Vanguard Commentary: Schools and the 8th Assembly Race

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SCHOOLS

Two separate items of interest in the news this week. We’ll start with schools because it is amazingly what is on everyone’s mind. I say amazingly because flashing back to last October that was about the last thing anyone wanted to talk about on this blog. Now it is virtually all people are interested in, even with a looming City Council election which is usually the creme de la creme of Davis politics.

The school board decision is a very interesting decision because it is the outcome that I preferred–I did not want Emerson to close and yet in many ways I think the decision is problematic at best.

It is my hope that the wrath does not shift to Boardmembers Tim Taylor and Gina Daleiden on this. They both voted against the motion primarily not because they opposed keeping Emerson open, but rather because all of the options–school closings, reconfigurations, program and teacher cuts–needed to be on the table at the same time. And moreover, if they were not going to close the schools and reconfigure the secondary program, there needed to be concurrent cuts proposed so that they knew where the money was coming from that they needed to balance the budget.

Tim Taylor called this motion financially irresponsible.

Now I think there are good educational reasons to keep Emerson open, but then again I felt there were good educational reasons to keep Valley Oak open–and two of the members who voted to close Valley Oak, the two strongest proponents of that closing, led the way to keep Emerson open.

With this decision, the April 17 board meeting is looming large because it is at that meeting that the board will need to once again identify more than $4 million in cuts. With already more than 100 teachers and librarians receiving pink slips, we can only look on in horror wondering what next.

We wanted the school to remain open, I just hope we don’t end up regretting that decision down the line. The district and board face some very tough choices in the coming weeks, we will have to see just how bad this decision ends up looking. In the meantime, parents of all junior high students and even a lot of high school students probably rested a bit easier last night knowing where their kids are kids to school.

8th Assembly District Race

Well if it means anything, Supervisor Matt Rexroad is now calling the race for West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon. It seems like the Assemblywoman Lois Wolk endorsement of Cabaldon’s campaign has been known in inside circles for sometime, and even before it was official, it seemed like she was leaning that direction.

However this week, Mayor Cabaldon gained the Democratic Party’s endorsement and the endorsement of the sitting Assemblywoman.

As Matt Rexroad states:

“I knew that it was coming last week. Now that it is official that Assemblywoman Wolk has endorsed Cabaldon for Assembly I think it is over.

For weeks I have been telling people that Cabaldon is favored but they should not underestimate what Yamada can do on the ballot. This district wants to elect a woman. That ended yesterday.

With a huge endorsement advantage including support of the incumbent, a fund raising advantage that is going to approach a ratio of infinity:1, and the party endorsement, Cabaldon is the next Assemblyman for Woodland.”

It was a nice ceremony on Thursday with Former Assemblymembers Tom Hannigan and Helen Thomson joining the sitting Assemblywoman and the candidate. And yet, where was the news coverage? There was not another member of the press at this event.

The public is really getting shortchanged on the local election coverage. No one else covered the candidates forum this week and that was with Davis Enterprise assistant publisher/ editor Debbie Davis as moderator of the forum and reporter Claire St. John in the audience seemingly taking notes. From the standpoint of the public making informed decisions, the information is scant from the mainstream press.

Back to the 8th Assembly race for a moment. One could argue that it might not have mattered anyway–Christopher Cabaldon has run a tremendous race, he has earned endorsements throughout the district from elected officials, he has captured the activist youth, and he has raised a huge amount of money.

At the same time, one has to wonder what if. At the beginning of 2007, Mariko Yamada was a fairly popular Supervisor who had strong support among the Davis Progressive community and then for some reason, she decided to back efforts to develop on Davis’ borders. This drove her base into the arms of Christopher Cabaldon. You just cannot do that politics. And if that were it, that would have been bad enough, but from the start, she has been outworked on the campaign trail by Cabaldon and his team. And so even when she and her supporters put on a fullcourt press last weekend to avert an CDP endorsement for Cabaldon, she managed just 13 votes and just a 160 signatures. Too little, too late.

Is the race over? That is more difficult to assess since there are no reliable polls for the race or the district. But it is increasingly difficult to see a scenario where she even keeps the race close given both the advantage in terms of support among elected officials but also the monetary advantage. Her financial report from a week ago was frankly appalling. She is not bringing in money. One could theoretically overcome that with grassroots organization, but there is little evidence that she has produced that.

I stop short of declaring the race over, but at this point it does not look good from the Yamada campaign. And in some ways that is too bad because I still remember the Mariko Yamada who was the fighter for social justice. Sadly it appears she has even allowed Cabaldon to steal that mantle.

—Doug Paul Davis reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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56 thoughts on “Vanguard Commentary: Schools and the 8th Assembly Race”

  1. Randy

    Not so fast on crowning Cabaldon. Mariko Yamada has strong support from labor. Endorsements don’t mean much if you don’t get your voters to the polls and Cabaldon won’t be able to buy club memberships to get votes on June 3.

  2. Randy

    Not so fast on crowning Cabaldon. Mariko Yamada has strong support from labor. Endorsements don’t mean much if you don’t get your voters to the polls and Cabaldon won’t be able to buy club memberships to get votes on June 3.

  3. Randy

    Not so fast on crowning Cabaldon. Mariko Yamada has strong support from labor. Endorsements don’t mean much if you don’t get your voters to the polls and Cabaldon won’t be able to buy club memberships to get votes on June 3.

  4. Randy

    Not so fast on crowning Cabaldon. Mariko Yamada has strong support from labor. Endorsements don’t mean much if you don’t get your voters to the polls and Cabaldon won’t be able to buy club memberships to get votes on June 3.

  5. truman

    The Cabaldon Campaign has clearly outworked the Yamada Campaign. Whatever chance Mariko Yamada once had appears to be gone. The environmental activists within the district once split between the two are now with Cabaldon. The progressives once the backbone of the Yamada campaign are now with Chris. Rank & file labor once solidly behind Yamada are split between the two. The grassroots activists and the leaders within the Yolo and Solano Democratic Parties are now overwhelmingly behind Cabaldon. With the California Democratic Party now officially endorsing Chris, along with the endorsement of the very popular Lois Wolk and her well thought of predecessors Chris Cabaldon is rapidly earning clear recognition as the future assemblyman for the 8th Assembly District.

  6. truman

    The Cabaldon Campaign has clearly outworked the Yamada Campaign. Whatever chance Mariko Yamada once had appears to be gone. The environmental activists within the district once split between the two are now with Cabaldon. The progressives once the backbone of the Yamada campaign are now with Chris. Rank & file labor once solidly behind Yamada are split between the two. The grassroots activists and the leaders within the Yolo and Solano Democratic Parties are now overwhelmingly behind Cabaldon. With the California Democratic Party now officially endorsing Chris, along with the endorsement of the very popular Lois Wolk and her well thought of predecessors Chris Cabaldon is rapidly earning clear recognition as the future assemblyman for the 8th Assembly District.

  7. truman

    The Cabaldon Campaign has clearly outworked the Yamada Campaign. Whatever chance Mariko Yamada once had appears to be gone. The environmental activists within the district once split between the two are now with Cabaldon. The progressives once the backbone of the Yamada campaign are now with Chris. Rank & file labor once solidly behind Yamada are split between the two. The grassroots activists and the leaders within the Yolo and Solano Democratic Parties are now overwhelmingly behind Cabaldon. With the California Democratic Party now officially endorsing Chris, along with the endorsement of the very popular Lois Wolk and her well thought of predecessors Chris Cabaldon is rapidly earning clear recognition as the future assemblyman for the 8th Assembly District.

  8. truman

    The Cabaldon Campaign has clearly outworked the Yamada Campaign. Whatever chance Mariko Yamada once had appears to be gone. The environmental activists within the district once split between the two are now with Cabaldon. The progressives once the backbone of the Yamada campaign are now with Chris. Rank & file labor once solidly behind Yamada are split between the two. The grassroots activists and the leaders within the Yolo and Solano Democratic Parties are now overwhelmingly behind Cabaldon. With the California Democratic Party now officially endorsing Chris, along with the endorsement of the very popular Lois Wolk and her well thought of predecessors Chris Cabaldon is rapidly earning clear recognition as the future assemblyman for the 8th Assembly District.

  9. Anonymous

    “two of the members who voted to close Valley Oak, the two strongest proponents of that closing, led the way to keep Emerson open.”

    If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.

  10. Anonymous

    “two of the members who voted to close Valley Oak, the two strongest proponents of that closing, led the way to keep Emerson open.”

    If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.

  11. Anonymous

    “two of the members who voted to close Valley Oak, the two strongest proponents of that closing, led the way to keep Emerson open.”

    If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.

  12. Anonymous

    “two of the members who voted to close Valley Oak, the two strongest proponents of that closing, led the way to keep Emerson open.”

    If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.

  13. If I Am Not Mistaken

    “If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.”

    If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.

  14. If I Am Not Mistaken

    “If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.”

    If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.

  15. If I Am Not Mistaken

    “If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.”

    If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.

  16. If I Am Not Mistaken

    “If you’re talking about Harris and Lovenburg, they did not vote to close Valley Oak. They weren’t on the Board yet. Yes, they were proponents but they didn’t vote to close it.”

    If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.

  17. Anonymous

    Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval. I think that was in January or February 2007? The Progressives started going to Cabaldon. He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.

  18. Anonymous

    Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval. I think that was in January or February 2007? The Progressives started going to Cabaldon. He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.

  19. Anonymous

    Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval. I think that was in January or February 2007? The Progressives started going to Cabaldon. He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.

  20. Anonymous

    Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval. I think that was in January or February 2007? The Progressives started going to Cabaldon. He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.

  21. Anonymous

    Goodnight Yamada, because your run is over. With almost no money for voter contact, and the only mailer she has people are using her own piece as a hit piece (and I would never send that to voters that will be the end of your political life) NO grass roots support. Labor needs to drop all their races and just make this their race to stand a chance and they won’t do that when they have other races they care about.

  22. Anonymous

    Goodnight Yamada, because your run is over. With almost no money for voter contact, and the only mailer she has people are using her own piece as a hit piece (and I would never send that to voters that will be the end of your political life) NO grass roots support. Labor needs to drop all their races and just make this their race to stand a chance and they won’t do that when they have other races they care about.

  23. Anonymous

    Goodnight Yamada, because your run is over. With almost no money for voter contact, and the only mailer she has people are using her own piece as a hit piece (and I would never send that to voters that will be the end of your political life) NO grass roots support. Labor needs to drop all their races and just make this their race to stand a chance and they won’t do that when they have other races they care about.

  24. Anonymous

    Goodnight Yamada, because your run is over. With almost no money for voter contact, and the only mailer she has people are using her own piece as a hit piece (and I would never send that to voters that will be the end of your political life) NO grass roots support. Labor needs to drop all their races and just make this their race to stand a chance and they won’t do that when they have other races they care about.

  25. Anonymous

    “Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval.”

    Really? Wow! Too bad that it never happened. This is a falsehood. Pure and blatant.

  26. Anonymous

    “Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval.”

    Really? Wow! Too bad that it never happened. This is a falsehood. Pure and blatant.

  27. Anonymous

    “Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval.”

    Really? Wow! Too bad that it never happened. This is a falsehood. Pure and blatant.

  28. Anonymous

    “Yamada was finished the day it was reported that she supported new urban development on the borders of Davis without needing the City’s approval.”

    Really? Wow! Too bad that it never happened. This is a falsehood. Pure and blatant.

  29. davisite

    DPD… Yamada did try and “move the goal-posts” when she suggested that the County should place areas on Davis’ periphery under consideration for residential development in the County General Plan and she did say that our Pass-through agreement was not functioning well now but,as I remember it, she never said that the Pass-through agreement should be voided.

  30. davisite

    DPD… Yamada did try and “move the goal-posts” when she suggested that the County should place areas on Davis’ periphery under consideration for residential development in the County General Plan and she did say that our Pass-through agreement was not functioning well now but,as I remember it, she never said that the Pass-through agreement should be voided.

  31. davisite

    DPD… Yamada did try and “move the goal-posts” when she suggested that the County should place areas on Davis’ periphery under consideration for residential development in the County General Plan and she did say that our Pass-through agreement was not functioning well now but,as I remember it, she never said that the Pass-through agreement should be voided.

  32. davisite

    DPD… Yamada did try and “move the goal-posts” when she suggested that the County should place areas on Davis’ periphery under consideration for residential development in the County General Plan and she did say that our Pass-through agreement was not functioning well now but,as I remember it, she never said that the Pass-through agreement should be voided.

  33. Anonymous

    “He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.”
    4/5/08 11:00 PM

    Anonymous, what did Cabaldon do to the poor residents?

  34. Anonymous

    “He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.”
    4/5/08 11:00 PM

    Anonymous, what did Cabaldon do to the poor residents?

  35. Anonymous

    “He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.”
    4/5/08 11:00 PM

    Anonymous, what did Cabaldon do to the poor residents?

  36. Anonymous

    “He already had the County’s developers, given what he did as Mayor to the poor residents of West Sacramento.”
    4/5/08 11:00 PM

    Anonymous, what did Cabaldon do to the poor residents?

  37. Anonymous

    “If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.”

    You are mistaken, sorry. Neither was on the task force. Check the membership list at the district web site.

  38. Anonymous

    “If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.”

    You are mistaken, sorry. Neither was on the task force. Check the membership list at the district web site.

  39. Anonymous

    “If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.”

    You are mistaken, sorry. Neither was on the task force. Check the membership list at the district web site.

  40. Anonymous

    “If I am not mistaken, they were both on the Best Uses of Schools Task Force that voted to close Valley Oak.”

    You are mistaken, sorry. Neither was on the task force. Check the membership list at the district web site.

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