There's a third guy considering a run for San Diego's District 5 City Council seat.
And he's a Democrat.
Todd Philips, director of government relations for the San Diego Workforce Partnership, told me today that he's "seriously considering running for a seat on the City Council." If he decides to run, he'll join telecom analyst Mark Kersey and retired detective Rick Carlson. Carl DeMaio, who currently holds the District 5 seat, has filed papers to run for mayor, though not formally declared. DeMaio will have to choose between running for re-election to his council seat or for mayor; he can't run for both.
Though the redistricting process that's currently underway might change District 5's boundaries a bit, the district, which includes Scripps Ranch (where Philips lives), Rancho Bernardo, Sabre Springs and Mira Mesa, leans Republican (39 percent of registered voters). Democrats make up roughly one-third of the district's registered voters and decline-to-states account for 27 percent. DeMaio and the two council members preceding him—Brian Maienschein and Barbara Warden—are both Republican.
Philips isn't concerned. "The issues the City Council deals with aren't Republican or Democrat issues," he says. "They're quality-of-life issues—the kinds of things that affect everyday life and aren't party-specific."
Though Philips' name might not be familiar to the average voter, he's worked in local government for awhile. Prior to the Workforce Partnership, he was the director of public policy for the San Diego Housing Commission and worked on Scott Peters' and Toni Atkins' City Council campaigns. Currently, he's a member of the Scripps Ranch Planning Group. Philips has a law degree from the University of San Diego and a master's in public administration from the University of Houston.
As far as issues go, he cites local-jobs creation and community investment as top priorities. So, too, is fire protection. And, on the latter issue is where Philips might find his biggest supporters. Kersey's aligned himself with DeMaio, of whom the city's fire fighters are none too fond.
Philips declined to comment on the job he thinks DeMaio's done.
"I'm going to have to work with anybody who wins the mayor's race," he says. Though, this doesn't mean he thinks DeMaio will win. "I would say that about anybody else who's running."
Update: Veteran political consultant Jennifer Tierney has confirmed that she'll sign on with Philips' campaign if he runs.
An earlier version of this post said that Philips sits on the city's consolidated plan advisory board. He had to resign that post due to a conflict.