District 6 Candidates Gary Barve and Anthony Becker Recently Moved Into District to Run for City Council

By Robert Haugh

There are three candidates vying for City Council in District 6 to succeed Councilwoman Debi Davis. She has decided to step down from office.

Two candidates recently moved into the district to run after it became known that Davis would not seek re-election.

Gautam ‘Gary’ Barve registered to vote at his District 6 address on May 7, just five months ago.

“The Santa Clara District 6 area I’m living in is incredible, and the people are very friendly,” Barve wrote in an email. “I was looking for a new place to reside in, and this seemed like a good fit for me.”

“I wanted to run for city council in our Santa Clara to get an opportunity to serve, and District 6 was up for re-election.”

Anthony Becker registered to vote at his District 6 address on February 6, just eighth months ago.

Becker did not respond to multiple requests by email. He insisted on a Zoom call to explain himself.

One week after registering to vote in District 6, Becker publicly announced that he was running for City Council.

Becker previously ran for Mayor and Council while residing in a different district.

District 6 Council candidates Anthony Becker (left) and Gautam “Gary” Barve

Rob Mezzetti has the longest residency in District 6. He has lived on the same street and neighborhood in Santa Clara “for over 50 years.”

Mezzetti emailed that he has been “registered at my current address since 2017.”

District 6 Council candidate Rob Mezzetti

Councilwoman Davis has endorsed Mezzetti to succeed her.

District 6 was created in 2018 when Judge Thomas Kuhnle forced the drawing of 6 districts in Santa Clara.

Kuhnle determined that there was racially polarized voting in Santa Clara. 

But Kuhnle had to lower a statistic from 95 percent probability (the legal precedent) to 80 percent probability to show that there was racially polarized voting. 

The City is currently appealing Kuhnle’s decision.

19 comments

  1. If Anthony Becker only recently moved into District 6 because Debi Davis termed out, thus opening up a window for him to run as a Jed York/49er’s backed candidate, then he is an opportunist taking advantage of the district system. Even more ironic since he’s not a minority, and exactly the kind of candidate the district system was NOT meant to help. Since Robert Mezzetti has been a District 6 resident for decades, I think he will understand District 6 concerns better, including San Jose’s proposed overdevelopment along Stevens Creek Blvd, traffic concerns, etc.

    • Amen.

      And isn’t it the pinnacle of hypocrisy to see the 49ers, along with Harbir, Kevin, Suds (and the Asian Law Alliance and Wesley Mukoyama) touting racial diversity on council, but then snubbing the only minority candidate running for District 6 (Gautam “Gary” Barve) and propping up with the white guy?

      What a joke.

  2. How offended could you be by finding out how long someone’s lived in the area? So I guess it’s no concern of yours if somebody moved from one district just to run in another?

    Not very transparent of you.

  3. I personally find it offensive when every election we hear about how many generations or years some candidate lived in some part of the city, as if divine right was how we pick elected leaders. We should focus on a candidate’s background and position, not how long they’ve slept in one location.

    • MacDevitt it’s not necessarily a “divine right”, but just the concept of someone like Becker (or his backers) gaming the system by renting a pad in a district for the sole purposes of qualifying to run, not because he cares of about the residents of the district and its concerns, which is supposed to be one of the benefits of a district system.

      I don’t know what district he lived in before, but if it was previously one that either Jain or Park is running in now, that says a lot.

  4. My strategy is to vote against anyone that the niners support. That leaves two candidates in district 6.
    Rob and Gary, it’s pretty easy from there.

  5. There is one white guy we don’t need, and that’s Anthony Becker. Anthony hasn’t been able to succeed in his own life, how could he possibly help the city?

    This guy has never had a job for more than a couple years. No career.

  6. Lol! Can’t understand why this story hasn’t been picked up by national wire services!
    Look. Who honestly cares. You want only long time residents? Then you get the same ol. A bunch of older white people making decisions for majority (minority) as Santa Clara is today. Santa Clara residents are not the same as “50 years ago.”
    Santa Clara needs a Council that reflects what it is today. Not 5 decades ago.

    • Not necessarily “long time residents”, but at least not someone like Becker who has rented a pad in the district right before filing papers, just to qualify as a resident. I think it’s reasonable to be skeptical of Becker’s motives given the circumstances.

  7. I think it’s important for everyone to know if somebody moved into the district just for the election or they actually intended on living there. I think it’s a very fair question, it’s important to know if your candidate is a carpetbagger or not.

    This was a big topic in the last election and I appreciate Robert’s unbiased truthfulness.

    Facts are facts and sensitivity tends to take away from the truth.

    Maybe Yuki just wants to support her unaccomplished buddy Becker. There was no mercy for Sam Kumar last election.

  8. Thanks always for covering important topics on SC.
    I am a little concerned about making an issue out of how long someone has lived in a district where he/she is running. Mr. Becker, for example, has a long root in our community, and it is not fair to just focus on how long he has lived at his latest address. Half of our city’s residents are renters, and they may be more mobile than people who own their homes. They need to be represented at our city hall, just as much as homeowners, especially now that housing shortage is such a critical issue. I hope we can cover this issue with sensitivity.

    • I think it’s quite hypocritical for candidate Anthony Becker and his supporters and fellow Council Candidates running in other districts when they talk a lot about how awesome the district model is, but then just move addresses and “carpetbag” to another district to run in it because they want to play musical chairs from their original district.

      How is that fair representation to that district? Now they dont even have a local representative – just a carpetbagger from another district swooping in to this new district because they have a better chance of winning there.

      Also, why is nobody talking about how the candidates beating their chests about electing racial minority candidates are snubbing the Asian American Gautam “Gary” Barve and promoting a white American Anthony Becker instead? Hypocrisy on all fronts.

  9. Robert, can you clear something up for me? If Mr Mezzetti has lived on the same street and neighborhood for 50 years. Why does he state that he only registered to vote at that address in 2017? Did he use another address and vote in some other city or did he Not vote at all. Maybe you can clarify that? Again, if Me Mezzetti or any District 6 candidate will support Pruneridge as a two lane road and making good use of Levi’s stadium in order to bring down the budget deficit then they can count on my vote.

    Thank You
    George Guerra
    50 year resident of Santa Clara

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