Issue:  Vol. 47 / No. 46 / 16 November 2017
 

Former SF Supervisor Dufty endorses Mandelman for his old D8 seat

Former Supervisor Bevan Dufty, left, has endorsed Rafael Mandelman, seen at this year's Pride fun run, for District 8 supervisor.

Former Supervisor Bevan Dufty, left, has endorsed Rafael Mandelman, seen at this year’s Pride fun run, for District 8 supervisor.

Former San Francisco Supervisor Bevan Dufty has endorsed Rafael Mandelman in the 2018 race for his old District 8 seat on the board.

Mandelman, a gay attorney who serves on the board that oversees City College of San Francisco, is running against Supervisor Jeff Sheehy, a gay married father who is the first openly HIV-positive person to serve on the board.

They are running against each other in a special election next June as Sheehy was appointed by Mayor Ed Lee earlier this year to fill the vacancy created by gay former Supervisor Scott Wiener’s election to the state Senate. Sheehy is seeking to serve out the remainder of Wiener’s term on the June 2018 primary ballot.

He would then run for a full four-year term on the November ballot next year, a race that Mandelman has also filed to run in no matter the outcome of the June race. It is the second time Mandelman has sought the District 8 seat, having lost to Wiener in 2010.

Dufty, who is also gay and now serves on the BART board of directors, told the Bay Area Reporter in a brief phone interview today (Thursday, October 19) that his decision “was not easy, ” as he has known both Sheehy and Mandelman for years. But he determined that Mandelman is better suited to lead the district, which includes the gay Castro neighborhood and has been represented at City Hall by gay men since 2000 when supervisor seats reverted to being elected by district.

“I worked with and watched Rafael for many years. His leadership at City College took it from shambles to tuition free,” said Dufty, referring to Mandelman’s having served as board president of the community college district board as it fought to maintain its accreditation and helped spearhead the ballot measure last fall to have San Francisco cover the cost for city residents to attend City College full-time.

Dufty added that Mandelman’s “message about the politics of yes speaks to me and others who want to see pro-active solutions to homelessness and a strong focus on our neighborhood.”

He informed Sheehy of decision by phone and said the two “had a respectful conversation. It is not easy, but I feel Rafael is really ready to lead District 8 and to lead our city.”

In the spring Dufty had told the B.A.R. he would wait until next year to endorse in the race. But he timed his announcement to coincide with a fundraiser numerous LGBT leaders are hosting in the Castro tonight for Mandelman to celebrate his birthday. Mandelman turned 44 on Tuesday.

Mandelman’s campaign formally announced Dufty’s endorsement this afternoon in an email blast to supporters inviting them to tonight’s fundraiser at the Blackbird bar on upper Market Street.

It is the second endorsement in the race by a former occupant of the District 8 seat. Wiener endorsed Sheehy earlier this year, telling the B.A.R. in May that he “thinks the world of Jeff” and that he has already proved to be “a strong leader” on the board.

The other former District 8 supervisor, Mark Leno, who went on to serve in the state Legislature and is running in 2019 to be San Francisco’s first gay mayor, has not endorsed in the supervisor race.

 

 

— Matthew S. Bajko, October 19, 2017 @ 1:19 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized


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