ELECTIONLINE: Khanna still backs Yang Shao; Bill Quirk moves; Pete Stark remembers Ron Dellums

While Rep. Ro Khanna revels on the national scene as a progressive flag bearer, the situation at home in his Fremont congressional district is quite different. Khanna’s curious endorsement of Fremont City Council candidate Yang Shao continues to fuel discontent among members of the LGBT community and progressives in that city. Khanna is double-downing on the endorsement and says he will not withdraw his backing. Last week, some Fremont voters received door-hangers from Shao’s campaign that feature the candidate, along with Khanna, and Fremont Mayor Lily Mei. Shao, a member of the Fremont school board, is part of a growing Chinese evangelical movement in the South Bay called the River of Life. Shao previously supported Proposition 8, the 2008 state initiative to ban same-sex marriage. A New York Times piece from 2010 is getting much play from Shao’s opponents. In it Shao is quoted as supporting the beliefs of the River of Life’s leader, William Tam, who asserted gay marriage will lead to the legalization of prostitution and pedophilia. The spotlight returned to Shao’s uneasy relationship with the LGBT community earlier this spring when he voted against continuing sex education curriculum for fourth to sixth grade Fremont students. The new curriculum included additional references to LGBT family dynamics. Khanna, incidentally, publicly criticized the Fremont school board for their vote to suspend the sex ed program.

One of the most curious items from the release of semi-annual campaign finance reports this week is the $181,005 personal loan Oakland mayoral candidate Saied Karamooz made to his campaign. On its face, his robust war chest should make him a player in November. But the large contribution is the only one he reported through the six-month reporting period. In addition, Karamooz, a member of the Oakland Public Ethics Commission, ran for mayor four years ago and with scant success–winning just 264 first place votes. But it remains to be seen what Karamooz does with all the cash in his campaign. Because despite his low level of support in 2014, his rhetoric was sharp, witty, and colored with a critique that Oakland has been taken over by special interests money. He routinely labeled the three incumbents in the 2014 race–Libby Schaaf, Jean Quan, and Rebecca Kaplan–as”coin-operated politicians” and “remote-controlled by big donors.” It’s not hard to imagine a three-headed punching machine of Karamooz, community organizer Cat Brooks, and civil rights attorney Pamela Price, giving Mayor Schaaf fits throughout the fall.

Assemblymember Rob Bonta has been rolling out a number of local endorsements in recent weeks and it’s not hard to see a trend forming. Notably, many are women of color. Last week, Bonta endorsed Oakland City Council District 4 candidates Sheng Thao and Pam Harris; Oakland District 2 school board member Aimee Eng; and Peralta Community College Trustee Julina Bonilla. Perhaps more controversially, Bonta previously endorsed Oakland Councilmember Desley Brooks. But there’s word that female candidates in other cities may also received Bonta’s backing. Meanwhile, last June, he also endorsed Irella Blackwood, an African American candidate for Alameda County auditor, in addition, to backing Kimberly Ellis for California Democratic Party chair.

20TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT Hayward area voters sent Bill Quirk to the assembly in 2012 along with the first class of legislators to benefit from potentially 12 years in office. Two years prior, California voters approved an increase in term limits in the legislature from 8 years to 12 years. In the years since, Quirk has faced token opposition at the ballot box and settled in as the assembly’s expert scientist. But questions about whether will choose to serve through 2024 or retire sometime before, have increased in recent months. Further increasing speculation is the fact Quirk recently sold his home in Hayward and moved to a senior community development in Union City (still in 20th Assembly District). Tomasa Duenas, Quirk’s chief of staff said he and his wife are merely downsizing. There are other factors, including Quirk’s age (he will be 72 this September) fueling doubt, including the exhausting daily grind of driving from south county to Sacramento four days a week when the assembly is in session, and within the last few years he became a grandfather. Meanwhile, there is parlor talk about who might replace Quirk one day? The pickings are slim in a district dominated by Hayward and Fremont.

Stark Dellums

A tip of the hat from one East Bay political legend to another. Former Rep. Pete Stark remembered his colleague, Ron Dellums, who died last Monday. “I was saddened to learn of the passing of my friend, Congressman Ron Dellums. He welcomed me, providing space in his office before mine was assigned when I was first elected to Congress in 1972. We served together for twenty-five years. Ron was a great leader who worked tirelessly for peace and justice. I send my thoughts and condolences to the Dellums family.” There’s a clear link between the elections of Stark and Dellums. Both parlayed the rising anti-war sentiment in the Bay Area against a Democratic establishment that was still supportive of the conflict.

10 thoughts on “ELECTIONLINE: Khanna still backs Yang Shao; Bill Quirk moves; Pete Stark remembers Ron Dellums

  1. Ron,

    Once again you are not listening well. I was not commenting on the Supreme Court action on Japanese Internment. I was asking Vito if his family was locked up during WW2. You chose to once again spin the comments.

    WW2 was not a war fought to keep the world safe from fascism. It was a war fought to gain more riches for Multi National Companies, many of which were then in the United States. The war was fought for the same reasons all wars are fought, so the rich can gain more and the young can die believing the spin.

    Nothing noble in war. The good part of WW2 was that the Depression for Americans was ended by the massive spending for war. Yes, good old FDR really was the pawn for Big Business, as were most of the elites in Washington at the time.

    Make America Great Again? What time was that that you wanted to espouse? Perhaps you want to believe in America was great when?

    I did not say that America is not great. I have lived in Germany, Japan, Viet Nam, the Philipines, England, Ireland and Sweden. America is much better.

    What I am sure of is that ignorance is bliss for the Trolls and Alt Right Fascists that are destroying our nation.

    Democracy is about compromise, not Single Issues.

    We Make America Great through Tolerance and Compromise.


  2. Again, you are confused, Theomordha and Vito.

    Vito: MAGA, back at you, my friend.

    Nothing I wrote or ever said remotely encourages people to “know their place.” Their place is to pursue happiness, productivity, success and ultimately, independence. Mr. Dellums promoted dependency and a “victim hood” mentality. He was un-American. He embraced Socialism. That is unforgivable, even in death. Socialism is the sum-total of every bad political theory on earth. It is Communism at its stating point.
    Separately, I stated I agreed with much of his anti-war views.

    theomordha: You lack an understanding of history. The Republicans on the Supreme Court all voted AGAINST internment. It was Franklin Roosevelt (D), and the (D)s he appointed to the Court that put those groups, and Congressman Mike Honda, as a child, in camps. Everyone forgets that, and attributes the camps to conservatives.

    I will note…most everyone survived living in those camps. Few were even injured. Not so in similar camps Japan, Russia and Germany that were intentional death/slave camps. Ours were bad…but no so bad. We stole peoples’ land. No excuse for that.

    Further, WWII was nothing like this time period. There was serious doubt about the survival of our society. I actually give FDR some slack for his bad decision. Interning the Japanese was not only bad…worse, it was completely counter-productive and provided no additional security. Many Germans and Italians WERE spies. Many were loyal Americans. They got a bad deal. No one wins, in war. Think deeply. Who started WWII? Not us. Socialist did, who morphed into Fascist. All the same crap. As Churchill said: “When will the lesson be learned?”

    I can’t imagine how I’m bringing an “alternative to democracy to the East Bay.” I am participating in a democratic election, following all the rules, likely to be voted down. I support Mr. Trump, whom you may dislike, but who has done nothing to abuse democracy. He won Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, fair and square, and therefore, the election. Who is it that is in conflict with democracy. No us!

    The “Russia collusion” story, is, again, a cover story to make it feasible, and believable, that the impossible happened… that Secretary Clinton got beaten, because, even her friend will say…she is/was the worst political candidate, like, ever. She can barely give a cogent speech. Yet, she got beat by a guy who was never previously elected to ANYTHING. Embarrassing for the (D)s, ain’t it? Good, for true Democracy.

    But it was not “her”…no, it was the “Russians.” That’s a Low I.Q. tactic. …it works with many (D)s.


  3. Vito, remember that the good old days were not so great. The United States locked up the Germans, the Italians and the Japanese. Were your family members locked up? Were any of your family deported?


  4. Ron Cohen, I support you 100 percent! I yearn for the good old days, when certain people knew their place; and respected “old glory”. you can make American Great Once Again!


  5. You are a bit confused.

    We have sanctions on Russia. The strongest EVER, since the appropriation of the Crimea.

    China has an evil form of government. If you protest too much, you are taken away, your kidney and liver are harvested, and you are left dead, on an operating table, and the rest that can’t be sold, is fed to the pigs. I don’t know what “sanctions” you require to substantiate my disagreement with that form of government. It is Socialism, at its core, because they harvest organs for the “Common good.”

    The E.U. has some socialist policies, but is largely a democratic, capitalist society…so, again, I don’t understand what you are suggesting is necessary. Western Europe is not Dellums style Socialism. They would laugh at him.

    The U.K., again with some socialist policies, is closest to the U.S. in economic policy. So I don’t understand your point. The UK is not Dellums style, Socialism. They would laugh at him.

    You missed my point. Again, “Forms of Socialism got 100 million people killed in the 20th Century. No matter. Dellums liked it.”

    I remember as a young guy, we used to chuckle at those like Dellums. Loose wing-nuts from Oakland. We were safe in the knowledge that no serious politician, even most Democrats, would ever, ever take-up their extreme babbling, certainly not a presidential candidate, nor did Carter or Bill Clinton. Obama was closer…and acted with stealth. Obama was a Socialist, but knew he had to act as if he wasn’t, and sneak- in a few Socialist agenda items when he could….so, we mostly laughed about those in Oakland and Berkeley. And saw it for what it was. The Black Community should have people in Congress to represent them. Sadly, rather than a patriot, Oakland and Berkeley elected Dellums, a loon. But it was OK. He was in a small political silo.

    NOW, to our horror, that silo has broken out, where a good bit of the Bernie Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez crowd actually take these loons seriously, building on Dellums’ failed views.

    They are un-American. Mostly, they are hypocrites. They do little good and much harm. They are role-models for dependency and collectivism.

    They take a society that has lifted more people into the middle-class, than any other society in the history of the world, and rebuke its core concepts. Shame.

    As for Russia, Mueller issue: Careful! Your “Trump Derangement Syndrome” is showing.

    You do realize, that Putin is laughing his ass off? The (D)s are doing his work to cause conflict in the U.S. and to distract Trump for pursuing his agenda…which is exactly what Putin always wanted. You do realize that, don’t you?

    The investigation is a waste of money and is grasping at straws. They best thing your side has is that young Donald Trump Junior, mistakenly, met with a Russian attorney, who was really working for Fusion One, funded by the Clinton campaign. Indeed, Donald Trump, Jr. should have just called the F.B.I., but he was inexperienced in these matters. So, then, what came of it? Let’s assume DT Jr. wanted to collaborate with Russia. What came of it? Nothing! The meeting was 10 minutes and DT Jr. walked-out, realizing it was an attempt by the lawyer to get the Magnitsky Act, repealed. Likely, you don’t even know what that is.

    See, you folks have lost your minds. Rep. Eric Swallwel, can’t tell the difference between a error in judgement, and a full-blown collaboration…so, they are blowing it up, out of all proportion trying to appeal to low-I.Q. voters. The reason is simple.

    After almost 2 years, and 20 million dollars, and endless lies…the (D)s know they have NOTHING, and are trying to keep Hillary out of jail. Now, they are just trying to make sure the Mueller Report (if it ever comes out) is not a complete clown show, highlighting that the whole thing was a (D) party set-up to try to over turn the 2016 Election.

    It is looking very clear, Mueller has nothing. Moderate (D)s are walking away from this mess, as they should. Leaving the loons, many in California, to deal with their ultimate embarrassment, when the report comes out with no actionable conclusions.

    The founding fathers KNEW presidents would be failed human beings. So, they realized, for the good of the country, they needed to get 4 years and be left alone, for the good of the country. Lacking ANYTHING that is remotely a “High Crime or Misdemeanor,” the (D) are acting against the very wishes of the framers of our Constitution.

    We get it. You don’t like Trump. We get it. Vote against him in two year.

    Let’s move on.


  6. Ron,

    Good to see you are supporting ending the world of Socialism and Communism. So are you now in support of sanctions on Russia, China, the EU, and the UK?

    How about indictment of the folks conspiring with Russia?


  7. Have a look at the Wikipedia for Congressman Ron Dellums:


    “Though he ran as a Democrat, and caucused as a Democrat in Congress, Dellums described himself as a Socialist. He was the first self-described socialist in Congress since Victor L. Berger. In the 1970s, Dellums was a member of the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee (DSOC), an offshoot of the Socialist Party of America. He later became vice-chair of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA),[10] which was formed by a merger between the DSOC and the New American Movement, and which works within and outside the Democratic Party.”

    While many of his anti-war positions were honorable, Mr. Dellums hurt the people of this country and the Black Community, pushing a rancid, proven-wrong, socialist ideology. For that, there is no redemption. Rep. Barbara Lee is the same.

    His personal character was further proven by him bouncing of over 850 checks on the Congressional bank, and, the fact he had significant unpaid federal income taxes WHILE the Mayor of Oakland. So much for being a role model.

    No one supports Apartheid. But South Africa, one of Mr. Dellums’ causes, now, is on the verge of becoming a failed state…because of socialism. Some better arrangement should have been worked-out.

    He pushed the “victim hood” ideology, we see so much of with progressives. While Democrats, since before the Civil War, abused the Black community — and I believe still do today (Chicago, Baltimore, parts of Washington, D.C.)– Dellums embraced the (D) party…because (R)s believe in capitalism and self-reliance, and that does not fly with a majority of Oakland or Berkeley.

    Every generation, has a group who think there is a human Utopia. They discover Socialism, just like a teenager discovers sex. Most of us mature and view government and sex in a useful and productive manner. Not the Socialist…they grasp onto their Utopian views of the world, in the face of clear evidence, it never, in the long-term, works. Such is Congressman Dellums. What a waste. He had many opportunities to do real good.

    Forms of Socialism got 100 million people killed in the 20th Century. No matter. Dellums liked it.


  8. why is it relevant that Bonta is receiving several endorsements from women of color? What does race have to do with it?


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