Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

Gay SF City College trustee secures Democratic Party endorsement

City College Trustee Alex Randolph

City College Trustee Alex Randolph

Gay San Francisco City College Trustee Alex Randolph has secured the local Democratic Party’s endorsement in his race to keep his seat this fall.

Randolph, who was tapped by Mayor Ed Lee in April to fill a vacancy, is running to finish out the remainder of the term, which expires in 2016. Opposing him are gay nightlife promoter Thomas Temprano, a co-owner of Mission bar Virgil’s Sea Room, and Wendy Aragon, who works in the construction industry and last year unsuccessfully vied for a seat on the community college district board. A fourth candidate, Jason Zeng, also filed to run by the August 7 deadline to do so with elections officials.

The more moderate Alice B. Toklas LGBT Democratic Club is also backing Randolph, who served on its board, while the progressive Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club has endorsed Temprano, its former president. As the Political Notebook in today’s Bay Area Reporter noted, Aragon has the support of a number of local unions and this week picked up the endorsement of the San Francisco Labor Council.

The down ticket contest for city college board is one of three on the November 3 ballot seen as highly competitive races. The other two being the elections for sheriff and the supervisor of District 3, which covers North Beach and Chinatown.

At its meeting last night (Wednesday, August 12), the Democratic County Central Committee, which votes on the local party’s endorsements, also backed the more moderate candidates in those races.

The current holder of the District 3 seat, Supervisor Julie Christensen, who was appointed to fill a vacancy by Lee earlier this year, won the DCCC’s backing in her race against former District 3 Supervisor Aaron Peskin, who had served as board president and is a leading progressive voice in city politics.

Wilma Pang, who last ran for the seat in 2012, is once again in the running this year. But most of the focus on the race has been the match-up between Christensen and Peskin.

In the sheriff’s race it was the incumbent, former Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, who came up short last night. The DCCC threw its support behind Vicki Hennessy, who briefly served as interim sheriff four years ago after Lee suspended Mirkarimi due to his being charged with domestic violence following a fight he had with his wife, Eliana Lopez.

Mirkarimi ended up pleading guilty to a misdemeanor and agreed to undergo counseling and serve three years of probation. He escaped being officially removed from office when four Board of Supervisors members voted in October of 2012 not to sustain Lee’s official misconduct charges against the sheriff.

He was re-instated to the post, and this spring, had his false-imprisonment conviction expunged from his record. But the scandal has continued to engulf the sheriff and his allies ever since.

And his tenure has been beset by a series of missteps and controversies that have the beleaguered sheriff fighting for his political life. John C. Robinson, a retired sheriff’s deputy who now owns a private security company, is also in the race.

— Matthew S. Bajko, August 13, 2015 @ 11:30 am PST
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