Santa Clara City Councilmember Anthony Becker Advocated for Issue Then Abstained, Likely Violating An FPPC Rule

By Robert Haugh

Santa Clara City Councilmember Anthony Becker likely violated an California Fair Political Practices (FPPC) rule at the City Council Meeting on Tuesday.

Becker sponsored an agenda item called a “030” that allows Councilmembers and the public to request a topic be placed on a future Council agenda.

Becker wants a report released about an investigation into his behavior last August. He made his case during a Council discussion.

The Council unanimously approved Becker’s request on a 6-0 vote with Becker abstaining. 

Yup, Becker introduced the issue and advocated for it. He even pushed City staff to schedule the meeting for a specific date, December 5. 

When vote came and Becker said he was abstaining. Wow.

According to a knowledgeable attorney, Becker committed a violation. Becker participated in the discussion instead of leaving the room as the law requires.

Becker has never abstained on an issue during his time on the Council or declared a conflict of interest. But he’s seen his colleagues do it numerous times since he’s been in office.

So Becker is familiar with the rule and practice.

Here’s the FPPC language:

The investigation that Becker wants released involves his alleged actions during a closed session in August, 2022. 

Mayor Lisa Gillmor and Councilmember Kathy Watanabe said they felt threatened by Becker who allegedly yelled “F-you” at them and made an obscene gesture.

Becker hung up the phone when a San Francisco Chronicle reporter asked him about the incident. The newspaper broke the story.

Becker has a history of abusive behavior in Santa Clara that Santa Clara News Online has tracked.

Becker is also facing misdemeanor and felony charges for leaking a Grand Jury report and lying about it.

Last Tuesday’s apparent FPPC violation, according to our source, would not likely be a felony.


  1. “Making his readers dumber with every biased post”. So an elected official believes that the residents of Santa Clara are dumb, and by reading this we have become dumber. Am I insulted? No, I’ll just consider the source. A person who was aware that another council person committed a crime and chose not to say anything until he was under oath and covered his own butt.
    One of the things talked about at the recent ethics class was that “public officials should avoid even the appearance of impropriety”
    This would fall under that in my opinion. These people sat in this presentation too and it clearly had no impact on them. They were there for the optics of being in an ethics presentation, not to change their ways.

  2. Both the Civil Grand Jury (third time for Becker) and FPPC received requests to review this matter. A rare compliment from me to Mr. Haugh, but I am grateful this article as it has provided me with the material for these official filings naming Jain as well.

  3. In the San Jose Spotlight article yesterday, Karen Hardy is quoted as saying this:

    “Councilmember Karen Hardy, who was in the closed session meeting in 2022 where the alleged altercation happened, said Tuesday ahead of the meeting she has reviewed the full investigative report. She told San José Spotlight the report makes it “very clear what happened and what didn’t.”

    The investigative report is confidential and has only been released to 3 people: Anthony Becker, Lisa Gillmor and myself. I have confirmed this with the City Attorney. How did Karen Hardy get a copy of a confidential full investigative report? Did Anthony Becker illegally give it to her? He’s already been indicted for doing that with a confidential Criminal Grand Jury Report and lying about it. Or is Karen Hardy the one who is lying now?

  4. Once again we have Robert Haugh making his readers dumber with every biased post.

    There is a difference between recusing due to a conflict and abstaining. If you recuse then you have to leave the dais and not vote but councilmembers can abstain for many reasons. I have seen many board members and councilmembers fully participate in issues and then vote to abstain.

    • I take offense every time you say he is making all the readers “dumber.” You are speaking about your constituents, potential voters in Santa Clara. Insulting registered Santa Clara voters is not going to win the hearts and minds, but hey… you get 49er money to back your election.

    • If you read the textd between becker and jain, dude, you would discover jain regards all of your fellow readers as dumb and racist. Read their texts

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