How Pete's Voting 2016!
The version of the browser you are using is no longer supported. Please upgrade to a supported browser.Dismiss

View only
RegionIssue/CandidatePete's RecommendationRationale
US of APresident (Dem primary)Gloria La Riva, Peace and Freedom (Jill Stein, Hillary Clinton also choices I won't be mad at you about:) I think folks already well know the imperitive to stop the rampant racist misogyinst who is on the ballot for the GOP, and there is plenty more to be said about not only organizing and voting against him, but also naming and actively fighting all the forces of hatred that he has bolstered, and the forces of complacency within all of us that have allowed him to reach this point. We have much work to do. I also think we've got choices in California of who to vote for while we're doing that work. If I were living in a swing state, I would be voting for Hillary Clinton, someone who though qualified for the role and whose historic campaign I recognize the importance of and whose embrace of more progressive policies through the primary I've been heartened by, I disagree with on many deep issues. Neo-liberal economics, warhawk foreign policy, not strong enough positions on climate, etc. But I live in California, and I guess you do to, and we've got a rare opportunity to encourage the Democats to step left, to legitimize the possibility of breaking the two party system, and not be beholden to a less bad candidate. Jill Stein from the green party has some positions on vaccines and defense that I take issue with, so I'm going with Gloria La Riva from the Peace and Freedom party.)
Us senateKamala harrisKamala Harris has had rockstar status for a while now in California politics, and for good reason- she's a gifted politician and comes to the table with a strong progressive pedigree. That's not to say she's lived up to the billing yet- yes, she's done some great things as attorney general around housing, been vocal about prison reform, and managed the ludicrous ballot initiative system well in her time- but I've yearned for her to break out of the cautious front runner candidate role she's inhabited for several years now and tell us what she's really about. Needless to say, I'm confident what she's about is better than than her rival, congresswoman Loretta sanchez, who is a step to the right of Kamala on most issues, and has taken to some unfortunate off the cuff racist remarks, comments in support of police who've perpetuated violence, and consistent rightward lean on economic and environmental issues. Here's hoping Kamala lives up to her potential.
Congress District 12Preston PicusNancy Pelosi will likely win, but Picus's campaign essentially naming corporate and big money campaign contributions as the major problem in politics is worth supporting. He's a solid progressive, and a decent showing in this election can help keep Pelosi's mind with her constiuents.
Congress District 13Barbara LeeStill doing pretty great
Congress District 17Mike HondaA repeat from 2014, with the added wrinkle to Khanna's campaign that they stole some funder data from Honda's campaign- another reason to vote for the incumbent. Honda’s been a solid progressive voice in congress for a long time, and Khanna represents a new kind of Democrat that is unabashed in courting corporations and welcoming them to influence, or sometimes replace, public institutions. This one’s going to be close, and may tell us a great deal about the future of politics in California. I, for one, hope Khanna doesn’t have a big role in that future. Vote for Honda, and tell your friends.
StateProp 51Meek NoThis looks like a slam dunk fund the schools kinda thing- and I'm a slam dunk fund the schools kinda guy- but this one doesn't meet the standard. Funded entirely by the construction industry, this has the incentives and mechanisms backwards: it's massive subsidies to the industry encourage attention to the school districts that get to the faucet first (i.e., the wealthy ones) and not to the schools that need it most (the not so wealthy ones). It also would serve to encourage sprawl by incentivising more building, not smarter building. I say let's fix the mechanism, add some equity, some consideration of long term upkeep costs, and come back at it.
Prop 52Meek NoFunding Medi-Cal is incredibly important, but this calcifies a revenue stream (the Medi-Cal Fee) in the same way that many ballot box budgeting ideas have in the past- strangling our budget process and forcing terrible choices. I think the fee should stay, I just don't think we should force it into the constitution and pull it out of the budget process. I'm gonna vote no.
Prop 53Vote NoThings I'm not a fan of: right wing millionaires funding ballot initiatives for their own gain, and legislating via the ballot. This qualifies for both of those. This initiative would force statewide votes on infrastructure projects, and is a shortsighted attempt to stop the expansion of the infrastructure projects that are on their way, hamstringing legislators from doing their job.
Prop 54Meek NoThis is another case of "seems a lot better than it is". This is entirely funded by millionaire and arch conservative Charles Munger, who I rarely (read:never) find myself on the same page as. This would force legislation to be in print for 72 hours before it's voted on. Good in principle, and an effective way to stop last minute changes to bills before they become law- however, the way that legislation is decided these days, this allows the intensely monied interests that dominate our legislature to mount massive pressure and squash good ideas- a power grassroots and community groups can't wield. Plus, did I mention i don't like things being decided on at the ballot box?
Prop 55YES!Continue a tax on the wealthiest? And if it doesn't pass we get launched back into the dark days of decimating schools and services year after year? Yeah, let's pass this one.
Prop 56Meek YesThis is a really tough one for me. The tobacco industry is about as evil as any of the sordid characters on this years ballot. Which is why I wish someone would finally have the courage to direct an aggressive, directive tax directly at them- the sadistic corporate hacks who profit off poisoning other humans. Instead, we continue to punish poor people for getting addicted, and in this measure, charge smokers $2 more per pack. We've got to do better. Still, I think it's important to defeat the forces of dehumanizing greed where we can- so I'll be voting for this one and hope it passes.
Prop 57YES! This is perhaps the most exciting thing on the statewide ballot- and helps us continue to march towards a future where we don't see prisons as an option to solve our social ills. Altering parole and providing a credit system to get folks home earlier, and shifting the mechanism away from charging children as adults and extending sentences. Vote Yes, and tell your friends.
Prop 58YES! What better year to repeal the racist, shameful prop 227 that eliminated multi-lingual education in California? Passing this will allow our kids to learn in a multi-lingual approach.
Prop 59YesCitizens United is pretty awful- and though this wouldn't end it, it would be a nice message to send.
Prop 60NoFrom the school of "Trust those who are most at risk", I'm following the lead of the workers in the adult film industry and voting no. The punitive measures it opens up are far reaching and to ripe for abuse. Oh, right, and the thing about not trying to do to many things at the ballot box that should be done in the legislature.
Prop 61YesForcing the states hand to negotiate with the pharmecutical industry. Not the most cleanly written initiative, but the upside- and more importantly, beating the drug companies as they spend hundreds of millions to stop this initiative- are reason enough to vote yes.
Prop 62Meek yesYes, I desperately want to end the dealth penalty. And yes, this initiative does that, and I'm going to vote for it. But by replacing the needle in the arm with life without parole, their simply instituting another, softer, quiter, less "morally objectionable" death sentence. There are not good choices here- and what we need is an effort to end condemning someone to death regardless of method- sitting in a cage or lying on a table. One added element that's solidifying my vote for Prop 62- if 62 and 66 both pass, the one with the most votes becomes law- so though imperfect, I'm going to vote yes.
Prop 63Meek yesSo, much of what this initiative would do was already passed legislatively this year. Adding to restrictions to purchasing ammunition, which I think is a great idea, the new tenants would include a slightly more restrictive process for purchasing ammunition, making it more difficult to purchase ammunition out of state, requiring reporting of stolen guns, and holding gun sellers to the same standard as purchasers. All good things. Though I'll eventually support it, I've got serious qualms with this initiative: First, though in a limited way, it does include sentence enhancements, which is a failed choice every single time. Second, it calcifies the narrative of keeping weapons out of the hands of "bad people", those who've been targeted by the corrupt criminal legal system. Third, it's simply not ambitious enough. I'll vote for this, largely to notch another defeat for the parasitic gun industry, but sign me up for an initiative that targets those actually at fault for the abhorrent and irresponsible way we deal with gun violence in our communities- the corporate gun makers themselves.
Prop 64YesSure, let's legalize marijuana- though from the "Should've-written-this-different" desk, I really wish proponents would have made efforts to slow the corporate take-over of this crop, and the pushing out of the locally based people who have been doing this work for a long time. Plus, glad that there are provisions that start the process of getting folks who've been locked up for pot out, but wish that there'd be a little more expedience to it than what's written in already, and that it didn't give money to cops for enforcement, nor ban folks who're coming out of the system from participating in the industry. That's bonkers.
Prop 65NoCongrats corporate plastic bag industry! This wins the "most insidious" award on this years statewide ballot. Put on by the plastic bag industry to confuse us and to split the environmental vote, the meager gains of this do not outweigh the political costs. We should vote this down and vote yes on prop 67.
Prop 66NO!Seriously, this initiative is aimed at trying to make it easier to kill people at the hands of the state. Um, no thanks.
Prop 67YES!Don't get it twisted like a giant plastic gyre in the ocean- vote yes to keep the plastic bag ban. Vote yes. Yes.
State senate district 9Nancy skinner This is the toughest choice on my ballot, but only because our solid senator loni Hancock has two very strong and capable options to replace her as she retires-my choice is nancy skinner. Sandre swanson served as a bold and strong assemblyman for years, and his values and talents are resolute, though he made a couple choices late in his term that fell short of his capabilities, and his time working w the city of oakland is forgettable. Fortunately for us though, nancy skinner, one of the most vocal, honest and progressive voices the legislature has seen, is running for this seat as well. Her tireless advocacy for anti- poverty programs, environmental justice, against corporate welfare and the sprawling inhumane prison system in our state has been inspiring. In addition (and this is true of Sandre as well) she's just a genuinely nice person- an activist at heart who knows her role in the public sphere. Wherever nancy goes, ill follow. (This is one of those races with our flawed "top two" primary system that will probably have a repeat in November, but for now, vote for nancy!)
State senate district 11Jane Kim Jane Kim is my choice for state senate in San Francisco. Filling the shoes of mark Leno will not be easy, but jane has become and remains a solid progressive voice in sfs board of supes, and she will do really well in Sacramento, finding her feet on issues like poverty, prisons, and the environment.
State senate district 15Jim beallThis is a nasty- and desperately important- race this year. Beall has been a long time progressive champion, rooted in mental health and trample tattoo issues, and finding his voice on prisons and environmental justice. He'd be a great choice even if Nora campos wasn't running as a corporate democrat. After years of half hearted or outright stalling tactics in the assembly, campos is running having taken in buckets of money from oil, pge, the tech industry and more. Watch this race- it's one of (far too) many pitting actual progressive values against the new brand of corporate dem.
Assembly Distrct 15Tony Thurmond This is one of the most closely watched races in the state, and luckily, I feel good about either Tony or Elizabeth going to Sacramento. Both are strong progressive folks, and would step into Nancy Skinner’s enormous, admirable shoes well. I’m voting for Tony, though, for a few reasons: he’s proud of his record voting against Chevron at the Richmond city council, he’s vocal about single payer health care, reforming Prop 13, banning fracking, not just stalling it, and his background in social work, education programs, and community organizing I think will drive a stronger agenda in Sacramento.
Assembly Distrct 16CHERYL cook-kalioDon't know much about cook, but I know that baker is way more conservative than her district, and needs to be replaced
Assembly District 17David ChiuHard to stomach this vote after the irresponsible bloodbath in 2014 (hashtag david campos forever) but, David Chui is a better assemblyman than he was a supervisor in sf, and though I still wish David campos had won a year ago, I'm glad David's doing good work in Sacramento.
Assembly District 18Rob BontaRob's a good guy, let's send him back.
Assembly Distrct 19Phil TingPhil ting has new statewide responsibilities as the budget chair, where I'm hoping he can show his progressive values, and work more closely with community on his (and my) pet project of dismantling the repugnant prop 13 sooner rather than later.
Assembly District 20Bill QuirkGoofy guy, but has done decently well.
Regional BART Board District 7Lateefah Simon!Lateefah is an absolute rock-star. Legally blind single mother, lifelong badass racial and reprodcutive justice organizer, and, an actual BART rider on top of that. She'll be good for a board that has struggled to step boldly into issues that affect low income and communities of color- the BART workers rights, BART police abuses, and the Black Friday 14 prosecution. Excited to see Lateefah in this role, and replace Mallet, who has been consistently opposed to progessive values on the board.
BART Board District 3Rebecca SaltzmanRebecca is doing great work, and I think has genuinely learned from the experiences with the Black Friday 14 and the union, and is emerging as a stronger voice for justice and equity because of those events.
BART Board District 5John McPartlandMore progressive than his opponent, bring him back to the board.
BART Board District 9Bevan DuftyBevan has spent a career in thoughful, genuine public service in SF, and is getting more and more progressive as time goes on and the city is harder on homeless, seniors, and other low-income folks whom he stands with. He'll be good in this role.
AC Transit Board At LargeChris PeeplesDoing a decent job. I wish he'd switch his position on the expensive Van Hool busess, but he's an asset to the board.
AC Transit Board Ward 2Greg HarperThough not a solid progressive, he's a thoughful and pragmatic member and should come back to the board.
EB Regional Park Director Ward 2Dee RosarioDee Rosario: “I want to see the Park District become not only the largest land owner in the East Bay, but an environmental leader, dedicated to enhancing the environment by maximizing educational opportunities, conserving natural resources, incorporating alternative energy sources, reducing its greenhouse gas footprint, recycling, and restoring areas damaged by human activity." Sounds good to me.
EB Regional Park Director Ward 4Ellen CorbettCorbett is a great progressive and former Senator, and I'll be happy to see her in the role.
Measure RRYesFunding BART! Important to fund keeping the core whole before talking about expansion.
Measure C1YesJust renews an existing tax for AC Transit. Yup.
Alameda CountyA1YesA good step towards the staggering problem of housing inaffordability. Wish it was more aggressive/more targeted to the poorest folks, but worth a yes vote.
Superior court 1Scott JacksonI voted for Barbara Thomas in June, but have recently realized she has opposed rent control and restrictions on no-cause evictions- enough for me to move my vote to the capable, widely respected Jackson.
Oakland City Council District 1Dan KalbDan's done a decent job in this role- and is being targetted by the police bullies for doing so. Vote for him.
City Council District 3Noni SessionNoni is a newcomer to politics, but I like her vision and her connection to the local community. Lynette Gibson McElhaney has faltered when provided opportunities for real leadership- around the E 12th street giving away public land to private hands, among others. Let's give Noni a chance.
City Council District 5Noell GalloGallo has been better than anticipated, including being the lone principled vote against the E 12th deal. His opponent is part of the cabal led by the mayor, endoresed and funded by the police and developer interests. We're better off with Gallo.
City Council District 7Nehanda ImaraThe clearest choice of them all. Nehanda is a brilliant, grounded community organizer who's answered the call for a change in leadership in deep east Oakland. Larry Reid has got to go.
City Council At- LargeRebecca KaplanRebecca continues to be mostly good on council, though consistently falls short of the visionary leadership I think we all hoped she could inhabit. Her opponent, Peggy Moore, is the ringleader of the slate running on money from police and developers- and doesn't share the values I'd like to see represented in Oakland. Vote for Kaplan.
Board of Education District 1Don McLeayThe School Board races are an intense battle between a massive, massive amount of corporate money and a group of thoughtful, commited people who are dedicated to making schools community owned, driven, and accessible to all Oaklanders. Don is a great example of the latter.
Board of Education District 31. Kyaryshi Wiginton 2. Ben LangKyaryshi is a bright and emerging voice for the betterment of all students, working as a youth worker and a commited organizer. The incument Jumoke Hodge is the most vocally pro-charter voice in this pitched battle, and removing her would be an important step.
Board of Education District 51. Mike Hutchinson 2. Roseann TorresHutchinson is as principled as they come, and Torres is actually doing quite well in the role. Both are better than their corporate backed opponent.
Board of Education District 7Chris JacksonJackson is another promising voice taking on incumbent James Harris, the founder of GO Public Schools, the organization driving and funding the rising corporate agenda in Oakland. Vote for Chris!
G1NoThis is a parcel tax to fund salary for school employees- both things I support. Unfortunately, the vile corporate charter movement was at the table designing this thing to make sure they could have access to the revenue generated, and has dumped a massive amount of money in here and into the fever pitch school board races. And now, they're lying to voters about the inevitability of that funding mechanism. I trust the leadership at Parent's United for Public Schools, who are at the forefront of naming and fighting against the massive corporate interests of charter schools that are pouring into Oakland. Whether this passes or not, our work is to defend accountable, responsible public schools, and push against this rising tide.
HHYesDespite the 80000 what glossy mailers the soda industry has put in your mailbox say, this is not a grocery tax. It's designed after the successful measure in berkeley in 2014, aimed at distributors and not at poor individuals or small businesses. It still has regressive effects, but is worth passing.
IIMeek YesThough this may benefit developers as well as affordable housing advocates, allies of mine encourage a yes vote for the benefit of the possibility or more affordable housing. So i'm going with that.
JJYES!Proud to support this desperately important measure to increase renter protections.
KKMeek NoFrom allies of mine: Although Oakland's city infrastructure needs additional investment, the most urgent issues facing the city are not sufficiently reflected in this bond measure's spending priorities. The portion dedicated to affordable housing should be much larger, and with City Council deciding on how the funds will be allocated, there is no guarantee that spending on city infrastructure will be equitable and prioritize Oakland's low-income communities.
LLAmbivalent YesThat this is on the ballot is a testament to the powerful, dynamic organizers of survivors and families of vicitims of police violence and their incredible organizing over the past few years. Sadly, the mayor and the city council significantly watered down what would have been a strong, transparent police commision, and forced more mayoral control. We've seen how that goes, and under Schaaf's leadership, it has not been pretty. Still, I'm not sure we get another chance at something like this- I'd understand a no vote and an insistence on taking another bite at this foul, rotten apple of reigning in the racist, mysoginist OPD, but I'll be voting yes- and signing up for the long fight for real public safety in our city.
BerkeleyMayor1. Jesse Arreguin, 2. Kriss WorthingtonA really important race about the future of Berkeley- Arreguin and Worthington are dedicated, consistent progressives and are committed to responsible, inclusive approaches to development. Laurie Capiteli comes from the Tom Bates school, and is much closer to the "build it all, build it now, equity will figure itself out" school. Not a fan. Vote for Jesse.
City Council District 21. Nanci Armstrong Temple 2. Cheryl DavilaNancy is as good as it gets- really sharp policy mind, unfettered values, vision of a Berkeley for everyone. Moore, the incumbent, is tied deeply to developers, and has to go.
City Council District 31. Ben Bartlett 2. Al Murray 3. Mark CoplanIt'll be tough to replace the leadership of retiring Max Anderson, but Ben comes with a long pedigree from the neighborhood and strong values of inclusion and equitable development. He'll be important to keep an eye on, but think he'll make a solid council member.
City Council District 5Sophie HahnStrong progressive running to replace a moderate- which would be a great swing for the board.
City Council District 6Fred DodsworthIn a conservative district, let's replace the incumbent, Wengraf, with a solid vote for rent control, affordable housing, and community planning.
Berkeley Rent BoardChristina Murphy, Alejandro Soto-Vigil, Leah Simon-Weisberg, and Igor Tregub, Vote for all 4!This is a really exciting slate of folks, all committed tennant protection advocates, rooted in the community, and born out of a community process that demanded leadership to stem the landloard power surge in Berkeley. Proud to support them!
Measure U1YES!"Crafted through an open community process spanning months to develop a solution to the housing crisis, this measure sponsored unanimously by Berkeley City Council will tax the rental income of big landlords to provide funding for affordable housing. Measure U1 is expected to raise up to $3.5 million annually, increasing over time as rent increases." This is a great thing, and proud of the process that landed it on the ballot.
Measure DDNO!This, on the other hand, is gross. Big Landlords saw U1 coming, and put their own measure up to confuse and distract- and allow them to avoid paying 2 million dollars a year, and be a part of controlling the conversation about affordable housing going forward. Basta. Vote No.
Measure AAYESExcellent suite of protections- reducing evictions, increasing resources for people with disabilities and seniors.
Measure E1YesReplaces an important school funding element- good for everybody.
Measure T1YesGood infrastructure investment.
Measure V1YesWe've gotta vote yes to keep existing revenue in place- otherwise, serious cuts would be necessary.
Measure W1YesCitizens Redistricting! Yay!
Measure X1YesPublic financing! Yay!
Measure Y1YesAllowing 16 and 17 year olds to vote for school board- that's what I'm talking about!
Measure Z1YesReducing barriers to low income housing! Yay!
Measure BBNoThis is part of the confusing Minimum wage game in Berkeley: The city council approved a minimum wage increase in September, but to late to pull these competing measures off the ballot. So it doesn't really matter, but, for failsafes and for optics, vote for CC, the more progressive version, and against BB, the more conservative one.
Measure CCYesSee above!
San FranciscoBoard of Supes District 1Sandra Lee FewerMan, I am so sad to see Eric Mar, David Campos, and John Avalos leave the board. There is a silver lining- Sandra is a brilliant, sturdy, and capable person to step into Eric's shoes.
Board of Supes District 3Aaron PeskinPeskin's return to the board last year had an impact, and his presence has galvanized the progressives and drawn lines in the sand around policing, the jail expansion, and other vital issues.
Board of Supes District 5 Dean PrestonThis is the battle royale in SF this year- Preston is an excellent tennant lawyer and leads Tennants Together, is visionary about the city he (and I) want to see, and is running as part of the progessive movement. Breed has been on the wrong side of to many issues, (AirBnb) and if this seat remains in her hands, it will cement her as the lynchpin of the conservatives on council. This is where the actions at.
Board of Supes District 7Norman YeeYee should stay on the board- he continues to grow into the role.
Board of Supes District 9Hilarry RonenFrom the Gaurdian: "About as clear a choice as there can be. Ronen, chief of staff to Sup. David Campos, has a history as a civil-rights lawyer and a part of the progressive movement. Josh Arce, her opponent, was appointed to the DCCC by the real-estate industry’s lobbyist, Mary Jung, voted with her most of the time, and singlehandedly shot down a resolution suggesting that the San Francisco Police Department adopt modern standards on use of force." Vote for this Hillary.
Board of Supes District 11Kimberly AlvarengaKim is the real deal, and again, with big John Avaolos shoes to fill, she's got the pedigree and values to do so. Plus, she's running against a real estate developer who has run a dirty, personal campaign.
Superior Court Judge Victor Hwang A dedicated public defender, civil rights attorney, and discrimination expert, Hwang will make an excellent judge- far the superior choice over his opponent who would fit the bill of prosecuter turned judge, and is deeply tied to Mayor Ed Lee.
Board of Education Matt Haney, Stevon Cook, Mark SanchezIt's a vital moment for the school board, with picking a new superintendent on top of the whole whitening and wealthing of the city, charter schools, and on and on. Haney is a proven champion and a friend, and Cook and Sanchez have been deeply involved in the schools, fought against military in schools, and are dedicated to equity and justice in the classroom.
Community College BoardShannell Matthews, Tom Temprano, Rafael MandlemanEqually trying times for the Community College board- Shanell is a former student and a dynamic leader with deep progressive roots. I'm really proud to support her. Tom will be great, and Rafael has been decent on the board and should go back.
Prop AYesNot the most cleanly written, but the schools need funding and my flags on it are not too red.
Prop BYesCity College has survived the persistent attacks of an aggresive and brutal corporatizing force, and still continues to do amazing work. They need this funding stream to continue.
Prop CYesThis one's easy- simply let's the city spend money it already has on what it was intended for- affordable housing.
Prop DYesSF has been dominated by the "Appoint and remain" political vice grip that takes place year after year- this would create a creative system to make appointments only serve til the next election, and level the playing field for open seats.
Prop EYesHave rich folks pay to have the city maintain trees on the street. Sure.
Prop FYES!Letting 16 and 17 year olds vote. Such a wonderful idea. Vote for it, regardless of your age.
Prop GYesNot much substance to this police accountability reform, when so much is desperately needed, but it does no harm.
Prop HYesThis "would create a unique position with the day-to-day responsibility to make sure that local government is working for the people of the city." Good stuff.
Prop I YesA dignity fund to support services for seniors and people with disabilites- led by some of the best folks doing work in SF. Vote yes.
Prop J and KYesGood services and deserving of a yes vote, but frustrated that the mayor chose to go with regressive taxation to deal with homelessness crisis he's contributed heavily to.
Prop LYesA little less mayoral control of Muni.
Prop MYesSF's Mayor has too much power in development and housing, and this adds a little more oversight and community involvement through a commission.
Prop NYesYes! Why not let people, regardless of their place of birth, who have children in schools vote for the leaders of those school systems?
Prop O NoLennar corp, a big doesn't-play-nice-developer, is trying to step outside the rules to build office space willy-nilly in Hunters Point, which would double down on gentrification and techifying the city.
November 2016
June 2016
November 2014
June 2014
November 2012
November 2010
November 2008