I am a longtime reader and usually enjoy your articles but I must protest your condemnation of Jess Durfee in the June 29 issue. In my opinion, you are like the teacher who comes upon two of her kids in a fight and then sentences both to detention even if only one started it and the innocent one was merely defending himself.
There are many examples regarding the innocence of Democrats, but if you recall during 2009, President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid did a complete reversal from their GOP predecessors and sought out more input from Republicans than President Bush did during his entire two terms. Republicans chose as a matter of long-term political planning to deny Obama the bipartisanship award of the decade. They knew his popularity would make him unbeatable. Republicans in the California Legislature have learned they can block budget legislation and the public generally blames the entire Legislature and the governor, not the Republicans. It seems to me the Republicans are the “thugs.”
Jess Durfee simply wants the innocent kid in the fight to get the support he deserves, not the bully, the thug or his allies.
Tom Gingell, Tierrasanta
That's his job!
I write in response to your June 29 editorial, “Durfee's a thug.”: One of Jess Durfee's primary functions as the San Diego County Democratic Party chair is to push to get as many Democrats elected to office, in both partisan and nonpartisan races, as possible. And he's doing just that. What Tony Krvaric said in Liam Dillon's voiceofsandiego.org article, and I can't believe I'm actually referencing him on something that I agree with, is that regardless of whether the elected office shows the candidate's party designation on the ballot, every open office is an opportunity to perpetuate the party's ideals.
For an elected Democrat to openly endorse a Republican candidate for mayor—or any other office, for that matter—when there is a Democrat, especially a viable Democrat, in the running is flat out wrong.
You claim that party leaders are responsible for perpetuating partisan politics as usual and stifling the independent voices of our elected officials. You make them sound like victims! In actuality, the Democrats who endorsed Bonnie Dumanis for mayor, Roberts and Sessom, are guilty of playing politics here. These are two Democrats who come from conservative areas in the county making an endorsement purely to secure their own reelection. It has nothing to do with whether Dumanis' policies are better, because let's be honest here, there's no way she'd win purely on merit. It has everything to do with wanting to be on the winning team.
I'll admit the local Democratic Party hasn't exactly been successful in its attempts to elect a mayor in the past, but there are many, many reasons to believe that won't be the case this time. We have a huge lead in registration, a party office and staff that works year-round to build a sustainable infrastructure and thousands of volunteers that are ready to campaign for all Democrats in the county (except those who decided it was a good idea to endorse a Republican this time around). We have a viable Democratic candidate for mayor. These are all things that haven't been on the radar for the last two decades.
To call Durfee a thug for daring to demand that Democrats support one another isn't a revolutionary idea, and it certainly isn't thuggish. To think that the leader of one political party would think it is even remotely acceptable to endorse the other party's candidates is severely delusional, ignorant and idealistic.
To draw comparisons between Durfee's and Krvaric's leadership is both ludicrous and irresponsible. Durfee has been successful in growing and organizing the party during the last eight years; Krvaric has been responsible for the Republicans' demise and fall from grace. Krvaric has made multiple slimy attempts to interfere with the city redistricting process; Durfee has followed the letter of the law by staying out of it. Krvaric has brought frivolous lawsuits that waste the money of both Republican Party contributors and taxpayers. Krvaric spent his time finding loopholes in election law to include a slate mailer in sample ballots. The list could go on, and on, and on.
You should be ashamed of yourselves for contributing to standard politics as usual. What hypocrites!
Every media outlet loves to blast the Democratic Party for not standing up for ourselves or our candidates. In San Diego, that ends now.
Meg Mandy, Downtown
In last week's editorial, we reported that the Cabrillo Bridge would be closed to cars between 2012 and 2013. That information came from a Caltrans memo to the city of San Diego. turns out the bridge will be closed from January 2014 to April 2014.
This issue of CityBeat is dedicated to the quiz teams who helped us get to the Association of alternative Newsweeklies convention this weekend.