Politics Blog

What was the Coast Guard thinking?

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SFist has posted a link from BoatingSF that shows the path of the Cosco Busan, based on freely available data that even amateur boaters have. The Chronicle reports that the Coast Guard knew the ship was headed for the bridge. The Vehicle Tracking Service on Yerba Buena Island has sophisticated radar and GPS gear and can watch every damn boat on the Bay; why didn't anyone tell the captain and pilot to get back on course?

The oil spill -- how to help

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Well, in the end we need to recognize that this was a disaster waiting to happen with thousands of ships coming into the bay carrying nasty fuel oil and a Coast Guard that appeared to be lackadasical about the potential for disaster.

But for now, sfist has a nice handy guide on how you can help.

Newsom keeps dropping

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New election results are out, and Mayor Gavin Newsom's winning percentage continues to drop. He's gone from the high 70s in early returns to 68 percent now. Quintn Mecke is now in second place, with almost 8 percent, and Harold Hoogasian is in third with 6.5 percent. Read more »

Latest returns support Yes on A/No on H campaign

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Guardian illustration by Danny Hellman, from our Oct. 31 cover story
The big story of this election was the improbable triumph of environmentalists over car culture and grassroots activism over downtown’s money, a story being played out in the likely approval of the Muni reform measure Prop. A and lopsided defeat of the pro-parking Prop. Read more »

Water trumps Bush

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What does it take to override a wartime Republican president’s veto? Water, apparently.

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Thirty five years ago, facing a rising tide of discontent over polluted water, Congress overrode d Nixon’s veto of the October 15, 1972 Clean Water Act. Read more »

SF sues its elections vendor

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San Francisco may have to wait weeks for election results and undergo an complicated ballot-counting procedure, but we may not end up having to pay for it. That's because the city is suing its election vendor, ES&S, for breach for contract, City Attorney Dennis Herrera and other city officials announced this morning. His press release follows:

Newsom's party

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By David Crockett
In what was maybe the least surprising news story since that guy from ‘N Sync announced he was gay, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom seemed headed for an easy reelection, even with the sparse returns on election night, when he and his supporters gathered at the Ferry Building.

“The best is yet to come,” Newsom told his followers, at the beginning and end of his speech, adding, “As great as we are, we can still be so much more.”

The Yes on A victory

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Lots of celebration at the Yes on A/No on H party at El Rio. Robert Haaland, who ran the field campaign, was justifiably exuberant -- the passage of A and defeat of H, which appears all but certain, was a demonstration that even in a low-turnout election, progressives can prevail. The labor-and-environmental-backed campaign did an extensive absentee-voter effort, extensive get-out-the-vote and effective mail. It helped that Sup. Read more »

Low, low turnout

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The traditional wisdom is the the progressives lose in low-turnout races -- and turnout here looks terrible. John Arntz, the elections director, says it looks like 26 percent turnout, only around 100,000 votes. And yet, on the key progressive measures, we're doing really well.

More from City Hall

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Gavin Newsom has obviously won re-election, although we don't know his total yet. But the other winners tonight are Aaron Peskin and Chris Daly.

Peskin's Prop. A is an almost certain winner -- it's ahead 51-49 in the absentees and that's the most conservative of the votes, so it will win handily. His Prop K, the measure limit new billboards, is winning, too, overwhelmingly (60-40).

What this means is that Peskin defeated a rather vicious campaign by Don Fisher to smear him and the Board of Supervisors; in fact, the attacks on the Board didn't seem to work. Read more »