New allegations against San Diego county clerk

LGBT leaders oppose Dronenburg due to his gay-marriage stance

Charles LiMandri (from
  • Charles LiMandri (from

County clerk Ernest Dronenburg remains a target for those who wish to unseat him for petitioning the state supreme court to reconsider their decision to overturn the same-sex marriage ban, also known as Prop 8.

Dronenburg's challenge sparked outrage from supporters of marriage equality. That spark seems to have caught fire.

On Tuesday, January 28, LGBT leaders in San Diego will call for Dronenburg's resignation amid revelations of abuse of power.

“This press conference is not being held to make the case that Dronenburg abused his office, we already know he did,” was the statement from the group's spokesperson, Sean Sala. “This conference is being held to reveal new revelations of abuse and to call for him to either resign or not seek reelection at all. New content on his involvement has been uncovered.”

Sala has spent months scouring through public records requests and compiling new information on what prompted Dronenburg to challenge the court's ruling and into his relationship with Prop 8 proponent and attorney for the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, Charles LiMandri.

An October 14 letter from the Fair Political Practices Commission lays out the timeline of Dronenburg's decision and his relationship with LiMandri. Shortly after the Supreme Court's decision, Dronenburg asked the county to provide legal representation needed to file a writ of mandate requesting that the state hold off on issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The county declined his request. Dronenburg then turned to LiMandri, the longtime opponent of same-sex marriage.

LiMandri promised to file the writ at no cost to the city, instead donating $11,240 in legal work in exchange for an agreement that, if victorious, LiMandri would keep any legal fees awarded in the case.

The legal challenge didn't last long: just two weeks after filing the writ, Dronenburg pulled out because another case had been filed.

"The questions I asked are also a part of the [Hollingsworth v. O’Connell and Brown case]," said Dronenberg. "At this point my case could be considered duplicative and slow the process. We need to be able to remove the uncertainty in this area as soon as possible. Given the fact the Hollingsworth [case] is now under review, I cannot comment further.”

"I submitted public records requests for his schedule and other communications and then delved into the actual case he filed to the CA Supreme Court and found.... let's just say many, many things that the media never covered about his supposed 'clarification of the law,'” said Sala.

Sala and LGBT leaders will hold a press conference in front of the County Administration Building on Tuesday, January 28th at 12:00pm.

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