As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Campaign Update: CA-Sen, CA-Gov, CA-10

A few campaign items that will hopefully tickle your fancy this morning.

• CA-Sen: According to the San Jose Mercury News, former HP CEO Carly Fiorina is "seriously considering challenging" Barbara Boxer for the US Senate. Yeah, that would be challenging, wouldn't it? What a fearsome figure she casts, as a failed corporate CEO who got a $25 million dollar golden parachute while laying off half her company! Who was 20 points down to Boxer in the last poll! "Corporate CEO who got giant bonus for bad work" doesn't seem to me to be the profile of a political challenger anytime soon.

I'm still holding out the possibility that this is an April Fool's Day joke.

• CA-Gov: When you are having major staff problems 14 months before the primary, I'd say your gubernatorial campaign is in trouble.

Lt. Gov. John Garamendi is saying goodbye to his senior adviser today. And whether he likes it or not, he is saying hello to speculation his upstart gubernatorial bid is struggling.

Senior campaign adviser Jude Barry, who formerly managed the 2006 gubernatorial campaign of then-state controller Steve Westly, let his new boss know that he would resign to pursue other opportunities on March 31.

On his Facebook page, Barry thanked Garamendi but didn't exactly offer an upbeat assessment of the campaign.

"I like John Garamendi and appreciate the opportunity to have worked with him and many other good people on his team, both on the campaign and in the lieutenant governor's office," he wrote. "But at this point, I've done all I can to help him. It doesn't feel right to just hang around the campaign. I wish John and the campaign good luck."

According to CalBuzz, Garamendi has yet to find campaign co-chairs or finance co-chairs, and we all know that winning statewide costs a ridiculous amount of money and essentially a two-year campaign, if not longer. I'm toying with the idea that California ought to have a slate of regional gubernatorial primaries, to encourage retail campaigning and keep costs down in the near term, to allow a greater multiplicity of views. Otherwise we will keep getting the same old hacks and rich people running for these seats. The state is big enough so that it makes a decent amount of sense.

• CA-10: Mark DeSaulnier continues to marshal institutional support for his presumed run for Congress replacing Ellen Tauscher, earning the endorsement of Senate leader Darrell Steinberg. Though he hasn't formally announced, DeSaulnier announced plans to walk districts as early as this week. That's probably a good idea, because a new poll shows that nobody has a decent name ID in the district.

A poll commissioned by potential Democratic congressional candidate and former BART Director Dan Richard shows state Sen. Mark DeSaulnier in statistical dead heat with Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan (15 and 13 percent respectively) and Richard trailing at 7 percent.

The poll showed DeSaulnier with a 19 percent favorable approval rating compared with a 9 percent unfavorable while 23 percent did not know. The remaining 49 percent said they had never heard of him. Ouch.

Buchanan received similar numbers: 16 percent favorable approval, 8 percent unfavorable, 29 percent didn’t know and 47 percent had never heard of her.

We just saw a special election in upstate New York where over 150,000 people voted. This special election, like most in California, will be lucky to get half that many.

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