No Elected Democrats Are Supporting the SF DA Recall

Chesa Boudin at a recent Sacramento Press Conference

By Robert J. Hansen

San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin faces a recall effort next month that has been framed by some media outlets and a select number of Democrats as a bipartisan effort.

The poll being cited by media outlets from Politico to the Atlantic to local news outlets like KRON 4, was funded by supporters of the recall. 

The poll included 800 likely voters in San Francisco and claims to have a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percent.

In a city of half a million voters and with a sample of 800 used by a biased “researcher,” the results of that poll are not worth mentioning yet it is being widely used by reporters both in San Francisco and around the country.

NBC Bay Area reported last November that there are 33,000 registered Republicans in the city and more than 83,000 San Franciscans signed the petition to qualify the recall for next month’s ballot.

That November, Mary Jung, a former San Francisco Democratic Party chair, released a statement as one of the leading organizers of the recall campaign. 

“… we have support from hundreds of volunteers from across San Francisco and the vast majority of our more than 600 donors are Democrats, decline to state, and no party preference voters,” Jung said.

However, in February, the Democratic County Central Committee voted 20-2 to oppose the recall of DA Boudin.

The only two people voting to support the recall were Suzy Loftus and Nancy Tung, both of whom ran against Boudin for DA in 2018.

Spokesperson with the group ‘Friends of Chesa Boudin Opposing the Recall,’ Julie Edwards, everyone who San Francisco voters trust oppose the recall.

“Every current elected official who has weighed in on this said no on the recall,” Edwards said. 

Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez and Phil Ting, State Senator Sydney Kamlager, Former State Senator Mark Leno, and Former Assemblymember Tom Ammiano are among the litany of current and former elected officials that oppose the recall.

“It is a broad and deep coalition of trusted leaders and organizations who are unified saying ‘reject this recall,’” Edwards said.

The San Francisco Republican Party officially endorses the recall and the majority of funding has come from Republican lead organizations or people who support the recall.

Like billionaire Republican William Oberndorf who has given over $602,000 to Super Pac, Neighbors for a Better San Francisco, in 2021 alone. Neighbors in turn has given more than $2.75 million to the recall. (Oberndorf has also donated $49,000 directly to the recall).

Oberndorf donates heavily to Republicans though he has donated to few Democrats. And though his public comments and donation history indicate he is an anti-Trump Republican, he donates millions of dollars to congressional Republicans, most notably Mitch McConnell’s fund for Republican Senate candidates, according to Open Secrets.

Neighbors for a Better San Francisco, a political action committee, has to date been funded with more than $4.3 million of the total roughly $5 million spent in support of the recall according to the San Francisco Ethics Committee.

Campaign finance information acquired from the San Francisco Ethics Committee on May 3, 2022.   


“None of these is about public safety, it’s about politics, it’s about stopping criminal justice reform, and it’s about removing an elected official who has stood up to some powerful special interests,” Edwards said.

Edwards said that Republicans and others against criminal justice reform are attempting to send a message in San Francisco across the country that they will try to stop progress no matter what it takes.

“Every single step of progress that we have made as a society to be fairer and more just, is what these guys are against.

Supervisor Hillary Ronen, who is on the committee, spoke to Tim Redmond of 48 Hills about the issues in the recall. “The criminal justice system,” Ronin said, “is part of a larger system in the US that is failing.”

“We are dealing with chaos on the streets of San Francisco. San Franciscans are angry. But these problems are rooted in economic and racial injustice and inequality, ‘ Ronin said. “We are dealing with the symptoms, while not blaming the victims. It’s a balance and a struggle that we are all dealing with. We have to look at [Boudin] and his work in that context.”

Some of Boudin’s work includes supporting AB 1171, ending the exception for spousal rape, which resulted in more lenient penalties for those who raped their spouses.

According to ‘Friends of Chesa Boudin,’ he created a pilot program to expand testing for toxicology samples in sexual assault cases and the AAPI Elder Abuse Steering Committee to protect vulnerable community members.

He created the first-ever victim advocate positions for property crimes to support victims of residential burglaries and merchants facing storefront vandalism.

Launched a primary care diversion program to prevent incarceration from impacting children and families and help break the cycle of crime.

Created a new policy to ensure that all victims with limited English proficiency have access to interpreters in court.

Expanded the number of bilingual victim service advocates including expanding the number of Cantonese-speaking advocates by nearly 500 percent.

Staffed a hate crime hotline with multilingual Victim Service Advocates.

Edwards says that if conservatives were to put on the ballot measure Boudin’s policies like ending cash bail or his commitment to not prosecuting juveniles as adults or police accountability, they would fail.

“They would overwhelmingly fail,” Edwards said. “They cannot win on the policies and they cannot win in a regular campaign. So instead they are using endless amounts of money to force a recall on San Francisco voters.”

About The Author

Robert J Hansen is an investigative journalist and economist. Robert is covering the Yolo County DA's race for the Vanguard.

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  1. Keith Olson

     the results of that poll are not worth mentioning yet

    Oh, I believe they are:

    But on Wednesday, recall proponents released polling that suggests why they’re feeling bullish: a poll they commissioned found 68 percent of voters would unseat DA Chesa Boudin, versus 32 percent who would keep him.
    A critical caveat:We try to be judicious with internal polling, since those surveys tend to bolster the narrative of whoever’s funding them. But you’d need a boulder of salt to offset the two-to-one margin this poll uncovers. And for what it’s worth, the poll led with an up-or-down “if the election were held today, would you vote yes to approve or no to reject” question before segueing into some message-testing that could have primed voters to a particular conclusion.

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