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Democrats Split in City Attorney's Race

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San Diego’s democratic faithful are divided over the city attorney’s race. Republican Jan Goldsmith, who’s challenging Mike Aguirre for the city attorney’s job, has won the endorsement of several

Democrats Split in City Attorney's Race

(Photo: Jan Goldsmith with former  democratic state legislator Dede Alpert. Alison St John/KPBS )

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San Diego’s democratic faithful are divided over the city attorney’s race. Republican Jan Goldsmith, who’s challenging Mike Aguirre for the city attorney’s job, has won the endorsement of several prominent state democrats. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

The city attorney’s race is officially non partisan, but Goldsmith knows it will be important to have support from democrats as well as republicans in November.

There are 50 thousand more registered democrats than republicans in the city of San Diego, and democrats are predicted to turn out in force for the presidential race.

Long-time state legislator, Dede Alpert, is the latest democrat to throw her weight behind Goldsmith. She served with him in the California Assembly in the 1990s.  

Alpert:  I wouldn’t vote for Jan Goldsmith for Assembly because he wouldn’t vote the way I would think on a large number of issues, but in this non partisan office where he is the city’s chief lawyer, I feel like he is the best candidate.

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Former state legislators Lucie Killea and Waddie Dedeh also endorsed Goldsmith this week. Deddeh says the constant conflict between the city attorney’s office and other branches of city government does not help cooperation at city hall.

But Jess Durfee, Chair of San Diego’s Democratic Party, says the Party endorses Aguirre precisely because he will challenge the "powers-that -be" at city hall.

Durfee: While there might be some of the more traditional democrats who aren’t supporting him, I think mike has an appeal to that huge number of independent voters out there who are looking at someone who will be there to scrutinize Jerry Sanders as well as the business community.

On his side of the state legislative ledger, Aguirre’s site lists endorsements from recently deceased democrat, Lionel Van Deerlin, and current California Senator Denise Ducheny.

On the predominantly democratic San Diego city council, 2 of the 5 democratic council members are looking for a change … Ben Hueso and Scott Peters back Jan Goldsmith. The others have not yet revealed their hands.

Alison St John, KPBS News.

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