While tourist industry advocates of San Diego’s Measure C, the proposition to hike hotel taxes for expansion of the convention center and homeless relief, inch towards a multi-million-dollar funding goal, Michael McConnell is spending big on Facebook to kill the measure. The former La Jolla coin shop owner and self-styled homeless advocate spent $19,318 during the week between January 28 and February 3 on a series of messages attacking C, according to Facebook’s political transparency page. “With no limits on administrative costs, Measure C is too risky for San Diego taxpayers,” says the copy.
The message accompanies a video in which a stern-voiced announcer intones, “Measure C is riddled with loopholes, no limits on administrative or overhead costs, unlimited dollars wasted on bureaucracy, no guarantees that money is spent the right way. The more we learn, the riskier measure C looks.”
Another McConnell message features a female announcer saying, “Voter Alert, Measure C authorizes two billion dollars in bonds that could leave San Diegans on the hook for decades.”
During the same period, the Yes on C committee spent only marginally more than McConnell, $20,569, to portray the measure as a boon for conventions and homelessness relief. They feature Father Joe Carroll, the retired homeless shelter honcho, who says in a video, “Measure C will provide urgent funding for housing and mental health services for our neighbors in need.”
The pro-C advertisements were geared primarily to voters under 44. McConnell’s arguments, on the other hand, were shown to an older crowd, between 45 and 65-plus years of age, according to demographic information regarding ad placement provided by Facebook.
The San Diego Gun Owners’ political action committee is using Facebook to obliquely target Assembly Democrat and San Diego mayoral hopeful Todd Gloria. “How long will we allow people like this to lead our communities? People that pass laws that DON’T affect criminals, only responsible, law-abiding gun owners?” says the caption on a photo of Gloria speaking at a gun control rally. The cost of the weeklong buy, exhibited primarily to males over 55, was $2527 according to Facebook’s information.
Cops pay $15,000
Lobbyist Mason Herron of Edgewater Strategies has been making the rounds of San Diego city council offices to oppose a ballot measure relating to police department oversight, says an amended disclosure report for 2019’s third quarter. His client, the San Diego Police Officers Association, paid $15,000 for the firm’s services.
Half-million and counting
San Diego’s self-funding front runner among this year’s California primary contenders is Sara Jacobs, a granddaughter of Qualcomm billionaire Irwin Jacobs. A January 31 federal disclosure filing shows that Democrat Jacobs, who lists her occupation as Scholar in Residence at the University of San Diego’s Kroc School of Peace Studies, has so far given $531,554 to her campaign to replace departing 53rd District House member the well-traveled Susan Davis. Jacobs made her single most significant donation, $500,000, on December 10, per the disclosure.
After the federal Securities & Exchange Commission filed suit on August 28 of last year against San Diego eatery diva Gina Champion-Cain for allegedly stealing $300 million from local investors, political campaigns she backed had varying responses. Assembly Democrat Todd Gloria, a mayoral candidate, refunded $2300 to Champion-Cain and $2100 to her husband Steven Cain on August 29, filings show. City councilman Chris Ward, running to replace Gloria in the Assembly, took until November 19 to return Champion-Cain’s $1000 donation.
City council candidate Noli Zosa, proprietor of Dirty Birds, a chain of local restaurants, gave back $600 from Champion-Cain on September 9.
County Supervisor Dianne Jacob, leaving office at the end of this year due to term limits, is still sitting on $495,400 in leftover 2016 reelection funds, a January 11 disclosure shows.
Barona chow-down Republican state Senator Brian Jones, running to replace resigned House member Duncan Hunter in next month’s California primary, took time off from the rigors of the campaign trail to steal into the Barona casino last November 12 with wife Heather. The couple chowed down on a free meal provided by the tribe worth $303.49, according to a January 23 disclosure report covering the final three months of last year.
Other gratis dinner recipients from Barona the same day included Assembly Republicans Randy Voepel, Jim Patterson, Tom Lackey, Kevin Kiley, Bill Brough, Steven Choi, Tyler Diep, Devon Mathis, Vince Fong, and Melissa Melendez ($151.75 each), along with Assembly GOP leader Marie Waldron and husband Steve ($303.49). Melendez chief of staff Jared Yoshiki, Republican state senator Scott Wilk, and Senate GOP leader Shannon Grove also partook of the tribe’s hospitality at $151.75 apiece, according to the filing. Meanwhile, Kristy MacDougall, district coordinator for Marie Waldron, stopped off at the Rainbow Oaks Restaurant in Fallbrook on November 14 for a free lunch worth $22 from cellphone giant AT&T.