Independent Expenditure Committee Swoops In With Bundles Of Cash To Defeat Young

May 28, 2012 | Voters in Oakland and its neighbors in the 18th Assembly District has been inundated in recent weeks with uncommonly negative campaign mailers against candidate Joel Young, but who is paying for these pieces and who may they be secretly attempting to help another candidate in the final throes of the June primary?

California Alliance, a state independent expenditure committee, that further describes itself as “a coalition of consumer attorneys and conservationists” is behind the successive mailers aiming to tell voters of Young’s recent bad behavior. With the gavel of justice slamming down, as depicted in one potent mailer, it simply reads, “Joel Young. Two restraining orders. In just the last year.”

Little is known about the group, which lists its mailing address in Southern California, but it is clear they believe a large outpouring of unrelegated cash will make a huge difference in the 18th Assembly District. California Alliance’s expenditures in opposition to Young, currently (as of May 25) at $72, 663, is the seventh largest outlay of outside money against any candidate by one group in the entire state this primary season. These committees cannot coordinate with candidates, but, they invariably share a common interest and political goal.

Although, it cannot be proved for certain, most local political observers believe the barrage of negative mailers against Young is intended to support his opponent, Abel Guillen. In tandem, there is a growing sense of inevitability over Rob Bonta’s ability to finish first in next week’s June, leaving the race for second between Young and Guillen. By many indications, primarily the lack of tough campaigning rhetoric by Young and Guillen against Bonta, gives clues to the current pecking order going into next week’s primary.

Independent Expenditure Committee tend to seek the biggest bang for the bucks and mostly pour money into races where they believe they can tip the balances to their preferred candidate. Despite ample reasons for voters to bypass Young, he still is perceived to maintain an advantage among Oaklanders, in general, and more specifically, black voters.

When it comes to whom the group supports, it is clearly Guillen. But for more proof, just look at which labor union has given money to California Alliance in the past. When it comes to playing hardball politics, nobody in this state beats the California Nurses Association. The labor union has supported the committee in the past and endorsed Guillen last year in this race. It also contributed $7,800 to Guillen’s campaign–the legal limit for this primary season.

The vociferousness of outside groups hoping to defeat Young is not surprising. One consultant based in Sacramento said news of Young being stripped of the SEIU’s all-important endorsement last Februrary raised many eyebrows among labor leaders in the capitol and indicated doubt that he could be trusted. In fact, the allegations of domestic violence last year against Young paled in comparison, they said, to the grave misstep of betraying his union brothers and sisters. Presently, the fruits of that betrayal is manifesting in your mailbox.

7 thoughts on “Independent Expenditure Committee Swoops In With Bundles Of Cash To Defeat Young

  1. Hmmm another IE has jumped into the race and its for Bonta! That bolsters the above theory, Bonta may not have the lead that is expected. Or Guillen could be moving ahead. And its time to ensure Rob makes the runoff


  2. There's an assumption people are making that California Alliance is doing this for Guillen but if you look at their funders alot of them also give to Bonta. One example is the consumer attorneys. Could there be a scenario where a poll found the 3 contenders within percentage points of one another? These polls usually have a +/- of 4 percentage points. Perhaps this Alliance is just ensuring that Bonta is assured of making the runoff by attacking the weakest candidate?


  3. I've seen the guy in action. Aloof or like a robo-politician. Do you research, 18th District.


  4. I just threw away the fourth and fifth negative mailer I have received this week–all from California Alliance. It's pathetic and disgusting. I was undecided between Guillen and Young, but this slimy campaigning is tipping the scales in Young's favor. I won't support a candidate who allows a so-called “independent expenditure committee” to spread this scum around. If Guillen had any class, he'd publicly disavow these ads, show how misleading they are, and praise Young's integrity. The silence is telling.


  5. Right! He was done the minute he screwed with SEIU. It proves Joel will do anything just to get elected. Imagine, what he would do to keep that power?


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