First, a disclaimer:  this site is neutral as explained in the post “Why We Try To Keep Partisan Politics Out of These Postings”  These postings are provided as a community service, and not to push a particular candidate, or slate of candidates.

    This is a slate mailer, which comes from a company that campaigns can pay to include their candidates.  I have not seen any studies on these, but I would guess that they are most effective when you have a national race, and you also have a local election, and you can send it to people registered in a party, or decline-t0-state, and include your measure or candidate to ride the coattails of a nationwide or statewide candidate.  They often include paid and non-paid “endorsements.”  This mailer only includes paid endorsements, as shown by an asterisk.

    The back of this slate mailer has photographs of President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.  It includes a quote, from no one in particular,

    “Voting for Barack Obama and Joe Biden was just the beginning of the change our country needs.  To move forward we also have to vote  for good local elected officials who will work with the people to make our communities a better place to live.  On November 8th, you will have a chance to move our country forward by voting for our communities Democratic Team.  Please take this card to the polls and consider our recommendations.  Thank you!”

    The back also has a little graphic that says “Vote Democratic” with a donkey kicking on an American Flag shield.  Below the address, it says “ELECTION DAY IS TUESDAY NOV. 8TH VOTER GUIDE ON BACK OF THIS CARD”   The fine print says “NOTICE TO VOTERS THIS DOCUMENT WAS PREPARED BY DEMOCRATIC VOTERS CHOICE, NOT AN OFFICIAL PARTY ORGANIZATION.  Appearance in this mailer does not necessarily imply endorsement of others appearing in this mailer,.[sic] nor does it imply endorsement of, or opposition to, any issues set forth in this mailer.  Appearance is paid for and authorized by each candidate and ballot measure designated by an*.”  The slate mailer shows an Arcadia mailing permit.


    On the left, it has a left of offices, with the name of one of the candidates in bold with an asterisk after each: City Attorney JIM PENMAN* CITY CLERK AMELIA SANCHEZ-LOPEZ* CITY COUNCIL WARD 3 JOHN VALDIVIA* CITY COUNCIL WARD 5 CHAS KELLEY* CITY COUNCIL WARD 7 WENDY McCAMMACK* and the legend, “Take this card with you to the polls.”

    Then to the right of the list is a picture of each of the candidates mentioned in the list and a little blurb about each.  It says “JIM PENMAN for City Attorney.  Our City Attorney Jim Penman. Former Director of Home of Neighborly Service.  Endorsed by AFL-CIO, San Bernardino PublicEmployees [sic] Associa tion [sic] and former Mayor Judith Valles.”

    Next: “AMELIA SANCHEZ-LOPEZ for San Bernardino City Clerk.  Our Voice for Integrity.  Our Democratic Choice for City Clerk!  Endorsed by San Bernardino Democratic Party, Central Labor Council AFL-CIO and Congressman Joe Baca.

    Then: “JOHN VALDIVIA for 3rd Ward City Council.  Vote Valdivia. Replace the failed Republican incumbent!  John Valdivia is endorsed by our Teachers, Firefighters, Police Officers and Central Labor Council AFL-CIO.

    CHAS KELLEY for 5th Ward Council.  Re-Elect 5th Ward Councilman Chas Kelley.  Effective leader for our neighborhoods.  Endorsed by the Central Labor Council AFL-CIO and Democratic leaders like former Mayor Judith Valles.”

    WENDY MCCAMACK for 7th Ward.  She fights for seniors and working families![ ]Endorsed by the AFL-CIO, SB Firefighters, P olice[sic] Officers and former Mayor Judith Valles.

    Of course, as anyone paying attention already knows, only one of these people actually claims the endorsement of the actual San Bernardino County Democratic party, and only one of them is a registered Democrat, and of course, two of them are well-known Republicans.    The San Bernardino County Democratic Party, on their website, cries foul.  However, I don’t think anyone takes paid slate mailers seriously, and careful reading of the document shows it comes from a non-party organization.  Further, it is a non-partisan race.

    How much does it cost to be on a slate mailer like this?  On his September 28, 2011 FPPC Form 460, City Attorney James F. Penman had a payment to “Democratic Voters Choice” in the amount of $1,200.  He also had a payment of $960 to “Citizens for Good Government” of $960, which shares the same address in Covina as Democratic Voters Choice.

    Even though it is a non-partisan election, if you really care about the local Democratic party’s choices, from their website:

    These are the endorsements of the San Bernardino County Democratic Central Committee:

    San Bernardino City Attorney – No Endorsement

    San Bernardino City Clerk – Amelia Sanchez-Lopez

    San Bernardino City Council- 3rd Ward – No Democratic Candidate

    San Bernardino City Council – 7th Ward – No Democratic Candidate

    San Bernardino Unified School District (In order of most votes rec’d)
    Juan Lopez
    Dr. Margaret Hill
    Sharon “Bobbie” Perong
    Elsa Valdez

    As far as I can tell, the San Bernardino County Republican Central Committee didn’t make any endorsements in these elections.



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