Posts Tagged Leland Yee

“Asian American Hustle”? With California State Senator Leland Yee’s arrest, Asian American political empowerment in the Bay Area takes a huge hit

Here’s when I last saw Sen. Leland Yee. He’s not a particularly warm guy. But maybe I should have sensed, he was just going through the motions, and that at age 65, he was looking for an exit plan.

I was the emcee of a community event in the Philippine Consulate in San Francisco last October, and he was the featured speaker. The event honored the day the  U.S. landed on Leyte during WWII,  whereby General Douglas MacArthur and Filipinos retook the Philippines and changed the course of the war. Yee was there to present a Senate  resolution honoring the day.

I remember Yee to be all business that day, and not any different from normal. He was there for the community, as always.

And yet, after losing the SF’s mayoral race and gaining a new $70,000 debt, and with the pressure of being term limited and being forced to seek a new job (was Secretary of State, the overseer of elections, really all that appealing?), I should have sensed the musical chairs game of politics was beginning to get old.

If I had, then maybe Wednesday’s sordid tale of a bizarre and surreal FBI sting that includes drugs, convicted gang members nicknamed “Shrimp Boy,” and talk of illegal firearms from Muslim groups in the Philippines would not have been such big a surprise.

But with the key figure in all of that being Yee, I have to admit to being flabbergasted.

This is a case that rocks the Bay Area’s Asian American political scene hard…

Continue reading this piece at  http://www.aaldef.org/blog

 

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Ranked Choice to determine history in SF as Lee leads by 13 percent in first round of mayoral race

For whatever people may say about Ranked Choice Voting, it sure didn’t cut into the power of incumbency.

Even a short-time interim candidate has an enormous advantage as we witnessed with Ed Lee.

His vote pattern for the night was fairly predictable: A huge lead with nearly 40 percent of the early mail in vote,  and then a gradual settling to 31 percent (44,451 votes) by the time all the precincts were counted.

The showing of Supervisor John Avalos (26,447/18.7 percent), and City Attorney Dennis Herrera (15,967/1127 percent) were also somewhat predictable. In a Democratic town, both were one and two on the party slate card. A huge advantage and what some wondered was a racist tactic. Five key Asian American candidates, including the interim, and none get named to one of  the top two slots?

The real question mark was how the Asian American candidates would do on their own, and it seemed break  down by money raised. Boardof  Supervisor President David Chiu raised the most money in the least time compared to the other candidates overall. But without the party or incumbency behind him, he  managed only a  fourth place finish (12,655/8.93 percent).

State  Sen. Leland Yee was next with 10,595 votes, or  7.48 percent of the vote, perhaps showing how most of his ardent support in his two-county senate seat may be primarily in San Mateo County.

Public Defender Jeff Adachi was sixth with 9.075 votes or 6.41 percent.  Adachi filed his candidacy on the last day and was also tied to a bold but unpopular pension reform proposal  that also lost on Tuesday.

Just imagine if Ed Lee had kept his word to David Chiu and not run for Mayor.

Chiu just might be sitting were Lee is right now, leading—but not by a majority.

Instead,  the top 6 finishers have 65.5 percent of the vote.

That means that likely the bottom ten with 35 percent of the vote will determine if and when Ed Lee gets the majority he needs.

Lee sits at 31.38. If he’s on slightly more than 19 percent of the second choice ballots of the bottom 10 candidates, he wins. It may be over before we have to count  the No.2 choice of Yee at  5th place.

This is either the power of the folly of Ranked Choice Voting. The bottom folks have more power than you think. 

Wouldn’t it be better just to have a runoff? More costly, but perhaps more transparent and definitely easier to understand. 

RCV makes one wonder, “What the hell happened to my vote?”

The next tally is due by 4pm PST.

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Let the games begin: 100 percent of the vote has been counted in SF, and Ed Lee needs 19 percent more of Ranked Choice ballots to win

Interim Mayor Ed Lee finished the count of first choice ballots with 44, 451 votes or 31.38 percent.

John Avalos was next with 26,447 votes, or 18.67 percent.

 Dennis Herrera was third with 15,967 or 11.27 percent.

David Chiu was fourth with  12,655 votes, 8.93 percent.

Only these three have an outside chance of catching Lee who needs 50 percent plus 1.

He better hope he was nice to supporters of the 5th through 10th finishers.

They are:

Leland Yee with 10,595 votes  or 7.48 percent.                                                                  

Jeff Adachi, 9,075 votes, or 6.41 percent.

Bevan Dufty, 6704 votes, or 4.73 percent.

Tony Hall, 5,164 votes, or 3.65 percent.

Michela Alioto Pier, 5,063 votes, or 3.57 percent

Joanna Rees, 2,280 votes, or 1.61 percent

These candidates  carry the bulk of the also-ran vote. As they get eliminated, their 2nd and 3rd choice ballots get distributed to whomever is designated.

If Ed Lee gets just  19 percent more of those votes he wins and makes history as the city’s first elected Asian American mayor.

This is where the last minute mudslinging might make a difference. Lee got his first place votes, but did all the news of voter fraud and campaign impropriety get him knocked off other candidates’ No.2 or No.3 ballots?

If it did, the trend of the shrinking Ed Lee lead could continue as Avalos, Herrera and possibly Chiu pick up 2nd choice votes.

If  no one has a majority, then the registrar starts counting the third choice votes.

Is this really worth not having another election between the top two candidates?

While the elections office listed an 11:30on  release of results, it looks as if the new results from the ranked choice balots will be at 4pm on Wednesday.

By then, Lee could have 50 percent plus 1, or not. If he didn’t get enough people to make him their No.2 choice, this could be a long and frustrating count lasting until Friday.

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Update:With 59 percent of precincts counted in SF Mayoral race, Lee’s early lead wilts, Avalos comes on, other APA candidates trail

With 59 percent of the votes now counted,  Ed Lee’s early big lead has shrunk to just a 17 percentage point lead over his next challenger, Supervisor John Avalos.

Lee had 36,956 vote or 33.28 percent of the vote. Avalos had 18,496 votes or 16.66 percent.

City Attorney Dennis Herrera was third with 12,482 or 11.24 percent of the vote.

As expected, the race tightens with Avalos, the top name on SF Democratic voter pamphlets, picking up steam.

The other premier Asian American candidates, David Chiu, Leland Yee, and Jeff Adachi were still in single digits.

If no one has a majority, the winner will be the candidate who can rack up the most 2nd choice votes.

With the top ten candidates getting over 95 percent of the vote, if  Lee is in the No. 2 spot of candidates standing 6th through 10, currently Dufty, Hall, Alioto Pier, and Rees, it could be enough to give him the majority he needs for victory.

Next tally results set for 10:30 p.m.

Official results:

http://sfelections.org/results/20111108/

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