Out-of-town money cascades into supervisor race

Hit pieces funded by N.Y. labor, drunk driver, and MDs lobby

Lincoln Club hit piece on Fletcher from 2013
  • Lincoln Club hit piece on Fletcher from 2013

Whether settling past scores or anticipating future favorable votes from the county board of supervisors, a host of well-heeled special interests funded from outside county borders are pouring big money into the race to replace 4th District Republican Ron Roberts.

Fletcher and his former boss Paul Jacobs

Fletcher and his former boss Paul Jacobs

Latest to show its hand is the Lincoln Club of San Diego County, which is aiming to take out its longtime nemesis, ex-Republican, one-time independent, and current Democrat Nathan Fletcher, according to a May 15 filing with the registrar of voters.

Ex-assemblyman Martin Garrick gave $10,000 to Lincoln Club

Ex-assemblyman Martin Garrick gave $10,000 to Lincoln Club

On May 10, the GOP club funneled $40,000 to a political fund it runs called Job Creators for a Strong Economy, which four days later spent $26,848 on an anti-Fletcher hit piece, per its disclosure.

Lori Saldaña, Fletcher's opponent, favors single-payer health care. The California Medical Association gave $15K to a pro-Fletcher committee.

Lori Saldaña, Fletcher's opponent, favors single-payer health care. The California Medical Association gave $15K to a pro-Fletcher committee.

When Fletcher mounted his second losing effort for San Diego mayor back in October 2013, the club's series of attacks on his then-employer Qualcomm regarding Fletcher's alleged make-work executive gig drew a pained response the cell-phone chip firm's then-chairman Paul Jacobs.

"I was outraged to learn that the Lincoln Club of San Diego – a supposedly pro-business political group – would fund a political hit piece that unfairly and incorrectly attacks one of San Diego’s largest employers," blasted Jacobs.

"Is the Lincoln Club so desperate and out of constructive ideas that they are resorting to attacks on private employers, forsaking their supposed principles and lying to serve a political agenda?"

"I demand a full apology and a retraction of this slanderous attack on our company and its more than 13,000 local employees."

No apology was forthcoming, and Jacobs, who has since left the board of Qualcomm, founded by his father, soon gave up the battle.

By funneling its money through its so-called job creators committee, the Lincoln Club avoids direct disclosure of the cash behind its Fletcher attacks, but the club's separate fund filing yields a bevy of sources.

They include a total of $20,000 from New York City-based Rancho Guejito,the vast North County expanse of real estate owned by sprawl-minded Manhattan heiress Theodate Coates.

Martin Garrick, the ex-GOP Assemblyman, and San Diego county real estate guru best known for leading police on a chase into the Capitol garage before his drunk driving arrest in 2011, came up with $10,000, as did Mission Valley developer Tom Sudberry and the Sycuan gambling tribe.

Meanwhile, a labor union-financed, pro-Fletcher committee aiming its fire at rival Democrat Lori Saldaña picked up $15,000 on May 14 from the Sacramento-based California Medical Association Independent Expenditure Committee, which records show usually spends its money on state races.

That includes recently sinking $23,100 into an attack on the gubernatorial bid of Democratic state Treasurer John Chiang, a proponent of so-called single-payer health care that is bitterly opposed by the doctor and hospital-funded group. Saldaña has expressed support for single-payer proposals. Fletcher's wife, Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, is an Assembly Democrat. Additionally, Manhattan-based hotel workers union Unite Here came up with $50,000 for the Saldana attacks May 15, reports show.

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You gotta love election years. The GOP Lincoln Club "Job Creators" fund wants to ensure that Fletcher-Gonzalez is down and out of work. "Rancho Guejito" PAC money is based in NYC. One over-exuberant ex-GOP Assemblyman goes after another former GOP fellow-traveller, Fletcher-Gonzalez, maybe because F-G's having a political identity crisis and calling himself a Democrat. Democrat Lori Saldana, a union member, is being targeted by labor unions. One answer to this Supervisorial craziness is "none of the above," and filling in the oval next to the name Omar Passons.

Just opened up my mailbox, I live in a condo and WOW! Seriously, this mail is unbelievable. All funded by special interests going after one another. I am all in with Omar Passons and anyone living in D4 Sups seat needs to be paying close attention to this race. Omar Passons middle name is "integrity" and it's an honor to support him. OMAR PASSONS!

I am drowning in huge colorful mailings about Mr. Fletcher. Fletcher bad, Fletcher good and so on. Where's the money coming from? is my first question. Thanks for telling my why my mail carrier is out with an injury and I'm not getting my supermarket fliers.

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