Tag Archives: midterm elections

Update: SF’s David Chiu beats David Campos in Assembly District 17; Midterm mugging: For first time in 8 years, GOP in charge. Nancy Pelosi still minority leader, but Mike Honda still in Congress.

UPDATED: In the hotly contested San Francisco Assembly District 17 race, David Chiu has issued this statement on Facebook that his opponent, David Campos, has conceded.

Close race between two colleagues that got nasty. But that’s politics.

 

Nov.5: People hate Congress, but they like their guy. How else do you describe the way Democratic Incumbent Mike Honda in CA-17 was able to beat back Ro Khanna, the disruptive Democrat who failed despite big money and endorsements.

Goes to show you, avuncular beats upstart. In politics, style counts for something.

But Honda’s victory is not enough to make Nancy Pelosi happy. She’s still in the minority, but even deeper in the hole now.

It rained at the Giants parade, and on Tuesday it poured. Two more years of political smiles.

Last week she had the Senate, now all she has is a lame duck president to lean on.

And an orange rally rag to remind her what it feels like to be a World Champion.

 

 

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Midterm Elections are Democracy’s Game 7. You better #vote. I already did. Once is enough. Don’t forget. It’s the only real power you have. Don’t waste it. #Vote.

I was at the #SFGiants parade last week and saw the massive throngs of fans there. I rode on the bus with the Panda, San Francisco’s baseball idol. But what if baseball were politics? What politician would command this today?  Anybody? Or is the faith in our democracy so low, they’d be lucky to get a tenth of this kind of adulation.

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Seeing all those people made me wonder  how many of then might actually do something in the not so distant future that’s really important– like vote in the Midterm elections.

Most people forget,  or don’t bother.  Even when they’re registered.  And the rain? Biggest vote suppressor since Jim Crow.

I started thinking this when I saw  Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi at the parade. It was raining on her.

And I caught her in a moment where the exuberance of the parade had paused for a second.

And I wondered if she were thinking how when all this was over, she would have to inevitably think about Tuesday.  Or maybe she was thinking about Tuesday for a brief unguarded second.

I’ve actually talked to Nancy many times in the past. So I went up to her car by her security folks and was able to talk briefly with her.  When I asked her about the election on Tuesday she had a terse response. “We’ll see. We’re working hard on that,” she said.  And then the security guy brushed me away.

Pelosi  wasn’t sounding much like a former speaker about to regain power once the Democrats take over the House. May not be in the plans. Already, I’m hearing from insiders about the Senate. They say if the Democrats lose there, it may be a relief because then the Dems can blame the Republicans wholeheartedly.

That’s some consolation for the Dems. From half-blame to no-blame.

Like I said, wherever you are, whoever you vote for, do vote on Tuesday, Nov. 4.

Sports fans, it’s Democracy’s Game 7.

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An American fairy tale for a struggling country: San Francisco Giants, 2010 World Series Champs

 As a long-suffering fan and San Francisco native, I tried to replicate the team’s joy when the Giants won it all.  I jumped on the person next to me (fortunately, my wife) and then poured champagne (a bottle from BevMo’s .05 sale) on my head.  Wet? No worries. I had that thick orange towel they handed out at World Series Game 1 to soak it all up.

What a season. What a championship. 56 years it took? That’s just about my entire life.

So I’m still in a Giants semi-stupor, though it’s wearing off fast as I turn on the news and get a taste of reality.

Mid-terms, the stuff that counts, the direction of this country.  It’s all bad.

It’s the reason we need the Giants.

I voted last week so I didn’t have to think about real life too much today. I didn’t want a mid-term implosion to get in the way of my Giants’ euphoria.

I know I can’t stay in my Orange haze for too long, but the Giants’ story is just what this country needs. It’s a story of optimism, hope and belief. It’s a story of what happens when we all hope for the same thing and pull together.  In many ways, it’s a perfect fairy tale for a country struggling to stay afloat, socially, economically.

The Giants’ weren’t exactly royalty at the beginning of the year. They had some great young arms, but no supporting staff. No pop, no power. This team wasn’t suppose to play in October, nevermind November.

But there they were, a team put together with a recession budget. GM Brian Sabean was like a guy at the pick and pull, looking for parts to build a champion racer. He had a list and a credit card limit. He had already overpaid badly for Zito and Rowand in previous years. And even Renteria got too much.  So the Giants didn’t have the dough to build a Yankee-like coupe.  Instead, they put together a team that could race to the last day of the regular season and to Game 5 of the Series.  Castoffs? They were all grinders. Every piece was necessary and had a moment to shine at some point in the season.

But no real stars. Why that’s no good for baseball, as one commentator suggested.

The Giants and baseball may have a hard time competing with the violence of football. But they are reflective of a recession-age champion. It’s excellence built-on a budget. A team of hope. A team that the chardonnay sippers could love, along side the blue-collar bleacher bums. I sat with both during the playoffs. 

 First off, there is no team that has as diverse a fan base as the Giants. You look at the crowd and it’s not all of one type.  That’s how you know it’s San Francisco. I sat next to a young Latino teamster from the Mission, a Caucasian  female business owner from Potrero Hill married to an Asian, a white professional couple from the Peninsula.  A Korean immigrant and his born-here son from the East Bay. What kind of entertainment/team attracts that kind of mixed demos?

And after every victory, I must have hi-fived several hundred strangers after every home-run, run scored, or ultimate victory. No Purelle necessary. We were Giants family.

That kind of teamwork on the field, a sense of unity, is what was special about this team and their ballpark. Over 43,000 a night coming together over a victorious championship run is not as trivial as it seems on first blush. 

I admit I felt the same way in the  AT&T  stands as I did when I stood in 15 degree temperatures two years ago in the Washington Mall for the Obama Inaugural. There was a real sense of unity and hopefulness that I  hadn’t seen or felt  in a long time. There was no divisiveness, just talk of working together, of a brand new kind of politics. There were cheers, parades, speeches.

It wasn’t a game nor entertainment. It was for real. Where did it go? 

That’s why I want to hold on to my Giants’ feeling as long as I can. Because after today, I know the real world is not going to feel so great.