|Oakland District 4 City Council candidates Jill Broadhurst and Anne Campbell Washington.|
OAKLAND | CITY COUNCIL | DISTRICT 4 | Jill Broadhurst’s campaign was accused of questionable tactics contained in a mailer sent recently to Oakland District 4 voters. Meanwhile, labor unions poured thousands in support of Broadhurst’s opponent, Anne Campbell Washington, and another progressive candidate in the council’s District 2. Each move suggests the campaigns may see the race to replace Councilmember Libby Schaaf on the City Council next month is likely to be a hard-fought affair.
Broadhurst received a warning letter from the Sierra Club last week telling her to stop using the environmental group’s logo on one of her campaign mailers. The group did not endorse Broadhurst for his seat leading to the complaint, according to the East Bay Express. However, Broadhurst said she is a member and the mailer merely communicates this fact..
The logo on the Broadhurst mailer is clearly labelled as not an endorsement, but is placed next to the insignia for the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber Commerce political action committee, which did back Broadhurst’s campaign last month. Critics charge Broadhurst is attempting to deceive voters.
With just weeks to go before the General Election, campaign’s are hustling for every last vote before Nov. 4. Labor, this week, may have showed its cards, at least, when it comes to putting its money where its mouth is. The Alameda Labor Council, a mix of local unions that wield significant electoral power, paid for over $25,000 worth of campaign advertisements in support Washington and District 2 candidate Abel Guillen. according to campaign finance reports.
While both Washington and Guillen are progressives endorsed by the Alameda County Democratic Party, the outlay may suggest the unions are, at least, concerned about their chances. One known source for the concern follows two polls in September showing each was trailing their more moderate council opponents. Guillen is in a five-person race in District 4. Polls show political newcomer Dana King, a former local news anchorwoman, leading the race. The same polls also show Broadhurst with an electoral lead.
In order to request an endorsement from the Sierra Club, Broadhurst completed an application from the Sierra Club and in that application, she agreed not to use the Sierra Club logo on campaign literature unless she received their endorsement. Contrary to that agreement, Broadhurst used the Sierra Club logo next to her statement that she was a proud member of the Sierra Club. And, she placed both of them right next to a logo of the Oakland Chamber of Commerce (OakPac) and a statement that it had endorsed her. In my opinion, those two facts show an intention to mislead the public. Some of Broadhurst's supporters think this matter is silly – see Friday Montclarion Letter to the Editor. The Sierra Club does not think this matter is silly and that is why they issued Broadhurst a cease and desist letter.