Supporters Of Mayor Bob Filner Rally For Due Process
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Aired 8/20/13 on KPBS News.
Dozens of supporters of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner staged a rally outside City Hall while the mayor was several blocks away in a closed meeting at the U.S. Attorney's office.
Dozens of supporters of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner staged a rally on Monday outside City Hall while the mayor was several blocks away in a closed meeting at the U.S. Attorney's office.
They walked across the Civic Center Plaza singing "We Shall Overcome" as they held homemade signs that read "We forgive," and "It's wrong to deny civil rights."
Special Feature Read the Backstory
All of the accusations, statements and apologies from the key players in the developing story about allegations of sexual harassment in Mayor Bob Filner's office and calls from former mayoral supporters for his resignation.
The event was spearheaded by immigrant rights activist Enrique Morones and a handful of civil rights-based organizations that urged due process for the mayor.
"These joint community members of color, veterans, environmentalists, educators, women's rights, gays, civil rights, labor, human rights, unions, neighborhoods, immigration and many more -- we stand united in stopping the public mockery of our judicial system,'' Morones said.
David Gapp, an Air Force veteran said voters who elected Filner to office are entitled to hear both sides of the story.
"I fought for the constitution for 31 years," Gapp said. "I believe Mayor Filner has his right to justice as well.”
Ellen Nash said she supports the mayor because of his support of neighborhoods.
"I’m a District 4 resident, lifetime resident, been here all my life," Nash said, "and I’ve never seen a mayor like him come into office and commit to promises to rebuild our neighborhood, and I’ve already seen examples of it.“
Paul Carter said Filner is just a friendly, old-time politician.
"Maybe he went too far, and he went to treatment for that," Carter said. "But this is really about the developers losing control here."
Organizers of the Recall Bob Filner campaign continued their efforts at the edges of the pro-Filner rally. They need 102,000 valid signatures by Sept. 26 to get the recall bid on the ballot.
"I was out yesterday at a few events and everyone wanted to sign this petition," said Rachel Laing, communications director for the Recall Bob Filner campaign. "I didn’t have to tell them, I just had my T-shirt on and they said 'Where can I sign? I want this man out of office.'”