Culinary institute for Democrats

Are Barona’s free meals food for thought for state schools chief Tom Torlakson?
  • Are Barona’s free meals food for thought for state schools chief Tom Torlakson?

Democratic governor Jerry Brown, on an apparent easy course to reelection this year, last week bagged a $10,000 campaign contribution from San Diego’s Qualcomm, founded by billionaire Barack Obama–backer Irwin Jacobs. Not much more surprising is a $27,200 donation from onetime Gray Davis backer and Netflix founder Reed Hastings, whose House of Cards political drama portrays fictional House Democrat Kevin Spacey in a sinister light. ...

The Barona Resort, Casino, and Culinary Institute played host to a bevy of well-fed California politicos during the final three months of last year, according to a recently filed disclosure. Tom Torlakson, the state superintendent of public instruction, stopped by on October 24 for a meal reportedly valued at $25.78. His fellow Democrat, senate pro tem Darrell Steinberg, had $43.50 worth of food and drink on November 7. His assistant Jean-Paul Buchanan, who chowed down in the same amount, joined him. Then there was Mike Gipson, a Democratic Assembly candidate, currently on the Carson City Council, who makes $1622.48 a month, according to the city website. Gipson got a meal at Barona worth $31.57.

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