Little-known San Diego election facts

Prop 6 suit, the Campa-Najjar name, the right Juan and the left Juan

Campa-Najjar campaign headquarters
  • Campa-Najjar campaign headquarters

Proposition 6 may not get the response at the ballot box its supporters were hoping for. Asking voters to reduce what they have to pay for gas was a sure bet, but state Attorney General Xavier Becerra wrote the initiative's title to “Eliminates Certain Road Repair and Transportation Funding.”

Campa-Najjar grassroots support in El Cajon

Campa-Najjar grassroots support in El Cajon

The Yes on 6 Campaign responded to Becerra’s revision in a press release, “If you steal our gas tax funds and then steal our votes by lying to us on our election ballots when we seek to repeal the tax, we will RECALL you from office!”

A campaign committee has been filed, the first step toward a recall. Its title is “Recall Xavier Becerra for Defrauding Voters on Prop 6 the Gas Tax Repeal Initiative.”

The 2015 Instagram post

The 2015 Instagram post

In the 50th Congressional district voters are faced with a choice between indicted incumbent Duncan Hunter (who is defending himself against charges he misused campaign money) and challenger Ammar Campa-Najjar, who’s waging a strong campaign.

Campa-Najjar has come under scrutiny for an Instagram post he made on June 21, 2015. It’s a heartfelt expression of pride for his father on Father’s Day.

He wrote about being proud to share his father’s name. His father’s name Yasser was his middle name for most of his life. But earlier this year, as he was campaigning for votes, he went to the Superior Court of California to change his middle name from Yasser to Joseph.

He also modified his last name, adding his mother’s Spanish name “Campa.” So Ammar Yasser Najjar became Ammar Joseph Campa-Najjar.

In the Instagram post Campa-Najjar stated, “In the eyes of many, Yasser Mohammad Alnajjar is the son of a legend.” The legend he referred to was his terrorist grandfather.

The Times of Israel reported Muhammad Yousef al-Najjar was “a senior member of the Palestinian terrorist group Black September that murdered 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics...Najjar was assassinated in Beirut by an Israeli commando force in 1973.”

(The mission to assassinate Najjar and other Munich terrorists was depicted in Steven Spielberg’s 2005 film Munich.)

Though Campa-Najjar has reportedly disavowed his grandfather and the use of violence to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, his new middle name Joseph is the English version of his grandfather’s middle name Yousef.

Congressman Hunter’s campaign has tried to paint Campa-Najjar as a terrorist-sympathizer and distributed a letter from three retired Marine generals calling him a “national security risk.”

Campa-Najjar responded, “I am not a security threat. Duncan Hunter is, however. Due to his criminal indictment, excessive drinking, infidelity and financial instability, [he] would not be eligible for a security clearance.”

In the 51st Congressional District, Juan Vargas and Juan Hidalgo share more in common than their first names. They are both natives of National City. In the June 5 primary election, four Juans were in the race. Hidalgo claims to be the “right Juan.” Would that make Vargas the “left Juan?”

Omar Qudrat is challenging Congressman Scott Peters in the 52nd District. If he wins he would be the first Muslim Republican member of Congress. A natural-born American of Afghan extraction, Qudrat worked for the United States government overseas prosecuting terrorists.

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An amusing set of stories about the 2018 mid-term elections in San Diego. I feel certain that "left" Juan Vargas has secured re-election to his seat in Congress, even though "the right Juan" is funny wordplay. Surely Ammar Campa-Najjar's brilliant economical riposte, "I am not a security risk," to Drunken Hunter's scurrilous falsehoods, ranks with another famous declarative statement from presidential candidate Richard Nixon, who said, "I am not a crook." And Carl De Maio can always be counted on for dramatic over-reaction. I mean, we intend to vote Yes on Prop 6 to get that regressive gas tax rolled back, but recall heroic California Attorney General Xavier Becerra? No way.

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