By Robert Haugh
On September 20, the Old Quad Residents Association hosted the first forum of the political season. You can watch it on their Facebook page if you weren’t there last Thursday at the American Legion Hall.
There weren’t any major fireworks or revelations or body slams. It was like a match between The Brooklyn Brawler and the Red Rooster. The lead up to the event was more interesting. In fact, Acting City Clerk Jennifer Yamaguma’s smackdown of the Santa Clara Weekly for their erroneous reporting was more entertaining than anything anyone said Thursday night.
City Clerk Candidates
Five candidates showed up:
Roseann LaCoursiere was a no-show.
They all did an admirable job talking about their plans and qualifications. There was no real surprises. Some attendees said Haggag was the most detailed about his plans. Others said that O’Keefe seemed to be the most confident and clear speaker.
A couple interesting tidbits:
MacDevitt and Roberts did not submit ballot statements. That could hurt them since most voters get information on ballot races from the voter pamphlet.
Stampolis mentioned his years of public service a bunch of times. But he never said he was on the Santa Clara Unified School Board. Interesting. He may be concerned that his negative reputation and stories about serving on the school board will hurt him with Mission City voters.
Mayor Lisa Gillmor and Anthony Becker had the stage to the themselves.
Gillmor is expected to easily win re-election. So maybe she was overconfident. Her performance was just okay. She didn’t make any mistakes. But she also didn’t give the audience any wow moments. Gillmor only mentioned the 49ers and Chamber of Commerce once during the hour long debate. That was a surprise. She recently led the city to two high profile “wins” against each organization. Gillmor could do some bragging.
Becker, on the other hand, seemed way out of place. He was uninformed on a lot of the issues. His criticisms of Gillmor and the city were weak. Maybe that’s because most Santa Clarans think the city is headed in the right direction.
Becker also made a blunder. He said that Gillmor wasted $100,000 on an early 1990s audit of the Chamber. He mentioned how she and then-Mayor Eddie Souza and Councilman Jim Ash made it happen. Problem. Those people add up to THREE votes, not FOUR. Gillmor said it was an “audit that never happened.” We checked the record. She’s right. It was NEVER funded. Oops. Becker seems to be getting his research on this topic (and others?) from Weekly Lobbyist/Publisher Miles Barber’s columns.
He may want to ask Acting City Clerk Yamaguma about the credibility of the source before the next debate. Just a suggestion.
Thursday, October 11, 2018
6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. City Clerk Candidates
7:45 p.m. – 8:45 p.m. Mayoral Candidates
City Council Chambers
Wednesday, October 17, 2018
6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Council Candidates, District 2
7:45 p.m. – 8:45 p.m. Council Candidates, District 3