Ex-San Diego city councilman Carl DeMaio, who got into the radio talk-show business following his defeat by Democratic incumbent Scott Peters in a bitter 2016 La Jolla congressional race, is out raising money to turn back governor Jerry Brown’s gasoline-tax hike. “We are building a broad-based coalition, people are just fed up,” DeMaio told Fox News in April. “This is rushed through and will hit working families pretty hard. It will cost an extra $300 to $500 per driver every year…. This is the final straw.”
Target number one for DeMaio and fellow radio talkers John and Ken of L.A. is a recall of Orange County Democratic state senator Josh Newman, a vote in favor of the tax increase. After Brown signed Senate Bill 117 last week, extending the time for signature drives, the tax foes, who say they already have enough valid signatures to trigger the recall, went to court to challenge the delay.
Meantime, DeMaio and company have been ramping up for a statewide referendum to repeal the gas tax. So far this year, DeMaio’s state political committee, known as Reform California, has collected a total of $126,977, with the largest single donation of $10,000 provided by the New Car Dealers Association PAC of San Diego on June 29. Second came Rancho Santa Fe’s John H. Cox, a Republican who has announced a bid for governor, with $2500. Phil’s BBQ kicked in the same.