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This letter is the first official statement of the League of Pissed-Off Voters regarding our endorsement in District 5. We’ve been credited with both maintaining our original endorsement — and for pulling it — even though no members have spoken directly with candidates or the press about a final decision. So, listen up, people because this is it.
We are committed to making San Francisco a livable city with a heart. A model city for the rest of the country, one that will do what’s right in spite of a toxic political climate: empower women and people of color, legalize gay marriage, reform campaign finance, create a sanctuary city, give school board voting rights to immigrant parents so they can make decisions that affect their children, uphold rent control and policies that prioritize small businesses over corporations, and reject BS policies like stop and frisk and voter suppression that are trending nationally. This is why we need progressives in this town.
In light of recent events, the League of Pissed-Off Voters has reevaluated our endorsement and decided to not make any official endorsement for District 5 Supervisor. The voting process to change our endorsement was difficult, emotional, and frankly, really trying on everyone. Our bylaws weren’t designed to respond to a political shit-storm as crazy as this one (we’ll revisit our bylaws after the election). Some of us are standing by Julian Davis, some of us believe we should pull our endorsement, and some of us are really having trouble wrapping their heads around this tough issue. It’s hard and complicated and emotional — but we won’t let that fuck up the League and all that we’ve built and all that we believe in.
What we can all agree on, is that politicians are whole people. When we vote to endorse candidates, it is with the understanding that people are flawed. People fuck up. People grow. People change. We stake our reputation on progressive values like restorative justice that invests in this process of healing people instead of locking them up and throwing away the key. When we invest in people, we hold them accountable and don’t throw them away with yesterday’s scandal-packed newspaper when there is an opportunity for growth and healing.
We know that Julian Davis shares the same political goals of the League, and he’s been a member for many years — but allegations of sexual harassment need to be taken seriously. Attempting to silence those who speak out is never, ever okay. We believe that a true progressive leader should work to find understanding. His public statements since these allegations show that he’s not qualified to be a leader in District 5. We have voted to withdraw our #1 endorsement of Julian Davis.
We think that regardless if Davis wins, loses, or drops out of the race, he needs to do some serious soul searching over this and make amends—both with the women he has offended and with all of us who have spent too many tough hours agonizing over this. We haven’t seen any indication that he’s doing that yet.
We have voted to not endorse any candidate for District 5 Supervisor. In our original vote, Christina Olague and John Rizzo tied for 2nd. Their responses to our questionnaire show they share our values, and they have impressive histories of good work in the City. But Rizzo doesn’t seem to be generating much excitement, and Olague turned a bunch of us off when she endorsed Ed Lee for mayor. We urge District 5 voters to do their own research to find candidates that they feel comfortable ranking in this race and serving the residents of District 5.
The District 5 Action group put together a helpful questionnaire and comparison of the candidates: http://www.d5action.org/election_resources
Although the League will not make an official D5 endorsement, we need to make it clear that we cannot stand behind the politics of London Breed. We respect the work she’s done in the Fillmore and Western Addition, and we think she is sincere in wanting to help the District as Supervisor, but her responses to our questionnaire show major disagreements with the League, and with the other major candidates in the race: she supported the civil-liberties squashing Sit/Lie law, she supported the shady Lennar development deal in Bayview/Hunters Point, and she is receiving massive funding from big landlords. While we were conflicted about Julian Davis and other candidates — one thing we all agree on is: “Anybody but London Breed”.
The League of Pissed-Off Voters