US Sen. Feinstein, Gubernatorial Candidates Fail To Get Endorsement Of California Democrats
>>> IT IS MONDAY, FEBRUARY 26. OUR TOP STORY I MIDDAY EDITION. CALIFORNIA DEMOCRATS WRAPPED UP THEIR CONVENTION IN SAN DIEGO OVER THE WEEKEND WITH SOME UNHAPPY SURPRISES FOR FRONT RUNNERS. DIANNE FEINSTEIN DID NOT SECURE THE PARTY'S ENDORSEMENT FOR SENATE AND ANTONIO VERA GO SO IN THE GOVERNOR'S RACE AND THE ATTY. GENERAL.'S RACE DID NOT FIND THE EXPECTED SUPPORT AMONG DELEGATES. AS I MENTIONED, THE MAIN NEWS OUT OF THE CONVENTION SEEMS TO BE THE RACES THAT DID NOT GET ENDORSEMENTS. WERE DELEGATES UNUSUALLY SPLIT THIS YEAR? >> I THINK WHAT YOU HAD, THIS IS THE PARTY FAITHFUL. THE ACTIVIST, THE GRASSROOTS GROUPS, USUALLY MORE LIBERAL, MORE PROGRESSIVE THAN THE DEMOCRATIC ELECTORATE AS A WHOLE IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. SO YOU SAW THAT REFLECTED IN THE RESULTS OF THESE RACES. BUT YOU HAD PEOPLE WHO ARE AMONG THE MORE LIBERAL CANDIDATES. AND ALSO, PEOPLE WHO HAVE COME UP THROUGH THE SYSTEM AND HAVE WORKED HARD AT THESE CONVENTIONS FOR YEARS. SO A REALLY GOOD EXAMPLE IS ATTY. GENERAL. , DAVE JONES FROM SACRAMENTO HAS WORKED THESE CONVENTIONS FOR A LONG TIME, SO HE FINISHED WELL AHEAD OF JAVIER BECERRA. THE APPOINTED ATTY. GENERAL. DIED BY. I THINK THAT'S WHY JOHN CHUNG, THE STATE TREASURER WHO PREVIOUSLY SERVED AS THE STATE CONTROLLER, WHY HE DID RELATIVELY WELL IN THE GOVERNOR'S RACE, COMING IN SECOND BEHIND FRONT RUNNER GAVIN NEWSOM. IT TAKES 60% TO GET AN ENDORSEMENT AND DIANE DID NOT. BUT IT GOT IN THE 50s. IT SHOWS THAT A LOT OF THE FOLKS AT THE CONVENTION WERE REALLY LOOKING FOR SOMEONE MORE LIBERAL THAN DIANNE FEINSTEIN. I DON'T KNOW IF THAT IS TRUE OF THE DEMOCRATIC ELECTORATE AS A WHOLE, OR IF IT'S TRUE OF THE CALIFORNIA ELECTORATE AS A WHOLE. SO IT IS WORTH ASKING, WITHOUT THE ENDORSEMENTS ACTUALLY BEING APPROVED, TO WHAT EXTENT WILL THE RESULTS THIS WEEKEND BE RELEVANT TO VOTERS MONTHS FROM NOW? >> YOU ARE MENTIONING STATE SENATOR. KEVIN DeLEON GOT 54% OF THE VOTE OVER INCUMBENT U.S. SENATOR. DIANNE FEINSTEIN FOR THAT SENATE SEAT. WHAT DOES THAT DO FOR DAILY OWN, FOR HIS CAMPAIGN. >> IT GIVES HIM A BOOST FOR A DAY OR TWO, COUPLE OF NEW CYCLES MAY BE. BUT I DON'T THINK IT IS SAFE TO SAY WILL HAVE THE SAME EFFECT AS IF HE WOULD WIN THE ENDORSEMENT. SO DIANNE FEINSTEIN LEADS IN POLLS BY SIGNIFICANT MARGIN. SHE HAS FAR OUTRAISED HIM, AND INCLUDING CONTRIBUTING A LOT OF HER OWN MONEY. DeLEON HAS ONLY RAISED A FEW HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS. AND HIS NAME RECOGNITION IS QUITE SMALL, LACKING THAT ENDORSEMENT, IT IS ABSOLUTELY GOOD NEWS FOR HIM. AND HE DESERVES RECOGNITION FOR GETTING THE SUPPORT OF PARTY ACTIVISTS OVER THE WEEKEND. WILL IT TRANSFORM THE RACE? A LOT OF PEOPLE DON'T THINK IT WILL. >> ONE OF THE BIG THINGS PEOPLE WERE LOOKING FOR WAS HEARING FROM THE MAJOR CANDIDATES FOR CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR. HERE'S A SAMPLE OF SOME OF THE SPEECHES FROM THOSE CANDIDATES. >> THIS IS MORE THAN A POLITICAL CAMPAIGN. IT'S ABOUT DEMOCRATS ACTING LIKE DEMOCRATS. IN A BATTLE FOR AMERICA'S SOUL AGAINST A PRESIDENT THAT DOES NOT HAVE ONE. WE HAVE ENOUGH DEMOCRATS WORRYING ABOUT TESLA DRIVERS. WE NEED A GOVERNOR WHO IS THINKING EVERY DAY ABOUT HOW FAMILIES ARE GOING TO EARN GAS MONEY, OR BUS FARE TO GET TO WORK. >> TALK IS CHEAP, I HAVE THE EXPERIENCE AND THE FISCAL RECORD NECESSARY TO MAKE THIS POSSIBLE. AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, I WILL ALWAYS STAND UP FOR YOU. >> YOU NEED A VISIONARY GOVERNOR WITH A BRASS BACKBONE, NOT AFRAID OF BULLIES AND NOT AFRAID TO -- AND WON'T KOWTOW TO THE RICH AND POWERFUL. THAT'S WHO I AM, THAT'S WHAT I'VE DONE AND WILL ALWAYS DO IS YOUR GOVERNOR. >> IN ORDER YOU HEARD THEIR THE CANDIDATES, WHO SEEMED TO HAVE THE CLEAREST MESSAGE? >> THE MESSAGE I THINK RESONATED THE MOST IN THE WHOLE IS GAVIN NEWSOM. HE'S BEEN COURTING THE PROGRESSIVE GROUPS, THE ACTIVISTS, THE LABOR UNIONS. AND IN FACT, HE'S BEEN RUNNING A GENERALLY PROGRESSIVE CAMPAIGN SINCE HE GOT INTO THE RACE, SINCE HE STARTED RUNNING FOR GOVERNOR YEARS AGO. HIS SPEECH ABSOLUTELY FIRED UP THE CROWD. A WELL-CRAFTED SPEECH AND TIME DID EXACTLY SO THAT IT WOULD AND THAT IT'S ALLOTTED TIME SO HE WASN'T PLAYED OFF THE WAY SOME OF THE OTHER CANDIDATES WERE. I THINK HE DID WHAT HE NEEDED TO DO THIS WEEKEND. >> THERE WAS A MAJOR DEVELOPMENT TODAY ON THE REPUBLICAN SIDE OF THE GOVERNOR'S RACE. >> FORMER SACRAMENTO AREA REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMAN JED ARIES DROPPED OUT OF THE COMP -- CAMPAIGN JUST A FEW WEEKS AFTER GETTING IN AND RAISED ABOUT $100,000. AND FINALLY LAUNCHED A WEBSITE, BUT HE WASN'T GETTING A LOT OF TRACTION. WHY DOES THIS MATTER? IT'S BECAUSE OF THE MAKEUP OF THE JUNE BALLOT. THAT'S THE TOP TWO FINISHERS IN JUNE, REGARDLESS OF POLITICAL PARTY ADVANCE TO THE NOVEMBER GENERAL ELECTION. IT SEEMS PRETTY LIKELY GAVIN NEWSOM WILL BE ONE OF THEM BASED ON POLLS. THIS MAKES IT HARDER FOR CHUNG AND VERA GOSSET TO FINISH IN THE TOP TWO. BECAUSE NOW THEY HAVE TO ALSO BE CONCERNED ABOUT A MORE CONSOLIDATED VOTE ON THE REPUBLICAN SIDE. IF SAN DIEGO BIG -- BUSINESSMAN JOHN COX WAS INVESTED IN MILLION DOLLARS OF HIS OWN FORTUNE AND TRAVIS ALLEN, WHOSE TRYING TO FIRE UP THE TEA PARTY CROWD. SO IF ONE OF THEM CAN CONSOLIDATE THE VOTE, THERE IS A GOOD CHANCE THEY CAN, EVEN IN THE STATE AS BLUE AS CALIFORNIA FINISH AHEAD OF THE OTHER TWO. >> SOME SAN DIEGO'S WERE LOOKING TO THE CONVENTION TO NARROW DOWN THE WIDE DEMOCRATIC FIELD IN THE 49th CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT TO REPLACE CONGRESSMAN DARRELL I SAID. WHAT HAPPENED THERE? >> THERE WAS NO ENDORSEMENT. THAT WAS THE CASE IN SEVERAL OF THESE CONTESTED CONGRESSIONAL RATE SINCE. AND THAT'S A PROBLEM FROM DEMOCRATS. DEMOCRATS ARE WORRIED THAT THERE ARE SO MANY CANDIDATES THAT AGAIN IN THIS TOP TWO SYSTEM MAYBE A DEMOCRAT WOULD NOT ADVANCE TO THE NOVEMBER GENERAL, WHICH WOULD IN RATES RACES WHICH DEMOCRATS NEARLY 1 A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO AND SEE AS A VERY CRUCIAL DISTRICT TO RECAPTURE IF THEY HOPE TO WIN BACK THE HOUSE. THERE ARE TWO RELATIVELY WELL-KNOWN IN THE DISTRICT REPUBLICANS RUNNING, DIANE HARKEY AND ASSEMBLYMAN ROCKY SHABBOS. SO IT'S CONCEIVABLE THAT THE TWO OF THEM COULD FINISH IN THE TOP TWO IN JUNE. AND OF THE SEVERAL DEMOCRATS RUNNING INCLUDING THE 2016 RUNNING UP -- NONE OF THEM WOULD FINISH IN THE TOP TWO AND DEMOCRATS WOULD JUST NOT HAVE A SHOT AT WINNING THIS RACE IN THE FALL. >> BEN, THANKS AGAIN. >> YOU'RE WELCOME.
Delegates at the California Democratic Party's convention in San Diego failed to reach a consensus to endorse candidates for multiple high-level positions Sunday.
Candidates for the U.S. Senate and for California governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general all failed to receive enough support to receive the endorsement of the state Democratic Party.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who at 84 is the Senate's oldest member, did not receive the 60 percent of votes necessary for an endorsement at this weekend's gathering at the San Diego Convention Center.
The indecision was seen as a rejection of the incumbent Feinstein, who received 37 percent of the vote, compared to 54 percent for Democratic state Senator Kevin de Leon, who has launched an insurgent campaign against Feinstein.
"The outcome of today's endorsement vote is an astounding rejection of politics as usual, and it boosts our campaign's momentum as we all stand shoulder to shoulder against a complacent status quo," de Leon said in a statement released late Saturday.
Recent statewide polls show Feinstein with a sizeable lead over de Leon.
The gubernatorial vote was splintered among the top four candidates: Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, state Treasurer John Chiang and former state Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine Eastin, an outcome that was widely expected.
Newsom received 39 percent of delegates' votes, Chiang received 30 percent and Eastin received 20 percent. Villaraigosa came in last at 9 percent.
Candidates for state attorney general also failed to reach the 60 percent threshold in the race for attorney general between incumbent Xavier Becerra, who took office in January 2017 after being appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown to replace Sen. Kamala Harris, and former state Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. The tally was 56 percent for Jones and 42 percent for Becerra.
Some candidates who won endorsements were incumbent state Controller Betty Yee, state Sen. Ricardo Lara for insurance commissioner, incumbent Secretary of State Alex Padilla, Board of Equalization member Fiona Ma for state treasurer and Assemblyman Tony Thurmond for state superintendent of public instruction.
All of San Diego's Democratic congressional delegation won endorsements as well. Delegates also endorsed Ammar Campa-Najjar, who is running for embattled Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter's seat in the 50th Congressional District. No consensus was reached for the 49th Congressional District, where current Rep. Darrell Issa announced he will not run for re-election.
Delegates also approved positions on five state ballot measures.
The party supports the following:
–Proposition 68, which authorizes $4 billion in bonds for projects for parks, environmental protection, water infrastructure and flood protection.
–Proposition 69, which restricts revenue from diesel sales taxes and the Transportation Improvement Fee to be used only for transportation- related purposes.
–Proposition 71, which moves the date a ballot measure will go into effect to the fifth day after the secretary of states certifies the results. Currently, ballot measures go into effect the day after it's approved.
–Proposition 72, which excludes new rainwater capture systems from property tax reassessments.
–Delegates opposed Proposition 70, which will require a two-thirds vote in 2024 to pass a spending pan for revenue from California's cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gases.
An estimated 3,400 delegates participated in the convention, which was scheduled to wrap up Sunday.