Gloria Lead Against Bry For San Diego Mayor Shrinking But Still Substantial
Speaker 1: 00:00 San Diego has a new member of Congress in the 53rd district. Speaker 2: 00:04 And new generation of leaders is about looking at old problems with a new lens and a sense of urgency. Speaker 1: 00:12 I'm Maureen Cavenaugh with Alison st. John. This is KPBS midday edition. The San Diego County board of supervisors is leaning toward a democratic majority Speaker 2: 00:29 Ready for the kind of leadership that fights for working San Diego's fights to protect our environment, um, really puts our community first. And that's what we're seeing in these results so far, Speaker 1: 00:40 We'll discuss the winning and losing local ballot measures of state propositions and ask why the polls did not predict this national Nailbiter that's ahead on midday edition. Speaker 1: 01:01 The national vote is turning out to be much closer than most analysts and polls predicted former vice president, Joe Biden is expected to speak to the nation about the electoral vote count, which right now has Biden in the lead. When Biden speaks, we'll bring those remarks to you. Live well. Votes are also still being counted in many Senate and congressional races across the country. Most of San Diego's congressional races were won handily by incumbents and newcomer, Sarah Jacobs in the 53rd district. There's a tighter race in the 50th between Darryl ISAT and Amar camp in a jar and in the city of San Diego, Todd, Gloria is leading in the race for mayor, but before we get into the specifics of those races, let's get an overview of the election. Joining me is UC San Diego political science professor fad Couser and Thad welcome Speaker 3: 01:54 Happy election day part two, Marie. Speaker 1: 01:57 Yeah, hard to when we don't know how many parts that are going to be. That's my first question to you. How long in your opinion is the County counting, going to go on in the race between Joe Biden and Donald Trump? What are your thoughts about that? Speaker 3: 02:12 Well, as always, we're going to have to be patient and, and say, let's see. So I think what we're seeing here is president Trump outperforming the polls. There wasn't a Biden landslide, which, which if the polls are absolutely right, we would've seen, he won the close battleground States, places like Texas, like Florida, Ohio in Texas, but Joe Biden seems to be outperforming Hillary Clinton in 2016, uh, potentially taking Arizona and Wisconsin and leading so far in by net razor, thin margin in Michigan. The reason why we need to be so patient is because Americans have changed the way they go to with COVID. We're seeing absentee ballots in States where people choose to cast their ballot by mail. We're seeing them shifting hugely Ballou, hugely democratic from, from both poles. And as we've seen some of these late votes come in. So that means what you see in early returns, not what you're going to see when things are finalized. That's why counting all these races is important. We're looking at at least potentially 24 hours for Pennsylvania, for, uh, for Wisconsin, for Michigan. And let's remember that, uh, that many of these States allow ballots cast on or before election day, but arriving thereafterwards to still be legally counted and all States allow that for overseas military voters waiting for all those votes to be counted, if they could affect me margin could take us another day or two. Speaker 1: 03:39 I want to go back to what you said about the polling, because once again, as in 2016, it appears that much of the pre-election polling got it wrong. Uh, Biden had strong leads in most polls, and now we're talking about perhaps a narrow victory. So what's going on? Speaker 3: 03:57 Well, I think to fully evaluate the polls, we're going to need to know the final results to know exactly whether there was air and how much air there was in the States where we do have final results in a place like Ohio and Florida, that that were tossups. Uh, you saw Donald Trump running ahead, uh, strongly ahead of the polls. So what's going on there? Well, one of the questions could be, this could be really driven by turnout. It seems like Donald Trump energized, uh, his base to an extraordinary, uh, to, in an extraordinary fashion people who stayed home in 2018, right? Where he, where the, the fact that his base wasn't as energized at the Democrats was a big part of why the Democrats retook the house in 2018. Now, if that bears out, then the question is, is this, was this just like intrinsic interest? Was this a function of the Republican party being more aggressive than in-person geo TV, get out the vote, uh, um, rallies in person that we saw, whereas the Democrats were doing things more over zoom and in driving rallies, that could be part of the future, but I think we need definitely more time to figure out exactly what the error was, who it was among and, and what the potential causes were. Speaker 1: 05:10 No Democrats also hope to regain the Senate. Where does that effort stand at this moment? Speaker 3: 05:16 I think things are looking like a much more narrow path for Democrats to regain the Senate. Some of, some of the strongest chances for, for winning the three, if Joe Biden wins or four seats needed, if, uh, if the Republicans hold the vice-president as the tie-breaking vote in the Senate, those went away really fairly early on election night. Uh, when Maine looked like it was strongly going for Susan Collins who cast many tough votes in support of the president and, and in many of his controversial nominees, she has now survived yet another political challenge in, in the ever competitive seat in Maine, uh, in North Carolina, where Democrats that is huge spending hundreds of millions of dollars on this, on the Senate seat, it looks now like the Republicans will hold that seat. And the democratic candidate, uh, may have really shot himself in the foot with, uh, with, with, uh, a personal scandal. Um, there are some, a few democratic pickups, but they would have to run the table of the remaining seats in order to retake control of the Senate, which would then allow major policy moves. If Joe Biden wins, potentially changing things like, uh, changing the structure of the Supreme court that looks like it has much less likelihood right now. Speaker 1: 06:31 Well, bringing it back to here in San Diego, the fact that so many ballots were returned and counted before election day made calling many races possible last night, but which races do you think might still be affected by votes yet to be counted? Speaker 3: 06:45 Yeah. So in, in election where nationally, we had to be more patient than usual. Uh, we're allowed to indulge a little bit of our inpatients, uh, in California and in San Diego where the extraordinary number of votes cast early. So not only were more people voting by mail, but people were actually not waiting until the last minute getting things in and all the early voting run in these super polling sites by by the registrar. And it seemed to perform incredibly well, that led to a stronger count. And so it looks like San Diego mayor's race, uh, the, the balance of power in supervisor's district with Dems capturing, it looks like, uh, a majority of those look like they have fairly strong leads, but competitive, uh, competitive congressional districts and, and many of these like really important local races school districts. We see some really close fights in school districts where that really matters for things like reopening, uh, and, and approaching the pandemic. Those are ones where anything that's within these five percentage point margins. There's still enough ballots out there that we need to count in order for anyone to have a firm conclusion on that. Speaker 1: 07:52 Okay, dad will be back to talk with you about the important state propositions, but right now we'll turn our focus to specific races. And that begins with Alison and San Diego mayor. Speaker 4: 08:04 The race for San Diego mayor is still too close to coal, but democratic state assemblyman Todd Gloria has a healthy double-digit lead over democratic city council, woman, Barbara Bry. Joining me to talk about the mayor's race and the outcomes of the other elections in the city of San Diego is KPBS Metro reporter, Andrew Bowen. Welcome Andrew. Hi, Alison. Thanks. So what do we know about the status of the mayor's race? Speaker 1: 08:28 Well, as you said, we know Todd Gloria has a fairly comfortable lead. Uh, it's currently, as we speak, uh, just over 56% to breeze, just under 44%, we know that, um, you know, when the first results were posted, those were the mail-in ballots, the early votes in person, he had a slightly bigger lead just over 57%. So his, uh, share of the vote has narrowed ever so slightly, Speaker 5: 08:56 Even less than one percentage point as more votes were counted, and that could continue to happen as the votes continue to be counted. Um, but you know, that we also know that the share of the overall votes that were counted on election night was expected to be larger because so many people voted early and, and, and, uh, by mail. So I think that, um, you know, if you're tall, Gloria, right now, you're, you're feeling pretty good, Speaker 4: 09:21 Huh. But going into this race, polling showed that these candidates were running virtually neck and neck. Why do you think the polls didn't capture what actually happened Speaker 5: 09:30 Well beyond the fact that that accurate polling is really difficult to do nowadays? I think what it likely means is that, um, you know, most of the polls showed at least a third of city voters undecided as of October. And what this likely means is that most of those undecided voters ended, ended up voting for Todd Gloria. And that's not all that surprising given that he had a lot of really big institutional backing and big name endorsements. So if you're a democratic voter and you don't know much about either of the mayoral candidates and one of the candidates, Todd Gloria is endorsed by the County party endorsed by Senator Kamala Harris and other big name Democrats. He might seem like the safer bet, Speaker 4: 10:14 But, um, both marital candidates are Democrats, but they were appealing to really different voters talk about their campaign strategies and how their approaches appear to have worked at this point. Speaker 5: 10:26 Yeah, well, uh, council member Brie really painted herself as an outsider as an independent minded Democrat, uh, sort of anti-establishment. And she was really reaching out to more conservative voters in some of the positions she was taking and the issues that she was talking about. She really wanted to build a coalition of Democrats who were upset with the, the direction of the County party Republicans and independence. It, uh, you know, one thing we might learn now is, um, Republicans in this city, uh, are, are maybe not the King maker that some people thought they would be. Uh, Democrats have a very big advantage in terms of voter registration. And also it probably didn't help Barbara breathe that Scott Sherman, the Republican endorsed candidate in the primary and a fellow city council member said a few days before the election that he was voting for Todd Gloria. And he had some pretty, uh, uh, unflattering things to say about council member Bree. Beyond that, I think that there was probably a, a boost in progressive turnout, which may have worked in Todd Gloria's favor because many people were turning out to vote against Donald Trump. Speaker 4: 11:39 No, there are still more than 300,000 votes to be counted and we won't have updated results till tomorrow evening. Is it possible though that one of these candidates will make a statement before then? Speaker 5: 11:50 You know, we know that, uh, Todd Gloria is speaking to reporters afternoon, um, listening to what he said last night, he really stopped short of declaring victory. Um, here's a bit of what he said at that point, San Diego, because of you, we are poised to make history while there are still votes to be counted. I believe that tonight is a night to celebrate. So, you know, you can hear Todd Gloria saying, he's, he's, uh, feeling good about the race, not quite ready to declare victory as, as so many more votes are left to be counted. Now, uh, council member Bree is not expected to do any interviews or, or speak to reporters again today, but she put out a statement which essentially, um, mirrors what she said last night, uh, which is this Speaker 1: 12:39 We are behind, but there's still a lot of votes left to count. Uh, I remember that in the primary we were behind on election night and over the next few weeks, we made up the ground as more votes were counted. Speaker 4: 12:53 And Andrew, the city council races could be really significant too, because based on the people leading and the results we have at the moment, the council could become an eight to one democratic majority, any surprises in these races, Speaker 5: 13:05 I am a little bit surprised by the margins that we're seeing in the two city council races that had a Democrat versus Republican. The first being district five, this is Scripps ranch, Rancho Penasquitos, Rancho Bernardo. Uh, it's currently held by an independent who used to be a Republican and he's termed out. So we have Democrat, Marnie Von Wilpert, uh, against Republican Joe Leventhal. Of course, these races are officially nonpartisan. Although party affiliation does play a pretty big role in, in local politics. Uh, Marnie Von Wilpert has also a double digit lead in that district. It was once seen as the Republican stronghold. So, um, you know, if, if the margins were closer at this point, if it were a tighter race than I would say, she might have reason to be worried that late later counted votes would not be in her favor, but, um, she's got a pretty comfortable lead and that's a bit of a surprise to me. Speaker 5: 14:01 And then in district seven, we've got a Raul Campero a Democrat, uh, with an even bigger lead over the Republican in that race. No Lizo says, so, you know, in terms of what an eight one democratic majority on the city council would do, uh, we don't really know yet, and they already have a six, three majority on the city council right now. And, uh, they're obviously going to be capturing the mayor's race, um, either way the Democrats. So, uh, you know, perhaps it could be just more of a symbolic victory, a victory, um, you know, in terms of Democrats now are really taking over city government. Speaker 4: 14:42 Yeah. Beginning to look like Sacramento. Now, San Diego city voters are also weighing in on five ballot measures. None of them have been called yet, but there are some pretty clear leads starting with measure a that one would raise taxes to fund affordable housing. And it's leading with 57% of the vote. It's leading with 57% of the vote, but that's not the two thirds majority it needs. What are you taking away from that result? Speaker 5: 15:07 Well, I'm taking away that, uh, it's really hard to raise taxes in San Diego, despite the bluing of the city, despite Democrats having an increasingly big majority among voters, uh, that two thirds threshold in order to raise taxes for a specific purpose is, um, might just be insurmountable for the city. At this point, there are too many Republicans and too many independence and too many Democrats perhaps that, that are averse to raising taxes, uh, for, for a tax measure like this, to actually make it across that two thirds finish line Speaker 4: 15:41 And measure B would establish a police review board for the city with subpoena power. And it has a commanding lead with 75% of the votes. What are the voters saying here? Speaker 5: 15:51 Well, I think they're saying they want more independent oversight of the police. Uh, this measure was certainly helped by the massive, uh, wave of protests that we saw in the spring and summer, uh, in favor of black lives matter and things like that. And so, um, you know, it also, I think says that, you know, this, this, right, this I'll say this measure is not a big surprise, the margin of victory, because even the police union had dropped its opposition to this measure. There was no statement in the voter guide, uh, against it. So, uh, without any funded or organized opposition measure, B seemed like a, uh, an easy win for, for its supporters Speaker 4: 16:32 And then measure, he would remove the 30 foot height limit and parts of the midway district. That's the area around the sports arena. It's also leading with 57% of yes. Boats that could mean a big change in that part of the city. Right? Speaker 5: 16:46 Absolutely. Uh, it could mean more development in midway. It could mean, uh, you know, th the, the supporters really saw this as vital to the revitalization of that neighborhood, which is, um, not the prettiest place in, in San Diego right now. Um, this measure also not a big surprise that it's winning, uh, with such a big margin. It had the support of both Republican and democratic parties in San Diego County, a host of, uh, of interest groups. So, uh, you know, th the supporters there, I think, uh, we're feeling pretty good and, and it's very likely to, to ultimately pass. Speaker 4: 17:21 I've been speaking with KPBS, Metro reporter, Andrew Bowen, Andrew. Thank you. Thank you, Alison. And we should mention the other two city ballot measures measure C, which would require district Toni elections for the San Diego unified school board. It's leading with 69% of voters supporting the measure and measure D which would allow the San Diego unified school board to remove a board member. Also looks like it will pass with 86% voting in favor. The San Diego County board of supervisors is one of the most powerful agencies in the region. The board controls a $6.5 billion budget that funds social services, mental health, and law enforcement among other things. The board also decides on new development in the unincorporated areas, in the county's district, one race, Nora Vargas appears to be leading of a Ben waySo to represent the South County. Both are Democrats in district two, a reliably Republican seat Poway mayor. Steve Voss is marginally ahead, a former state Senator Joel Anderson, but the district three seat on the board is the most significant politically as it's a swing district and will determine the balance of power on the five member County board. That seat stretches from the coast at Del Mar from Salada beach and Encinitas across to Escondido. It's currently held by Republican Christian gas bar. KPBS has called the race in favor of gas bars, challenger, Democrat, Terra Lawson Riemer Riemer currently has almost 60% of the vote, Tara. Welcome. Speaker 6: 18:50 Hello. Thank you so much. Now Speaker 4: 18:52 The results aren't finalized yet, but you appear poised to win. And yours is a district that has changing politically. How has that played into your winning numbers so far? Speaker 6: 19:01 I honestly think, uh, folks across the district, uh, have been ready for some time and increasingly over the last four years, ready for the kind of leadership that fights for working San Diego wins fights to protect our environment, um, really puts our community first. And that's what we're seeing in these results so far Speaker 4: 19:19 Confirm. This would be your first time holding public office that you've been involved in politics for years. Would this be a steep learning curve for you? Speaker 6: 19:26 I, I think it's something I come incredibly well-prepared for. Right. So I've worked in the Obama administration. I've worked with the world bank, I've worked with the United nations. So a lot of the, the nuts and bolts of what it's going to take to get things done are, um, things that I've done and am good at doing and have built a lifetime of, of engaging on policy and policy analysis. Um, and then I also, I think I'm very fortunate to, to be trained as an economist. My PhD is in political economy. You really gives you a, uh, important expertise on fiscal policy, um, as well as being an attorney, uh, which is very helpful in sort of thinking through and understanding the nuts and bolts of how, uh, laws actually operate in action. So I, I think I probably come, um, to the, to the job, um, probably more prepared, more well-prepared than most, uh, some I'm really looking forward to being able to put those skills to work serving our community. Speaker 4: 20:19 The County board is, um, the agency that calls the shots in San Diego, but which businesses can open based on the state's tier system, when we're assessing the, um, reaction to the Corona virus, Kristin Gaspar was calling for more local control and she wanted fewer restrictions on businesses and businesses are suffering. Where do you stand on that? Very difficult question. Speaker 6: 20:40 So it's an incredibly, incredibly difficult question. I think we're all really suffering. I mean, this is this COVID crisis been going on since March and now we're in November. And I think we're going to be in it probably for another year before we can really say we're on the other side. So it's, um, it's a really huge burden on not just our businesses, but also, uh, employees who've lost their jobs, um, parents who are trying to homeschool their children, or, uh, have their children enrolled in zoom school while they're also working. And, uh, people who can't see their, their family members, um, you know, grandparents who can't see their grandkids. So I think it's just the psychological, the economic, uh, the social toll is just absolutely enormous in addition to the, you know, the public health and the real risk that people face them in terms of, you know, getting sick and losing a life or losing a loved one to we're all in this together. Speaker 6: 21:31 And I think that has to be our guiding principle. So how do we come together to, to tackle this crisis in a way that's going to protect all of us and, and make sure that we're, we're especially, um, you know, doing what we can for those who are most vulnerable. Um, so in that regard, um, you know, I think it'll be important to sort of take a fresh look at, uh, the right kind of response to this crisis. You know, now that we've been in it for a long while, um, I'd like to revisit again, whether, uh, we can scale up, um, uh, contact tracing and testing in the ways they've done in other countries where, uh, there's just so much more testing, um, which, you know, is something, you know, w they've tried our counties tried really hard to do that, but it might be worth trying again. Speaker 6: 22:13 And, and looking at that, and in terms of focusing on anything that should get, uh, opened or prioritized opening, I think that it needs to, we need to lead with our schools and daycares, uh, because it's really not only important for working parents to be able to have their children in school. Um, and it's a massive drag on our whole economy. Uh, when, when parents aren't able to send their kids to school or daycare, uh, it also is disproportionately impacting women. I mean, we're seeing women dropping out of the workforce in droves because they just have so many more of the demands of, of childcare. Um, and they're not able to balance the two, uh, given that we don't have the, the schools open and that's another piece of it, but also the kids, you know, so many kids are missing out on really, uh, vital learning years and socialization. Um, so I think that's my priority and then kind of building from there, um, out as to what else we can and reopen safely for, for our, uh, committee. Speaker 4: 23:12 So this, this seat is one of five votes on the board, on new developments. What will you do to encourage or discourage developers from proposing large new master plan developments in the back country? Speaker 6: 23:23 I think it's just about resetting expectations. I think, um, folks know I'm not going to be supporting amendments to the general plan. I think we should stick with the footprint that the general plan has established and not going to be voting in favor of those general plan amendments. Uh, but on the other hand, I am going to be, you know, really taking a hard look at, um, what the County can do to make it more feasible and economically viable to build affordable housing closer to where people live and work. So, you know, I think there's a little bit of a carrot and a stick, right? Maybe no more projects in the back country, but certainly going to be a much better and more proactive partners for developers who wanted a build in sort of the right places in our community. Speaker 4: 24:03 Kristin Gaspar, who held the seat previously also had a seat on the regional transportation planning board SANDAG, which is proposing a radical shift of resources away from, uh, roads and towards beefing up public transit. Gasper was very skeptical, skeptical of that plan. Where do you stand? Speaker 6: 24:19 Well, I think it's vital that we look to a new approaches to transit in, um, in San Diego, right? This old approach of, uh, just building more and more roads is part of what's led to our sprawl development and building in the back country. But it's also really contributed to traffic because, uh, you know, at the end of the day for building houses farther from where people live and work, then everyone's just jammed onto the roads trying to get where they need to go. Um, so I think it's important. We take a fresh look at that. I, I, the specifics of the SANDAG proposal I've said, uh, for a long while now that I think there's a lot that's in there. That's interesting, but, um, I'd like to see a impact study and impact a feasibility study to see really how is this going to play economically in San Diego? Speaker 6: 25:01 Um, you know, we know that there's a lot on paper there that SANDAG has put out, but, uh, I'd like to see an independent assessment about, um, you know, what's, what's the impact going to be economically. And in terms of, you know, how well we're really going to be able to, um, uh, support affordable housing options with nutrients and investments. And I think that's important. Uh, and certainly it's vital that we recognize that San Diego is really diverse and there's parts of San Diego that we need to invest in fixing our roads because, um, that's, what's, you know, that's all that we have and that's, that's what makes sense. And there's other parts of San Diego where, uh, public transit might make sense. Um, and those are not the same, and we need to embrace that diversity and, and have different solutions for different parts of our County. Speaker 4: 25:42 This is a swing district and Kristin Gaspar attacked you during the campaign as a, as a radical who will spend taxpayer money unwisely. What do you say to voters who might be worried about Speaker 6: 25:52 Couple of things? I mean, first of all, I would say it was just really sad, uh, sort of the tenor of the campaign. Um, you know, the, a lot of what they put out about it was just, uh, either completely a lie or a blatantly misleading and, um, was really, uh, I think, uh, a Testament to the strength of our campaign, um, that they, they couldn't figure out anything to say for Gaspar's own record. So they just had to spread a bunch of fear about me as a candidate. Um, you know, not that dissimilar from what Trump has done globally, nationally, and, uh, you know, the same thing, right? Communist socialist, Antifa, and then you hear Gasper saying whatever Trump was saying the day before, um, but directed at me. So I think that's the, really the, the core dynamic. Um, so I'm just mostly looking to hope that, um, our community can come together because I'm going to be a supervisor for everyone. Speaker 6: 26:42 And, uh, you know, I really hope people don't, uh, you get misled by those kinds of fear-mongering tactics that are, uh, the hallmark of you kind of desperate and, um, a little bit dirty campaigning. Um, so that's the main thing I would say, but then I would say more broadly it's, it's also frankly, just quite silly. Uh, you know, I'm an economist by training. I was, I worked in the Obama treasury department and I've worked around the world, helping economies recover from economic crises. Um, and one of the first things I'm really interested in doing is standing up, um, an initiative at the County that looks at a cost benefit, does cost benefit analysis of everything we do, uh, to make sure that the taxpayer money is being spent wisely and is going in the right direction to benefit our community. Um, and that's something we haven't had. And so those are the kinds of practical things I'm going to be bringing to the job on day one, Speaker 7: 27:32 Tara Lewis and Riemer who is currently ahead in the district three race on the San Diego County board of supervisors. Tara. Thank you. Thank you so much. Speaker 1: 27:47 This is KPBS midday edition. I'm Maureen Kevin Hall with Alison st. John. One of the most closely watched and most expensive congressional races in the country is in San Diego's 50th district. The seat once held by convicted Congressman Duncan, Hunter is being fought over by Republican Darryl ISAT and Democrat, uh, Mark camp in a jar. The tally now stands at 52% for Eissa almost 48% for camping, a jar with 78% of the vote counted. A winner has not been officially called in this race. Joining me with more on the 50th district races, KPBS reporter, Matt Hoffman, and Matt. Welcome Maureen. Now, Kevin jar has been campaigning in this district for almost four years. Can you tell us about his effort? Speaker 8: 28:32 And he jokingly says that a lot that he's been campaigning in this district that's heavily Republican for four years, just for a two year term, uh, really trying to flip the district blue. Obviously it appears that that's not going to be happening this year. Um, we know that he did run in 2018, got 48% of the vote. He's been doing this for a while. He did address supporters last night, basically saying, look, you know, no matter what happens, they feel like they've made an impact on the district. Speaker 7: 28:56 I know it's been a tough race with fits and starts and trials and tribulations and triumphs and defeats. You know, we've gone through primaries together. We've gone through generals now, a second general election together. And I really do believe we have changed the culture of this district forever. Speaker 8: 29:13 And we actually have an updated statement from campus as our posting I'm on social media this morning saying that they're still looking at the returns with a measure of hope and urging every vote to be counted. So, Maureen, it sounds like he's not ready to concede any time soon. Speaker 1: 29:26 What kind of an advantage did being a Republican give Daryl Eissa in this district? Speaker 8: 29:33 I think talking to him, he certainly thinks that that gave him a big experience, a big advantage in this, you know, he often touts his experience, um, as a proven conservative someone who can work with Democrats, but won't compromise his Republican values. I'm going to keep in mind too. There is a registration advantage in the district. Uh, there's about 40% of registered Republicans and about 30% registered Democrats. Um, and you know, we talk about, uh, Duncan Hunter being a damaged candidate. I think Eissa came in there and, you know, thought that this was his race to win, so to speak. Speaker 1: 30:01 So I [inaudible] is currently in the lead by nearly 12,000 votes. So what are analysts saying about whether or not Kevin ajar can overcome ISIS lead? Speaker 8: 30:11 Yeah, so talking with some of like political scientists, um, sort of what panned out last night is what they were predicting a Mar in the lead with some of the early returns, which we saw. And then, you know, as they predicted a, a sort of a red wave on, on election day of Republican voters voting in person, uh, we saw that lead start to dwindle and then we saw Eissa, uh, come on top. And now that lead is continuing to grow. Um, so I think, you know, they, they, they think that lead's going to continue to grow. I think the Isla camp thinks the same thing. And, uh, at this point, you know, it just a small percentage of votes left. Only time will tell if he's able to overcome, uh, the isolate right now Speaker 1: 30:44 And the next numbers, the next vote count doesn't come out from the registrar's office until tomorrow. So we will have to wait for a little while. Has Daryl Eissa addressed supporters or made a statement about the vote count? Speaker 8: 30:57 Yeah, so I said it's immediate last night and this morning on K USI was very happy at this great, uh, to be honest, I'm planning a return to Congress. Um, and, uh, we know that he was saying, Hey, look, you know, if I'm going to win this, I need people to turn out on election day. And it appears that happened. Uh, he did mention during the interview that he talked to a Mar camp at ajar, but didn't mention anything about it and can see Speaker 1: 31:19 Now, Matt, you've been covering this race for some time. What were some of the crucial events that took place in your opinion? Speaker 8: 31:25 Uh, I, I think some of the crucial events, I mean, just in general, I mean, if you talk about money and you talk about ad buys, I don't know if an ad buys a crucial event, but, um, you know, we saw the Eissa campaign really hammering as a lot of negative ads to be Frank down, down the stretch. I suspending a lot of his own money. He mentioned in one interview that he was spending a hundred thousand dollars a day. Um, and then we saw, you know, maybe a turning point for camp in a jar that he sort of touched on last night. Uh, he did an interview with a very far right group that has since been removed from Facebook called defenders County, uh, that drew a lot of criticism from Democrats, even the, the County chair who says he looks, some of them are his views in terms of, if he doesn't know he's going to vote for, for president are not in line with the County party I'm in tomorrow last night, you know, made some comments in his speech to support her saying, I know some of you maybe at points question, you know, who I was or some of what I thought. Speaker 8: 32:11 So, um, you know, it's really unclear. We may never know if that impacted this race, but, uh, you gotta wonder, um, if a Martinez interview had anything to do with him losing. Speaker 1: 32:19 And once again, Darryl ISA is in the lead right now in the race for the 50th congressional district. A winner has not been officially called in this race. And I will thank KPBS reporter Matt Hoffman. Thank you so much for speaking with us, Speaker 8: 32:34 Exploring Speaker 1: 32:39 Sarah Jacobs has won her bid for a seat in Congress. Jacob's defeated San Diego city council member, Georgette Gomez, and the 53rd congressional district. It's the first time in nearly 20 years that the district has had a new representative and Democrat Jacobs will join a house of representatives that has maintained its democratic majority. And Sarah Jacobs joins me now in Sarah. Congratulations. Speaker 2: 33:02 Thank you so much. It's so great to be here with you. Speaker 1: 33:05 Now, you said that you represent a new generation of leaders. What do you think distinguishes that new generation? Speaker 2: 33:13 I think that being a new generation of leaders is about looking at old problems with a new lens and a sense of urgency, looking at new problems that, you know, Congress hasn't really been addressing it and also doing things differently and listening to everyone and respecting everyone and working with everyone to get things done. Speaker 1: 33:33 Can you give me an example of some of the issues that you'd like to look at or look at differently? Speaker 2: 33:39 I think the next Congress is going to be entirely focused on getting us out of this current public health and economic crisis. And my focus will be making sure that assistance gets to those who need it most our families and our small businesses. And I really want to make sure that in any stimulus package that passes, we have funding for childcare because we know so many families are really struggling with that. Speaker 1: 34:02 There are so many issues, as you say, that are facing this new Congress. What congressional committees do you have in mind that you'd like to join? Speaker 2: 34:10 I really hope to do something either in foreign affairs or armed services, given my background and the fact that so many members of our district are veterans and in military families. Uh, and I'm also hoping to be able to work on early childhood education and childcare. So that would be education and labor. Speaker 1: 34:28 You know, it looks like no matter the ultimate outcome of the presidential race, Washington will still be politically polarized. How will you get anything done in that environment? Speaker 2: 34:40 I think it just highlights how important it is to have leaders who can unite us and can bring our country back together. And that's how we ran our campaign, never compromising on our values, but building coalitions. And that's exactly how I'll govern. And while there are some issues that we can never compromise on. I also think there are a lot of areas like childcare, like support for small businesses, like infrastructure, like getting us out of this current economic and public health crisis that we can find bipartisan compromise on and make sure we're actually getting things done for families in our communities. Speaker 1: 35:14 No a lot was made during the campaign about the fact that you were fairly new to the 53rd district. How are you going to make sure that you are in touch with your constituents and their needs and their opinions? Speaker 2: 35:26 Well, I think the results of this election are a Testament to the way that I intend to govern, uh, which is to be out in the community as much as possible to make that we are constantly in conversation with constituents in the district, uh, and to make sure that everyone knows that even when we disagree, I will always listen and respect them. Speaker 1: 35:46 You know, there was, uh, a hope among some Democrats that there would be a sweep in this election, right. May be that we have a divided government again. So how will you be working on this stimulus package with your Republican colleagues? Speaker 2: 36:02 You know, I think that, uh, it's going to be important for us to get something done and to make sure that whoever is the president and whoever controls the Senate, that we are taking care of our families and our small businesses who are really struggling right now. And I know from talking to many of my future colleagues, um, that there is a lot of appetite on both sides of the aisle to make sure that we're actually helping people through this time. Speaker 1: 36:30 Are you looking forward to moving to Washington, Washington DC? Speaker 2: 36:34 Well, I'll definitely still be at San Diego and you know, San Diego is my home, but, um, you know, excited to take on this new journey and to really roll my sleeves up and get to work for the people of the 53rd congressional district. Speaker 1: 36:49 All right then. Well, Sarah, thank you so much. I really do appreciate your time and, and congratulations again. Speaker 2: 36:55 Thank you. Thank you. Looking forward to talking to you again soon. I'm sure Speaker 1: 37:04 This is KPBS midday edition. I'm Maureen Kavanaugh with Alison st. John California voters came out strongly in support of ride share apps like Uber and Lyft and their effort to keep their workers as contractors and effort to revive. Affirmative action got a thumbs down support was strong for two criminal justice reforms, but the votes were not there for rent control. Joining me with the details on some of the major state propositions. Welcome back to UC San Diego political science professor. [inaudible]. Thank you for joining us again. Speaker 3: 37:41 No problem. Speaker 1: 37:43 Let's start with proposition. The proposition put forward by San Diego assembly woman, Shirley Webber proposition 16. It wanted to roll back state prohibitions on affirmative action policies. Why did Weber put this proposition forward at this time? Speaker 3: 38:01 Well, this is something that the legislature couldn't do on its own. Uh, California initiatives can only be undone by another mode of the people. And what prop 16 would have done would be to roll back prop two Oh nine, which was an initiative that, that passed in a very different political era in 1996. And I think every folks, many people, including assembly woman, Shirley Weber, thought that the time was right with the social justice movement with a, with a renewed focus on, on institutional racism for a change to that policy prop 16, which proposed to, to allow affirmative action again, lost. And, and I think in some ways didn't get the political oxygen, it needed to make a complex argument. It really didn't have money behind the campaign hugely either way. It was drowned out in, in some of the national conversation about the presidency, uh, and, and it, the backers couldn't make their case and, and fell well short of the Mark. Speaker 1: 38:55 And so what you're saying is maybe voters didn't so much reject it as in a sense, not know what to do with it. Speaker 3: 39:03 Well, I think that, I think people understood what this did by, by allowing affirmative action, but I think the, the yes side didn't have the chance to make their, their, their tie between the, the institutional racism that many polls show everyone is recognized after the social justice movements of the summer and the set of government policies that might address it. I think that was the connection that, that wasn't made. Um, and, and what led to the defeat. Speaker 1: 39:30 Okay. There were three propositions that concerned criminal justice reform in California. Let's talk first about two of them. Okay. Voter supported prop 17 would restoring voting rights to parolees and they and voters supported the prop 17, but they rejected prop 20, which would have reclassified some misdemeanors as felonies. Basically they dovetail into an affirmation of criminal justice reform. Is that what you make of those votes? Speaker 3: 40:01 It is exactly. So California has been through these waves of, of getting tough on crime when we had rising crime rates in the 1990s and enacting some of these, uh, some of these sentence announcement measures, but then starting in, in 2014 and 2016, California passed a set of rules that when crime rates have been historically low, that, uh, the reduced penalties, uh, prop 20 would undo two of those past initiatives in large part, but voters rejected it by a large margin. So I think that the wave of reaction of saying we don't need to throw people away, lock up the keys and keep them out of the electorate that, uh, that, that wave, uh, continues. Speaker 1: 40:42 But then there's the apparent defeat of proposition 25. How did the effort to eliminate money bail wind up on the ballot in the first place? Speaker 3: 40:51 Yeah, it's a surprising one. This is a law that the legislature passed a year or two ago, and that would have moved from having cash bail, to risk-based, uh, determinations by judges and the cash bail industry, realizing that this was an existential threat. Put it up as a, as a referendum voters had to vote yes. To keep what the legislature did. So that's a bit confusing for many people because it's sort of many people vote, no. To keep the status quo, this you needed to vote yes. To put into a play, uh, a bill that the legislature had passed. Um, again, we didn't see a big campaign on this one and in the proponents, weren't able to make their argument and commits enough Californians Speaker 1: 41:31 That counselor and I are about state propositions on the ballot that we all voted on at AU yesterday. And the whole, the results are still coming in. It looks like prop 21, Nessa, a statewide rent control proposal during this time of economic uncertainty. What do you think that was defeated? Speaker 3: 41:50 I think the no campaign, uh, focus their arguments on, in some ways, some of the same arguments that the people want for yes, control for rent control. They were saying that they were making an argument that California will have more affordable housing. If this loses, it's a very complicated, uh, policy debate that we've been having for a long time on rent control, but we've had two initiatives now that would, that would make it more possible at the local level and, and neither have passed. So I think California is gonna need to find other routes to, to ensuring and creating affordable housing rent control doesn't seem to be the popular route. Speaker 1: 42:25 And then the most heavily advertised of all the state propositions proposition, 22 voters said, yes, they said app based drivers can stay contractors instead of employees. Can you give us a little background on that? Speaker 3: 42:40 Well, let's pull way back and think about how long we've had direct democracy in the world. So it started in ancient Greece. It was Switzerland we've had in about half of the States. This is the single most expensive campaign in the history of direct democracy. All of the app based companies, Uber, Uber, Lyft, Postmates put in more than ported, more than $200 million. So it was incredibly expensive. The end of the day, they convinced California it's that the worker protections that they put in place, things like minimum wage things like some moderate health benefits, things that they really didn't want to do until the legislature and an assembly woman assembly member, Lorena Gonzalez forced their hand by passing a bill. They moved the ball part of the way California said that was good enough, uh, and wanted to preserve this kind of quasi employee, independent contractor status, where people would be in where they drivers would be independent contractors, but have a few more protections. Speaker 1: 43:35 One good thing about the end of the election is we won't see any more of those Speaker 3: 43:39 It's kidney dialysis. That's another one I want, Speaker 1: 43:44 Is there another state proposition you'd like to highlight because that kidney dialysis got a lot of advertising. Speaker 3: 43:50 Yeah. Again, I think this was essentially a bargaining chip used by labor unions who are looking to get a better deal with kidney dialysis. It's the second time that the voters haven't gone along with it, but in some ways it's put pressure on those companies. So, uh, I'm afraid after this election, it's going to be all back to car commercials and Geico about politics anymore. Speaker 1: 44:14 What's the been the most surprising thing about this election for you then? Speaker 3: 44:19 Well, I think the biggest story in this election is the non-story of chaos. So we were really worried that yesterday's election day was going to be marred by voter intimidation by by problems, the polling places by long lines, because of this closely fought election in a pandemic, in a polarized nation across the country. We had a phenomenal job done by election officials, including ours in San Diego, and, and then made this election work. Both sides were energized and turned out at huge rates. And so that fact that we got through an election day without the chaos, that was a victory that needs to be celebrated. Speaker 1: 45:00 And just my last question, uh, quickly, if you could, what does the political direction of the city and County of San Diego look like now after this election? Speaker 3: 45:08 No, this is not the San Diego that I moved to 17 years ago. It is, it has shifted tremendously, uh, both in national politics. And now clearly in local politics from, from a majority Republican city council to one where Democrats now may have nine at eight seats out of nine to majority democratic County supervisor and to an area where there probably will be only one just barely Republican congressional district. And that, that transformation, which has stemmed in, in, in demography and political matters is, is the biggest story to me of San Diego. Over time, Speaker 1: 45:44 I've been speaking with UC San Diego political science professor Thad Couser. Thanks for speaking, sticking with us again, that thanks as always, always a pleasure, Maureen.