Tom Hall: If there is a rising tide of progressive Latino voters, perhaps it is because they feel unrepresented by the entrenched pols, who assume that they will get certain votes, regardless of how they govern.
Randy Shaw: Had Villaraigosa succeeded after becoming Los Angeles’s first Latino mayor of the modern era in 2005, he would have easily won this governor’s race. But his mayoralty ran aground over issues both personal and political.
Leonard Isenberg: To effectively take advantage of the new Latino population majority in the state, Villaraigosa needs to make himself the common point of reference for this constituency.
Randy Shaw: After doing what many thought impossible in winning election to the Attorney General as a woman of color, her statewide political strength is clear. Harris either decides to become the state’s next governor, or wins Boxer’s seat hands down.
Paul Hogarth: If Democrats make a comeback in 2012, it will be partially because they didn’t throw Nancy Pelosi under a bus.
Dick Price: Certainly, a recent tour through packed political venues around Los Angeles will tell you that there’s no lack of enthusiasm among Democrats, at least in this part of the world.
Paul Hogarth: In Washington, the filibuster rules in the U.S. Senate have stalled our federal agenda. In Sacramento, the two-thirds vote requirement has given us a blue state with an Alabama budget.
Paul Hogarth: As Gavin Newsom runs for Lieutenant Governor, he would be wise to make the passage of Proposition 25 a central part of his campaign – which ends the “two-thirds rule” for passing a budget. Because there is no better poster child for how Sacramento’s dysfunction has thrown the state off a cliff than Abel Maldonado – Newsom’s Republican opponent.
The progressive endorsements listed here were made by Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles, a local chapter of Progressive Democrats of America (PDA)
Paul Hogarth: But with no real competition among Democrats to replace Schwarzenegger, progressives have been nervous that Brown will not excite the base. This left much of the weekend’s drama on down-ballot races, where competitive primaries meant candidates for Lieutenant Governor and State Insurance Commissioner sought the Party’s endorsement going into June 8th. And while there’s much controversy around that process, it’s a good thing for Democrats.
Any trace of the Jerry Brown who sounded like Dennis Kucinich when he ran for President is gone. At this weekend’s California Democratic Party E-Board meeting, Brown got into an argument with Party Chair John Burton about single-payer health care. Brown insisted single payer “will not happen” – even though the state legislature passed it twice, only to have Arnold Schwarzenegger veto it. The only thing stopping single payer in California from happening is a Republican Governor – yet the only Democratic candidate left in the race has insisted that it will not happen.
Mayor Newsom is the most exciting thing to happen to California politics in years. He has started his campaign early, enlisted the help of an army of energetic young people who represent the future of the state, and promises to lift California out of the morass the deadening hands of the Republicans have submerged us in.
But there are “pro-tenant” Democrats in California who could get elected Governor – if they bothered to run. Antonio Villaraigosa bowed out of the race, which is unfortunate – given his track.