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Tea Party for three Menlo candidates

Original post made on Oct 13, 2010

As the Nov. 2 elections approach, hype flies fast and furious, and so do the innuendos. Former Menlo Park mayor Gail Slocum announced the Tea Party's support of three candidates for City Council -- much to the surprise of the candidates.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, October 13, 2010, 3:56 PM

Comments (41)

Posted by retired teacher, a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Oct 13, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Gail Slocum ties three of the Menlo Council candidates to the Tea Party yet the candidates themselves have no knowledge of such an endorsement. I believe she knew the candidates had not sought such an endorsement but was willing to distort the truth in an attempt to garner votes for what she calls the "progressives" running for office. Well this progressive member of the Democratic Party and Sierra Club, is not fooled by such disgusting tactics and plans to look carefully at each candidate, all issues, and hopes other voters will as well.


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 13, 2010 at 6:11 pm

It's great that the Sierra Club is supposedly focused on environmental issues when they made their endorsements. However, apparently, it's not clear that Kirsten Keith truly understands the important environmental issues, since in the debate she didn't know that AB 32-- the landmark legislation to reduce greenhouse emissions-- was signed into law in 2007. That alone would make me question whether the Sierra Club did its due diligence on the candidates they endorsed rather than just do a blanket endorsement of the candidates endorsed by the San Mateo County Democratic Central Committee, which is made up of people from the extreme side of the Democratic party.

Re Kirsten Keith and the Democratic party's endorsement, she must be towing the party line when it comes to fiscal issues. She's already stated twice that she wants to raise the UUT to balance the budget-- once at the LWV candidates forum and once during her endorsement interview with the Almanac. I'm not sure if she understands what pension reform means, let alone finances. Raising taxes to fix the significant pension issues is the the way to go!

Ms. Slocum's scare tactic to get democrats "off their butts" is exactly the kind of polarizing politicking that Menlo Park does NOT need. I find it ironic that Ms. Slocum was once a die-hard, registered Republican. I think the kind of extreme swings in ideology that she has exhibited is indicative of the kind of candidates she's supporting and for whom she is urging everyone to vote.

I would stay away from the two incumbents and someone who talks out of both sides of her mouth. As the Daily Post said, "Take the Broom to City Hall." Menlo Park does not need anymore extremists and dishonest politicians.


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 13, 2010 at 6:12 pm

Retired Teacher: Thanks for your excellent post! I hope others take the same care to learn more about the candidates and issues. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 13, 2010 at 6:15 pm

Correction to my first post: Raising the UUT to fix the significant pension issues is NOT the way to go!


Posted by old timer, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 13, 2010 at 9:49 pm

Keith is not the only candidate looking to raise taxes.

Robinson wanted to consider raising the UUT also and he really wanted, the TOT on the Hotels raised, but was stopped when neither Cohen or Boyle would go along.

The current City manager is certainly on record as saying we can cover the deficit with raising the UUT. So the Slate not advocated by Slocum, Keith, Robinson and Cline are all tax raisers --- Call then tax and spenders


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 13, 2010 at 11:05 pm

Old Timer: From Slocum's post, it looks like she wants Keith, Robinson, and Cline-- all of whom are "tax and spenders," as you put it. Bad choices, if you want to the current financial mess that the incumbents helped make. Robinson and Cline have had the last four years to prove themselves. Menlo Park deserves more than the status quo.

I skimmed through the Almanac's endorsements and saw that the only candidate who does not want to raise the UUT, or any taxes, is Ohtaki.


Posted by Morris Brown, a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Oct 14, 2010 at 4:58 am

I am supporting Chuck Bernstein for council. He certainly does not want to raise the UUT.

Chuck is along with Russ Peterson are the only candidate to oppose the MenloGateway projec.

He supports No On Measure T effort and he is the only candidate who 3 years ago got up and pleaded with the council not to raise the pension benefits from 2% to 2.6%


Posted by Morris Brown, a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Oct 14, 2010 at 5:10 am

Trying to stick Chuck Bernstein with being a T-party stooge is being promoted by Gail Slocum who though e-mails in the Willows has been on a rampage. The Dirty tricks are now out there.

Gail should be ashamed of herself.

Whatever the reasons why Gail has decided to resort to such tactics, I cannot be certain, but this is really beneath what should be fair play.

Gail has joined the Bohannon development team in promoting the Menlo Gateway project. Chuck is against the project. Gail used to have a reasonable approach to land use. She used the slogan Measured Growth for Menlo Park when she ran for council. Look at her famous ruler she passed out during that campaign.

Web Link

Just let me add, Gail is a strong advocate along with Kelly for No on L, the pension reform. She is wrong on that issue also. Enough of her in this campaign.



morris brown


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Oct 14, 2010 at 7:53 am

I think that the Menlo Park voters are smart enough to realize how important fiscal conservatism and financial acumen are to the future of their city and that not everyone who has these traits also harbors extreme right wing values. And that they will judge candidates by the track record of the candidates and not by whomever has chosen to endorse those candidates.


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 14, 2010 at 7:54 am

Morris Brown: Gail would never be ashamed of herself for playing dirty politics. [Portion removed, personal attack.]

Anyone associated with her should also be tagged as such. I would question the integrity of the candidates she is supporting.

Everyone knows Robinson has anger management issues.[Portion removed, personal attack.]

Keith says she supports Measure L but wants to raise the UUT to balance the budget, so voters should be aware of her thought process when it comes to "fiscal responsibility" and her definition of it.

Cline is lying low because he's not sure which way the political wind is blowing-- i.e. who's going to win. Given the transparency issues that faced Cline, as Mayor, I'd say that his integrity is questionable. I guess, using the Mayor's "title" to campaign has its advantages.

All the candidates are smart, but the two I'm supporting-- Ohtaki and Bernstein-- also have integrity.


Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Oct 14, 2010 at 9:46 am

Gail Slocum is so wrong on the issues and the candidates in this election that she has done something that no one else has been able to do and that is to unite two political factions in Menlo Park who have traditionally been at odds with each other.

We really need to retire Robinson and Cline and not give Gail's understudy Kirstin Keith a chance to cause further economic chaos in our city.

Enough is enough. We need to make Gail Slocum irrelevant and Menlo Park viable by shunning her candidates.


Posted by Quality of Lifer, a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Oct 14, 2010 at 10:10 am

I think Gail is struggling to maintain some relevance in Menlo Par and panicking about Heyward's likely departure, now that half the residentialists split with her and joined forces for fiscal responsibility.

She's a Menlo Park anachronism.


Posted by Andy Cohen, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 14, 2010 at 10:22 am

Apparently my last entry has been deleted by the Almanac, in which I criticized Slocum, Fergusson, and Robinson for their links to the developer in the Menlo Gateway, Measure T debate. I can think of no basis for that having been done unless the Editor is acting in a political manner as well. Could he be playing favorites because he too supports the project? As I said, follow the money.

a


Posted by Renee Batti, news editor of The Almanac
on Oct 14, 2010 at 10:54 am

Renee Batti is a registered user.

For the record, The Almanac didn't delete Andy Cohen's post. He posted the comment in another thread.


Posted by serial voter, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 14, 2010 at 11:00 am

interesting, your post is somewhat incoherent (who wrote it for you?) but I infer that you are a fan of Gail Slocum? However, the only "baseless negative bashing" I see is coming from her!

I have yet to run into anyone in Menlo Park who identifies with the tea party. But Gail knows how to smear the dirt. And, unfortunately, it works. Anyone remember the 2006 toilet flyer that effectively elected Rich and Heyward?

There is apparent corruption in our current council, and I applaud Andy for pointing it out. Our city should not be sold to the highest bidder. Doing so is not pro-growth; it is shortsighted and ultimately disastrous to our city's best interests.


Posted by Gail Slocum, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 14, 2010 at 11:25 am

I would like to respond.

First, so you can see it for yourselves the Website for the San Mateo Chapter of the Tea Party can be found at Web Link. I've saved a screen shot as of this past weekend which I have provided to the Almanac and others who inquired.

That website, which also sells tee shirts that say "Tea Party Patriots," supports far more than the issues this Almanac article mentions, including on Propositions that will have far reaching environmental and social impacts. It is a very conservative Republican site - endorsing all the top of ticket GOP candidates.

The passing statement made about this Tea Party endorsement in my email (which primarily went to Democratic and environmental lists) was factually correct. No one disputes that.

All but two lines of my long email alert focused on the fact that the Democratic Party and the Sierra Club have endorsed the Robinson, Keith and Cline, and described their backgrounds and how to get involved. It includes *one* sentence stating that the three other Council candidates were in fact supported by the Tea Party group that's active in our county. Again, no one disputes these as being anything but accurate, factual statements.

Apparently Peterson and Ohtaki are not turning away the Tea Party endorsement, as is their right.

However, I am pleased to hear that Chuck Bernstein, a Democrat himself, is distancing himself from this Tea Party endorsement. I would suggest, Chuck, that you contact the MyLibertySanMateo organization and ask them to remove you from their website's endorsement list. I would be happy to send an update to my lists once you do.

To Hank: Yes, as you know, it is true that I was once a registered Republican. But I was always of the moderate to liberal "Pete McCloskey" variety (pro choice, pro-environmental protection but fiscally conservative) - never a hard core Republican. I finally switched to become a Democrat back in 1992 when the Religious Right completed its take-over of the Party aparatus. The Tea Party is just the latest incarnation of why I re-registered 18 years ago. I feel like the GOP left me (and many others of us)... And even Pete McCloskey finally became a Democrat a few years ago after the whole Pombo/McNerney Congressional race where Pete challenged corrupt Pombo in the primary. I can honestly say that "some of my best friends are (still) Republicans," and I am grateful for those moderates who have remained on the inside to keep seeking to get the GOP to change (e.g. on pro-choice issues). I simply got tired of beating my head against a brick wall...

Let there be no mistake: I have met with and respect all of the candidates for Menlo Park City Council. However, there are indeed important differences among them.

However people decide to vote - they should have the facts. On that I am sure we can all agree.

Gail Slocum


Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Oct 14, 2010 at 11:43 am

[Post removed; personal attack.]


Posted by Patti Fry, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 14, 2010 at 12:50 pm

To "interesting" and others - I am a very long-time Democrat and conservationist who supports planned growth and fiscal responsibility. I write only my own comments.

While I have worked well for many years with nearly all of those named in this thread, I have to agree that there seems to be a desperate and ridiculous attempt to paint me and some of the Council candidates as tea baggers. Those who have done so know better. I find this behavior far below the level of mutual respect our community deserves.

Yes, facts are important. What I would suggest is that there be some additional focus on Menlo Gateway and why its proponents have made so many incorrect statements about it (including on the ballot statement). Did they not read or understand the final agreement and related official city documents?

Further, why are two of the most vocal proponents of measure T not disclosing professional ties that many of us would consider relevant facts in the discussion:

Why is Gail Slocum, who helped launch PG&E's ClimateSmart program, pushing measure T so relentlessly without ever mentioning that her employer will be a financial and public relations beneficiary of the project?

Why does Chuck Kinney never mention that he has been an employee of Bohannon for the past several years? And why does he, a landscape architect, as well as Kirsten Keith, a planning commissioner, repeat misleading information that the project would create acres of landscaped open space? Just try to find it between the buildings and along the shoulders of Marsh and Bayfront Expressway!

BTW - I do not believe that "corruption" is an appropriate description of any Councilmembers' position or actions on T or the project. The problem is simple - lousy management of a lousy negotiation process; that's how they got a lousy deal.


Posted by serial voter, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 14, 2010 at 12:59 pm

Just curious, Gail, what motivated you to start searching through tea party pages in search of endorsements? Because when I google "tea party" and "san mateo" I get pages and pages of hits, and the first tea party reference to the My Liberty site is this thread! There are many other tea parties, or so it seems, in San Mateo.

Second, what's to stop me from starting a white supremacist website, for example, that endorses your candidates. Would they have sought that endorsement? Of course not! (One must wonder, in fact, if you have anything to do with the My Liberty endorsements.)

Based on your behavior, Gail, I see your Republican heritage can be traced right back to Dick Nixon. Your kind of politics, eh? [Portion removed, personal attack.]


Posted by frugal, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 14, 2010 at 1:07 pm

[Post removed; personal attacks violate terms of use.]


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 14, 2010 at 1:31 pm

Patti Fry: Thanks for unearthing these conflicts of interest. Too bad the Almanac doesn't have the conviction to do a story about that. As they say in politics, "follow the money." This isn't about Bohannon per se but about Gail and PG&E being the beneficiary of the Menlo Gateway project, as well as, the other conflicts you mention.

The hypocritical position of hating big businesses and hiding the truth of who will benefit (a HUGE business) is an integrity issue, in my opinion. Hopefully, integrity will count for something! As I've said before, all the candidates are "smart," but Ohtaki and Bernstein also have integrity.

Thanks for shining a light on these conflicts and why the candidates Slocum supports should not be on the City Council-- particularly the two incumbents. BOOT OUT THE INCUMBENTS!


Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Oct 14, 2010 at 1:46 pm

Gail,

This story sure backfired on you. I have never seen more negative albeit truthful comments about you, your motives and your extremism.


Posted by Left wing voter, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 14, 2010 at 1:51 pm

Gail, you should be ashame of yourself, why don't you have a full disclosure on your candidates about their links and ties to the labor unions. Ferguson had 45% of donation come from various unions last time around and then to give the employees a 35% pension increase two months later was just unethical. You should not be "mystified" as you wrote to the Daily Post about their endorsement to Bernstein and Ohtaki, your golden boy Robinson just don't know Math facts.[Portion removed; personal attack.]


Posted by Council Watcher, a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
on Oct 14, 2010 at 2:29 pm

[Post deleted, terms of use.]


Posted by Gail Slocum, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 14, 2010 at 3:48 pm

Patti

First, there is absolutely no conflict of interest or financial gain for me on Measure T at all.

The Climate Smart program is a non-profit charity run through PG&E under which PG&E does not get to keep a dime. Onehundred percent of the payments go to greenhouse gas reduction projects in California, like putting redwood forests already slated for looging unto permanent conservation easements instead, and installing anaerobin methane capture technologies over open manure ponds at many of California's 1,200 dairies.

There is no financial benefit at ALL to PG&E or to me from the MenloGateway project. Please get your facts straight.

It is in Menlo Park's interest to zero out the carbon emissions that LEED Gold design still can't engineer out of the energy and water use of those buildings if built. It just happens that the CLimateSmart program has the highest quality, real, additional and independentlycertified carbon offsets and for GHG reducrtion projects that are based only in California. If there is another program that has similar rigorous criteria, Bohannon can susbstitute for it under the Development Agreement. But you should already know that.

I think you just have trouble with the fact that I have found that, on balance, Menlo Gateway's impacts (after mitigation) are far outwieghed by its benefits.

Second -- I made no effort to "paint you" as having anything to do with the Tea Party, and only referenced the "opponents" as having been endorsed by this Tea Party San MAteo Chapter.

We now know thanks to Almanac reporting that two of them have accepted that endorsement. I don't know what kind of help their campaigns are getting from those activists... And I repeat, I am pleased to hear that CHuck Bernstein does not want to list this endorsement. If Chuck Bernstein contacts the MyLiberty group and gets his name removed as an endorsee too, I am willing to send an email to my lists updating them to say that.

Gail



Posted by Gail Slocum, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 14, 2010 at 3:55 pm

Dear Serial Voter:

Two conservative Republican friends of mine first pointed the MyLibertySanMateo endorsements out to me. They had been concerned because it originally endorsed Don Horsly. Horsly got that changed quick.

I didn't have to go looking for anything having to do with the Tea Party myself on Google, others brought it to my attention.

But it is a real organization.

Gail


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Oct 14, 2010 at 4:01 pm

Gail Slocum says,

"It is a very conservative Republican site - endorsing all the top of ticket GOP candidates."

I am a Democrat, Jack Hickey and Fred Graham are Libertarians

The San Mateo Chapter of the Tea Party endorsed all three of us.


Posted by Council Watcher, a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
on Oct 14, 2010 at 4:08 pm

Ms. Slocum,

I will bet you $100 that Heyward Robinson does not get re-elected. Loser makes a $100 contribution in the name of the winner to the San Mateo County Central Committee of the winner.

If you agree to this I will contact you through your home e-mail to finalize the details.


Posted by callie, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 14, 2010 at 5:58 pm

What's this "tea party"stuff?
I have heard that the Liberty Tea Party was created by local non-tea-party politicians to discredit people and issues they don't like. They assume that calling someone "tea party" is the kiss of death.

it is easy to create a tea party website, even with all the links. The Tea Party is obviously a decentralized unmonitored operation.

Callie


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 14, 2010 at 6:32 pm

Gail Slocum: With all the gibberish you've provided on this forum, the bottom line is that none of the candidates sought this endorsement, and you want to make it look like they did so that your candidates get elected.

Your continuing to participate in polarizing politics is exactly what Menlo Park does NOT need. Therefore, should Menlo Park voters infer that the three candidates you support are also polarizing? With the incumbents, it sure seems that way, especially with Robinson, who is emotionally and psychologically unfit to be in public office. Their track record is so bad that they can't even justify lawn signs that ask voters to "re-elect" them. They've done enough damage to Menlo Park!

Politics is not a spectator sport. There are serious issues that must be resolved. I hope Menlo Park voters see through this and vote for people with integrity and expertise in finance and business.


Posted by 1ndependent, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 14, 2010 at 6:51 pm

Jeez, I'm no Gail Slocum fan (GS: friendly recommendation- drop the opposition to L; the tide has turned), but this petty name-calling tells you more about the true nature of Chuck's Bunch than anything. More to the point, do you guys really think this is the way to win? I mean, of the 5,961 people who voted for Heyward in 2006, how many of them do you think even know who Gail is, much less read the comments on this blog? It seems like a smoke-screen to distract from Chuck's toxic position on development (namely, that one-story is where it's at, vacant parcels be damned).


Posted by serial voter, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 14, 2010 at 6:58 pm

If you think this is "petty name-calling," you obviously have not seen the vicious hit pieces against Chuck that Bohannon has just unleashed. They make Gail's allegation look like sandbox scuffles.

It is really too bad that the election politics are so nasty -- all the candidates are well-meaning people who are essentially volunteering for the job. Too bad that they can't be judged on their merits, but there is big money riding on the outcome of this race.

I voted for Heyward in 2006. So did a lot of people. Remember those nasty union pieces that put Heyward and Rich over the top? But he has shown himself unfit to govern.

"Chuck's toxic position on development (namely, that one-story is where it's at, vacant parcels be damned)."

Another toxic lie. In the future, if you are going to make such allegations, how about substantiating them? If you can't do that, you are no better than the rest of the dirty tricksters.


Posted by Outside Looking In, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 14, 2010 at 7:23 pm

Serial Voter: I couldn't agree with you more that Robinson "has shown himself unfit to govern." Thanks for continuing to point this out!

If Menlo Park wants positive change without polarizing partisan politics, boot out the incumbents or continue to have them cozying up to the unions. Remember, politics is not a spectator sport!


Posted by Real Tea, a resident of another community
on Oct 14, 2010 at 7:35 pm

My Liberty has been around longer than a year. The directors are listed on the website; they can all be contacted and spoken to in person and none of them resemble Gail Slocum. Kinda hard to fake that.


Posted by Chronic flatulence, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 14, 2010 at 9:30 pm

[Post removed; terms of use.]


Posted by Hank Lawence, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Oct 15, 2010 at 6:54 am

[Post removed; stick to the topic]


Posted by Patti Fry, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 15, 2010 at 10:45 am

I have been informed that Kirsten Keith has removed Chuck Kinney's misleading message from her campaign website. Good for her.


Posted by huh?, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 15, 2010 at 11:16 am

What "misleading message" did did Kirsten Keith have on her website before?


Posted by John Woodell, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 16, 2010 at 11:34 am

On Oct 14, Patti wrote,

"... why does ... Kirsten Keith, a planning commissioner, repeat misleading information that the project would create acres of landscaped open space?"

I sent the following email,

"I've never heard this from Kirsten. I did post a letter from Chuck Kinney on our site, but I removed the links to it some time ago, and I just deleted the page completely. The analytics indicate that only two people looked at it recently, on Oct 13. That may have been you. If so, I have no idea how you found it."

Based on my brief correspondence with Patti, the reference to "acres of landscaped open space" may be misleading, but there are plenty of resources available for folks that want to learn more.


Posted by John Woodell, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Oct 16, 2010 at 12:04 pm

The Menlo Gateway website provides more information on this topic,

"Menlo Gateway will return more of the existing industrial area to open space, providing approximately four acres of open space."

Web Link


Posted by serial voter, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 16, 2010 at 1:44 pm

Linking to Bohannon's site does not provide much factual information, only hype.

Here is a better link: Web Link

"The Bohannon Office/Hotel creates or dedicates no public open space. The project creates 40 acres of development on 16 acres of private property. The developer is counting undeveloped footprint on private land as "open space."

Here's the site map for the "Independence" site. Web Link The only non-developed portion of this site is the swimming pool and the driveway.

Here's the site map for the "Constitution" site. Web Link The developer is counting surface parking, surface parking put in landscape reserve and other undeveloped portions of the lot footprint on private land. All of the "open space" on this site lies directly beneath high-tension electrical lines."

The illustrations on Bohannon's site simply bear no relation to reality.


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