crime—that is the responsibility of SFPD (who has been doing an impressive job of trying to prevent the DAs office from being successful, by the way. Get some popcorn for this story). 

Don’t let them fool you! People really don’t seem to understand how successful Chesa Boudin has been and the great benefits he is bringing to San Francisco. That’s why this is a heartbreaker. Vote HELL NO to H. 

About the Kate Slate

I write the Kate Slate for every election because when I voted for the very first time, I found myself in the voting booth surprised that I didn’t understand all the issues or know all the candidates on the ballot. Though I was politically active in my community, I felt like I showed up to take a test unprepared. The next election, I studied the ballot and shared my notes with friends, bringing about the Kate Slate.

For the past decade plus, the Kate Slate is preceded by a Slate Party my pal Sacha Ortega co-hosts with me. The Slate Party is a big informer of the Kate Slate, as are voter guides, social media, and (virtual) coffee break chatter.

And, in case you were wondering, the opinions in the Kate Slate are my own, and in no way should be thought to represent any views of anyone other than myself. I have thoughtful engaging conversations with well-informed people who sometimes shed light on aspects I hadn’t considered; I get the tacky expensive mailers you get; and, cool people like yourself send me others’ slates. I am not affiliated with any party. Happy voting!!


Comments are closed.