Josh Becker zooms ahead in cash raised

Menlo Park venture capitalist widens lead over Kishimoto, Gordon in Assembly race

Spurred by hefty contributions from entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and technologists, Josh Becker has taken a commanding fundraising lead over fellow Democrats Yoriko Kishimoto and Rich Gordon in the race for Ira Ruskin's seat in the 21st Assembly District.

Becker, a venture capitalist who focuses on green technology, raised $110,211 between Jan. 1 and March 17, new campaign finance data shows. Kishimoto and Gordon raised $32,897 and $28,629 over the same period, respectively.

Becker's strong fundraising in the latest reporting period further widened his lead over Kishimoto and Gordon. His ending cash is listed at $224,099, compared to Kishimoto's $92,457 and Gordon's $82,516.

The three will face off in the Democratic primary elections in June. The winner will be heavily favored to replace Ruskin, who is termed out at the end of this year.

Becker's campaign chest was greatly bolstered by sizeable contributions from high-tech executives, including officials from Google, Cisco, Facebook and HP. The Menlo Park resident also received a flurry of quadruple-digit contributions from dozens of venture capitalists, lawyers and technologists, including ones his venture-capital firm, New Cycle Capital, has invested in.

Though most of his support came from outside Palo Alto, Becker also received $2,000 from local developer Jim Baer and $500 from former Palo Alto Mayor Gary Fazzino.

Kishimoto, who served on the Palo Alto City Council for eight years before reaching her term limit last year, earned the bulk of her support from past and present Palo Alto officials, neighborhood leaders, environmentalists and family members. She also loaned $20,000 to her campaign just before the reporting deadline.

Gordon, a San Mateo County supervisor, received much of his support from Silicon Valley attorneys, construction companies and labor unions. Gordon also received $3,900 in contributions from Assemblywoman Fiona Ma's campaign and from the Bay Area Municipal Elections Committee.

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Like this comment
Posted by Gunther Steinberg
a resident of Portola Valley: Ladera
on Mar 23, 2010 at 1:24 pm

"Josh Becker zooms ahead in cash raised
Menlo Park venture capitalist widens lead over Kishimoto, Gordon in Assembly race"

Most people are disturbed about the effect of money in politics, especially in Washington DC, but like most media, the Almanac judges who is ahead in a political contest not by their stand or program, but by who has raised the most money,
Is that really the way to judge a person's fitness for an office?

In the governor's primary race, the same criterion is being used by the media. What impresses me is that someone is trying to buy a chance to run for an office and is supplementing their ample personal wealth with purely negative ads. Does that make them suitable for the office? NO !

When the media use campaign wealth as a criterion, they tend to influence a lot of potential, unthinking voters that this is a good thing. - It is actually the worst way the media can do their job. No analysis of what someone stands for. Just lazy reporting.

Like this comment
Posted by Money Means Nothing
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Mar 23, 2010 at 3:14 pm

Hear, hear Gunther. In addition to big money, Becker has no experience. Career politicians have their flaws but, neither Gordon or Kishimoto are career politicians. They are grass roots civic leaders who have spent time in the trenches, listening to people and making changes for the good for their constituents. Wealthy, successful Silicon Valley entrepreneurs who reach this description don't have the skills or temperament to slog through the slow turning wheels of government. Remember how many of these people quit the Clinton administration within 6 to 12 months.

Becker = Poizner.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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