Updated: There may four viable candidates running for mayor of Oakland, but judging from campaign ads to date, Councilwoman Jean Quan and ex-Senator Don Perata view it as a two-person race. Quan’s ads have either touted her candidacy or attacked Perata’s. And while all of Perata’s ads have lauded his achievements, those paid by a group with close ties to him have repeatedly gone after Quan. The most recent anti-Quan piece landed in Oakland mailboxes today.
Oakland Mayoral candidate Marcie Hodge continues to violate state and local election laws by not disclosing her contributors even though she has easily spent more than $50,000 so far on billboards, mailers, and radio and TV ads. Hodge has failed to file legally required campaign finance reports in the mayor’s race, missing two statutory deadlines — October 5 and October 21. It is unlawful for a candidate to not disclose her donors by the statutory deadlines, and the penalties can be more severe if she fails to do so by Election Day.
The investigation into whether ex-state Senator Liz Figueroa lied about her official place of residence has been sent to the California Attorney General’s Office for a review of possible criminal charges. Figueroa, who is running for a spot on the Alameda County Board of Supervisors, was originally investigated by the San Mateo District Attorney’s Office. That office then forwarded its findings to the office of Attorney General Jerry Brown for final determination.
Stories you shouldn’t miss:
1. Barbara Boxer has widened her lead over Carly Fiorina to eight points, according to the respected Field Poll, the Chron reports. The poll also shows that independent voters in California are bucking a nationwide trend. Throughout the country, independents are breaking toward Republican candidates this election, but the Field Poll shows that Democrat Boxer has a seventeen-point lead among independents in California, 49 percent to 32 percent. Fiorina, who flirted heavily with the Tea Party earlier this year, is just too conservative for the state.
2. Boxer’s strong lead will help Democrats keep the Senate, but with four days to go, the odds that Dems will hold onto the House are fading fast. New York Times statistician Nate Silver is projecting that Republicans will take a commanding 232-203 advantage in the House. Silver, however, continues to forecast that Democrats will maintain a 52-48 advantage in the Senate.
Hollywood film producer Bryan Zuriff has pumped $148,000 into a new committee that is backing Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan’s candidacy for mayor, campaign finance records show. The new committee was formed by Oakland Port Commissioner Michael Lighty and the California Nurses Association, which also has reported spending $66,000 on Kaplan's behalf. The $214,000 in last-minute spending for Kaplan represents the first major outside expenditures for a mayoral candidate other than ex-senator Don Perata.
Influential San Francisco developer Joe O’Donoghue has pumped $45,000 into the Oakland City Council District 4 race in an attempt to elect political newcomer, Jill Broadhurst, public records show. O’Donoghue funneled the big donation through the local landlord group, Alameda Rental Housing Association of Northern Alameda County, which then sent out several mailers, touting Broadhurst’s candidacy. The last-minute expenditures exceeded Oakland’s campaign limit, thereby lifting the spending caps in the race. But several Oakland sources say there’s an alternative motive for the recent influx of cash — bad blood between O’Donoghue’s friend and business associate Carlos Plazola and Broadhurst’s competitor Libby Schaaf.
Stories you shouldn’t miss:
1. Jerry Brown is trouncing Meg Whitman in the governor’s race. A new Field Poll shows the ex-Oakland mayor has opened up a commanding ten-point lead over the ex-eBay CEO, 49 percent to 39 percent, the Chron reports. Brown has been leading Whitman among women, Latino, and independent voters for a while, but the Democratic attorney general now also is ahead among male voters, who had been turning strongly this election toward the GOP. With five days left, it will take a miracle for Whitman to turn this around.
Tailgate parties aren't just mindless indulgences.
Call it Big Money in Little Richmond. In fact, the City of Richmond is awash this fall in campaign cash. And a tidal wave of money is coming from Chevron Corporation. The oil giant has poured an unprecedented $1 million into an effort to elect or reelect three Richmond politicians who have been reliable Chevron votes over the years — Councilman Nat Bates, who is running for mayor, and Councilwomen Maria Viramontes and Ludmyrna Lopez, who are trying to keep their council seats.