Okay, so I checked out Scott Svonkin, the first-place finisher in the battle for Community College Board, Trustee Number Five, in the last post. Claims to be big on fiscal oversight, evidence to the contrary; a number of witnesses have stepped forward to say he's a douchebag. Got it.
Time for some attention to be paid to the second-place finisher, Lydia Gutierrez.
Long history working in education, L.A. roots go back generations, yadda yadda. Very nice. And a buttload of endorsements. My God, this woman has more endorsements than Scott Svonkin. First on her list? Sharon Nolan of the Abalone Cove Landslide Abatement District. I don't believe it. She's playing the Abalone Cove Landslide Abatement District card right up front. This Gutierrez woman is not fucking around.
She's also got a bunch of officials from San Gabriel. This is not an accident. San Gabriel is Svonkin's stomping ground, where the majority of voters has grown to detest him.
Ah, the ugly business of politics.
But there's something else curious about her list of endorsers. At first I thought it was the lack of big names, but that's not really the issue.
No one has any party affiliation. No "Democrat" or "Republican" or any of their variations appear on her list. Not once. Nor does she mention any party affiliation in her bio. Strange.
What is she? A Whig?
A little Internet sleuthing turned up the truth: She's a Republican. Now, since the Community College Board of Trustees is a non-partisan group, there's no requirement to state party affiliation. Her exclusion of that information is understandable in a liberal place like L.A. I mean, we do elect some Republicans, but not often.
And Republicans are supposed to be big on fiscal responsibility, if I still believe that. And she's largely self-financed her campaign, so she's not beholden to many backers.
This is making sense. I rather like this woman.
Oh, wait. There is one more thing.
She hates homosexuals.
She was a proponent of Proposition 8. That's the one that excluded gay people from an equal chance at the misery of marriage that straight people take for granted.
She also said that the California Teachers' Association's endorsement of a state bill proposing a Harvey Milk Day is "offensive to the families of her students." (To add context, in that very complaint, she did cite that Cesar Chavez has done more for California's working class than Harvey Milk, but failed to mention that we already have a Cesar Chavez Day -- as well as whether or not the CTA endorsed the bill that created it in 2000.)
And last year, the CTA supported a bill that would allow minors to seek mental health assistance without parental consent. The crux of this bill was to help prevent suicides by tormented LGBT teens. (Governor Schwarzenegger mercifully signed it into law.) But guess which family values teacher didn't want to make it easier for suicidally depressed teens to get help?
More research revealed that one of her endorsers, a fellow named Ben Lopez, is a high muckety-muck in the California Republican Assembly. This far-right bunch advocates far more than just lower taxes and free enterprise. Terms like "Creator" and "Judeo-Christian Foundation" and "Holy Scriptures" are right up at the top of their page. After seeing that, I wasn't surprised to read that they believe in the traditional American family, the one-man-one-woman marriage kind. (No word on whether or not they plan to outlaw divorce or take away a woman's right to vote.)
I also wasn't surprised that she doesn't list Ben Lopez as a member of this group, but rather as merely a "Community Activist."
This woman who traveled to Colombia off and on for years to help orphans -- all on her own dime -- discriminates against gay people.
So those are our choices. An attitude case who's so in bed with big labor that it doesn't appear that he'll to anything to curb spending versus a goddamn bigot.
Oh, the ugly business of politics.