CADEM NOTEBOOK: Obama slights Mike Honda; won’t endorse in CA17

CADEM16 | CA17 | President Obama is quietly distancing himself from Rep. Mike Honda, or at least, deciding to not take sides in the incumbent’s rematch against  fellow Dem Ro Khanna.

Politico reported Thursday that Obama is not renewing his endorsement of Honda. No reason was given for the president staying neutral in the Dem-on-Dem primary clash likely to be reprised in the fall.

In the 2014 congressional race, Honda immediately trumpeted Obama’s endorsement against Khanna and his growing campaign war chest. In fact, Honda made the announcement a full 16 months before the June 2014 primary.

The tenor of the endorsement so early in the campaign struck some as desperation and a clue Honda’s campaign feared the threat by Khanna, a former Obama appointee to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Honda defeated Khanna by just under four points in November 2014.

This time around, Honda will be on his own and feeling may becoming too familiar in recent months. The loss of Obama’s support matches a distinct narrative seen at the grassroots level in and around Silicon Valley. Numerous local Democratic clubs once viewed as Honda strongholds have issued a round of no endorsements in recently.

A similar sense of uncertainty over Honda and his pending House ethics investigation led to his inability to register enough support by Alameda County Democrats to win the party’s backing at the pre-endorsement meeting on Jan. 30. Now, Honda is forced to wrap up the endorsement at this week’s convention.

CA17 | Honda poised for winning state endorsement Saturday
Rep. Mike Honda fell just two votes shy of gaining the 70 percent of voters needed to win the party’s endorsement last month. Now, he has to continue the fight at this weekend’s convention.

“We’re very optimistic,” said Vedant Patel, political director for the Honda campaign. “The numbers are in our favor.”

The state party has always endorsed Honda and this year will be no different, he added, despite a clear narrative put out by the Khanna campaign that the grassroots are pulling away from the incumbent Honda.

However, don’t expect much drama from Saturday’s vote. As opposed to the pre-endorsement round, Honda, as an incumbent, needs only 50 percent of the vote. Khanna, meanwhile, needs 60 percent.

Honda and Khanna will address delegates on Saturday during an endorsement vote scheduled to begin at 5:45 p.m. Watch the livestream of the meeting here at and on the @eastbaycitizen Twitter feed.

Categories: CA17, CADEM16, Democratic Convention, endorsement, Mike Honda, President Obama, Ro Khanna

1 reply

  1. By MW:

    For a few years now Honda has been acting in ways that would lead any reasonable person to strongly suspect that he suffers from a serious case of senility, and just as Pete Stark almost certainly did during his last years in Congress. In other words, Honda is becoming an embarrassment to his allies, and if he stays in Congress, and rather than retiring, he will most likely in the next few years become an even much bigger embarrassment to them.

    So most likely Obama and the rest of the big boys in the DP, and including Feinstein and Pelosi, etc, have decided it is time for Honda to go.

    Of course, and while Pelosi herself for at least a few years has been showing signs of senility, and such as for instance her comment, “You can read it after we pass it,” however: one, she is too big, too powerful, and too extremely connected to be easily pushed aside and shoved out the door; and two, even in spite of her extreme mental shortcomings, she is still extremely effective at organizing and lining up the votes. In fact when it comes to organizing, lining up the votes, and keeping the troops in line, she is an idiot savant, and therefore still of great value to the DP.

    And as whether Feinstein, and who is her eighties, and also still extremely connected, is now senile, that is hard to tell, since for many years she has regularly been making statements and taking positions that no one with an IQ higher than his or her shoe size could have taken.

    For instance for years Feinstein “knew” that Duane Garrett, and who was one of the very sleaziest lawyers in SF history, was a wonderful and totally trustworthy person. (To learn more about the “standards” of SF politics and legal profession, do an Internet search on Garrett.)

    And Feinstein also “implicitly trusted” Kinde Durkee, and who was probably an even bigger embezzler, money launderer, and scam artist than Garrett.

    And Feinstein absolutely and definitely “knew” that Bill Clinton had not had an improper relationship with Monica Lewinsky, since Clinton had told her he had not.

    And when the nomination of organized crime kingpin M.L. “Larry The Liar” – Arlington” Lawrence was being considered by the US Senate for confirmation to be the US Ambassador to Switzerland, Feinstein was the main person in the entire Senate going around assuring everybody else that Lawrence was a wonderful and totally trustworthy person.

    In fact, Feinstein is Exhibit A of the fact that someone can graduate from one of the very “best” universities, and such as for instance Stanford, and yet be no more than a “sophisticated,” fancy talking, and “highly educated” extreme mental retard.


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