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SANTEE POWER PLANT REZONING DECISION DELAYED UNTIL JUNE 28

By Miriam Raftery

April 27, 2012 (Santee)—The San Diego Planning Commission voted 4-2 to grant a 60-day continuance to Quail Brush Genco (Cogentrix), delaying a decision on whether to rezone property near Mission Trails Regional Park as industrial space in order to allow construction of a gas-fired power plant. 

Congressman and Mayoral candidate Bob Filner called the continuance request “a chance to propagandize" as the project developer seeks to allay widespread community opposition. Filner has said the power plant would “harm the surrounding air quality and degrade Mission Trails Park – plus, installing a gas-powered plant in an area ravaged by the 2003 wildfires makes little sense.”

WOMEN LEADERS RALLY TO SUPPORT FILNER FOR MAYOR

 

 

April 20, 2012 (San Diego) –Prominent women leaders in San Diego will be speaking out to support Bob Filner’s mayoral candidacy this Saturday.

“Bob Filner is the only candidate for mayor who has spent his career fighting for women's rights,” a press release from the Filner campaign states. In Congress, Filner co-sponsored the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. He is endorsed by the National Organization for Women (NOW) San Diego chapter and has earned an “A+” from Planned Parenthood for his voting record to support women’s rights.

HOUSE REPUBLICANS PASS BUDGET TO SLASH TAXES FOR WEALTHY, RAISES MEDICARE COSTS FOR SENIORS AND STUDENT LOAN INTEREST RATES

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 1, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – House Republicans this week passed a budget that would give massive tax breaks to the wealthy and to corporations, while weakening programs that benefit students, the middle class and senior citizens, including Medicare.

FILNER ANNOUNCES PLANS TO CREATE A “FOOD HUB” FOR SAN DIEGO REGION

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 13, 2012 (San Diego) – “What if we can have food and water sustainability here? “ Congressman Bob Filner, also a candidate for Mayor, asked. Filner reiterated his plan to make San Diego a national model of sustainability for energy, water and food, the unveiled a new vision:  “What if we had a food hub in San Diego?”

His plans provided abundant food for thought at the Forging a Sustainable Future Conference sponsored by UnitedGREEN at San Diego State University earlier this month.   

Filner envisions a food hub with a wholesale and resale market for locally grown healthy foods, similar to the world-famous Pike Place Market in Seattle.  School systems could buy fresh foods for school lunches. Parents and other residents could shop for foods grown by local farmers, and much more.

TAKING SAN DIEGO OFF-GRID: FILNER SHARES PLANS FOR REGIONAL ENERGY INDEPENDENCE AND ULTIMATELY, UTILITY SERVICE OWNED BY THE PEOPLE

 

February 24, 2012 (San Diego) -- What if San Diego produced its own electricity with solar on rooftops and parking garage covers?  Imagine if San Diego became its own utility provider—instead of SDG&E.  

That’s exactly what Congressman and mayoral candidate Bob Filner proposed in a brainstorming session with top regional experts at part I of “Forging a Sustainable Future.”  (Part II takes place March 3-4 at San Diego State University. Filner will be among those speaking.)

The implications of his proposals are staggering.

NEW SPEAKERS AND SPONSORS ANNOUNCED FOR FORGING A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE CONFERENCE MARCH 3-4 AT SDSU

 

Learn how the Navy is going green, plus hear national and local leaders' visions for the future of our region and nation

February 20, 2012 (San Diego)-- Navy Captain Marko Medved, Congressional members Susan Davis and Bob Filner are the latest speakers confirmed to join UnitedGREEN’s Forging a Sustainability Symposium March 3-4 at San Diego State University. They join a long list of distinguished national and international presenters and panelists, including keynote speaker Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

VIDEOS NOW ONLINE FROM CALIFORNIA DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION IN SAN DIEGO

 

 
February 17, 2012 (San Diego) – The California Democratic Party has posted videos on its website of speeches by comedian-turned-Senator Al Franken as well as by Governor Jerry Brown and all statewide office holders at this website:  http://www.youtube.com/user/cademorg?ob=0&feature=results_main .

 

“SPINELESS RUBBER CHICKEN” AWARD PRESENTED TO JUAN VARGAS, CANDIDATE FOR CONGRESS IN KEY RACE FOR EAST COUNTY

By Miriam Raftery

February 16, 2012 (San Diego) – State Senator Juan Vargas came to the California Democratic Convention hoping to find support for his campaign to fill Bob Filner’s seat in Congress.  He won the party endorsement—but has lost support from many here.  A group of activists surprised Vargas in the hall and presented him with a “Spineless Rubber Chicken” award for twice ducking a vote on SB 810, a landmark healthcare reform bill opposed by the insurance industry. 

Insurers reportedly spent $1.46 million to elect Vargas to the Legislature. His Congressional campaign has taken another $140,000 in insurance and pharmaceutical contributions, as ECM previously reported http://eastcountymagazine.org/node/8577

FILNER PLEDGES TO OPEN VETERANS’ OFFICE AT CITY HALL, ASSIST SAN DIEGO VETERANS WITH JOBS AND MORE

“The official casualty count of Iraq and Afghanistan is 5,000 plus killed and about 45,000 wounded…You know how many men and women have approached the VA for help for war-related injuries from those two wars? Almost a million," said Congressman Bob Filner. "We need to take care of these kids when they get back here…Veterans are THE issue for Democrats.”

 

By Miriam Raftery and Mia Mykleberg

February 16, 2012 (San Diego) –Thousands of soldiers are returning home to San Diego County as the Iraq war ends and troop draw downs occur in Afghanistan. 

At the California Democratic Party’s newly formed Veterans’ Caucus, Congressman and Mayoral candidate Bob Filner, former Chairman of the Veterans Affairs Committee in the House of Representatives, laid out detailed plans to welcome home veterans with respect and hands-on help--including establishing a Veterans' Office for San Diego if he is elected Mayor.

2 LOCAL CONGRESSIONAL MEMBERS COAUTHOR BILL TO REQUIRE DISCLOSURE OF CORPORATE CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS

 

 
February 15, 2012 (Washington, D.C.) -- Two San Diego Congressional representatives, Susan Davis and Bob Filner, have taken steps to clean up the secret money plaguing our political system.  Both Democrats have joined colleagues in cosponsoring the Disclose 2012 Act (H.R. 4010) to require disclosure of the corporate and special interest money in politics.

ENDORSEMENT BATTLES IN TWO SAN DIEGO-AREA CONGRESSIONAL RACES STIR CONTROVERSY

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 12, 2012 (San Diego) – At this weekend’s California Democratic Convention, the statewide party issued pre-primary endorsements in three Congressional races but declined to make an early endorsement in two other races.

EAST COUNTY ROUNDUP: TOP LOCAL AND STATE NEWS

 

 
February 9, 2012 --  (San Diego’s East County)--East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County and San Diego’s inland regions, published in other media.  This week’s top “Roundup” headlines include:    
 
 LOCAL

 

  • Grossmont High School teachers vote to explore becoming charter (La Mesa Patch)
  • Fire Chief Augie Ghio chats about state of San Miguel Fire District following release of RFPs (La Mesa Patch)
  • City Council okays livestock for city residents (10 News)
  • A Guide to Understanding the Sweetwater Scandal (Voice of San Diego)
  • San Onofre shutdown costing up to $1 million a day (KPBS)
  • Secrets of the Centennial: How suffrage put progressive town on path to self determination (La Mesa Patch)
  • Light on cockroaches (Valley Roadrunner editorial on Supervisors’ recent actions)
  • Bob Filner to La Mesa: You have a stake in who is mayor of San Diego(La Mesa Patch)
  • Nuke inspections focus on unusual wear on tubes (Sacramento Bee) 
STATE  
  • Federal appeals court: CA gay marriage ban is unconstitutional (AP)
  • Governor signs bill that allows internal borrowing (Sacramento Bee) 
Scroll down for excerpts and links to full stories. 

4 MAJOR MAYORAL CANDIDATES TO DEBATE ON FRIDAY


January 10, 2012 (San Diego) – For the first time, all four of the leading contenders running for San Diego Mayor will debate this Friday, January 13 at 4 p.m.  Bob Filner, Bonnie Dumanis, Nathan Fletcher, and Carl DeMaio have all agreed to participate. 

The event will be held at the U.S. Grant Hotel. In the public interest will jointly sponsor this debate by The City Club, Lincoln Club, Independent Voter Network (IVN.US), and the U-T San Diego.

READER’S EDITORIAL: MEDICAL BENEFITS OF MARIJUANA VS. ALLEGED RISKS

 By Joel A. Harrison, PhD, MPH


November 8, 2011 (San Diego)--In an earlier Op Ed I pointed out that according to the U.S. Constitution, the Federal government has no legal right to impose criminal law on marijuana both grown and sold within the State of California (Reader's Editorial: Medical Marijuana and States Rights, October 25, 2011,
http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/node/7674).

 
Following Federal raids on medical marijuana shops in California, Representative Bob Filner called on President Obama to reclassify medical marijuana as a legitimate controlled substance for medicinal purposes.
  

HOUSE PASSES BILL THAT WOULD ALLOW HOSPITALS TO REFUSE ABORTION EVEN WHEN MOTHER’S LIFE IS AT STAKE

 

Local Republican Congressmen vote to deny emergency care to save mothers’ lives
 

By Shannon Michael
 

October 15, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – The Republican-controlled House this week passed a restrictive measure that would let hospitals refuse to provide an abortion even if urgently needed to save a woman’s life.

 

“The misnamed Protect Life Act is about allowing women to die if they need an emergency abortion,” said Meghan Rhoad at Human Rights Watch. “It is a vicious attack on women’s rights and on the most basic right to life.”

 

Local Republicans Duncan Hunter, Brian Bilbray, and Darrell Issa voted for the bill, H.R. 358, while San Diegio Democrats Bob Filner and Susan Davis voted against it.

SDSU RECEIVES $1.67 MILLION JOBS ACCELERATOR GRANT

October 9, 2011 (San Diego) -- San Diego State University (SDSU) has received a joint grant of $1.67 million for its Jobs Accelerator program from the Economic Development Administration (EDA), the Small Business Administration and the Employment Training Administration (ETA). 

 

“Our number one priority is job creation,” said Congressman Bob Filner (D-San Diego), in announcing the award. “Our region has been in dire need of this type of investment in our economy and our students. In a time when school and local budgets are being cut to the bone, this grant will go a long way to creating the good paying jobs we need, training the workforce, and help us move into a new green energy economy.”

MAYORAL CANDIDATE BOB FILNER DETAILS PLANS TO CREATE THOUSANDS OF JOBS AND MAKE SAN DIEGO “A MORE LIVABLE CITY”

Click to view video of speech highlights

September 22, 2011 (San Diego) –Congressman Bob Filner laid out an ambitious plan for revitalizing San Diego in a speech Saturday at the County’s Democratic Convention. He wants to transform the port into a maritime center to employ thousands of people and replace good-paying jobs for skilled middle class workers that vanished when General Dynamics left San Diego. He aims to make San Diego the alternative energy capitol of America, bringing green jobs to our region. In addition, he seeks to create a more “livable city”, moving redevelopment out of downtown and into communities with greater needs.

 

Why does he believe he can succeed at leading such a major redevelopment effort? Because he already has. “I wrote the Gaslamp plan,” he says of his service on the City Council before his election to Congress.

REPUBLICAN HOUSE VOTES TO SLASH FUNDS FOR DISASTER VICTIMS AS GOVERNMENT FACES POSSIBLE SHUTDOWN

 

3 local Congressional members vote to cut funds for disaster relief
 

Update: A stopgap measure has been approved to fund FEMA partially through Tuesday, but at lower levels than the agency says is needed.

September 23, 2011 (Washington D.C.) – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will run out of funds early next week, leaving victims of recent tornadoes, hurricanes and wildfires without help unless Congress takes action. Republicans in the House refused to approve a stop-gap spending bill passed by the Senate and instead, voted on their own bill with sharply reduced funds for the cash-strapped emergency response agency.

 

San Diego Republicans Duncan Hunter, Brian Bilbray and Darrell Issa all voted for the measure, which failed by a narrow margin. If no measure is passed by both houses soon, the government faces a potential shut-down and disasater victims may be left to fend for themselves.

AT MAYORAL DEBATE, CANDIDATES OFFER DIFFERING VIEWS ON SAN DIEGO'S ECONOMY, JOBS, & MORE

By Jeremy Los

Video by Jack Winemiller

 

Sept. 20, 2011- Congressman Bob Filner and Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher headlined the first mayoral debate of the 2012 election on Saturday.

 

The two major candidates who participated differed sharply on policies, goals, and visions for San Diego during the lively debate during Politifest, sponsored by Voice of San Diego in Liberty Station on Saturday.

POLITICAL WRANGLING: HOW LOW CAN THEY GO? NATIONAL & LOCAL CANDIDATES TAKE SCAPE-GOATING AND MUD-SLINGING TO NEW DEPTHS

By Buck Shott
 

September 14, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) –Top Republican presidential candidates this week seemed to be vying to show who was the most heartless. Ron Paul dissed disaster victims, calling for an end to federal aid to survivors of hurricanes and wildfires. Michelle Bachmann suggested lowering the minimum wage might lure corporations back from overseas. Rick Perry disavowed “compassionate conservatism” altogether. All seek to eliminate or slash Social Security.

 

But the most bloodthirsty of all was the Tea Party crowd at this week’s presidential debate. When CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked whether a 30-year-old man without health insurance should just be allowed to die if he goes into a coma, Tea Party members shouted "Yeah," exhibiting all the zeal of ancient Roman spectators cheering on a a lion vs. gladiator fight.

MAYORAL CANDIDATE BOB FILNER SHARES VISION FOR SAN DIEGO REGION

ECM exclusive interview
By Miriam Raftery
Video by Jack Winemiller

 

September 11, 2011 (San Diego) – Congressman and Mayoral candidate Bob Filner spoke with ECM at last weekend's "Big Blue BBQ" for East County Democrats.

 

He outlined plans to create thousands of new, good-paying jobs for San Diego's region countywide through a revitalized maritime industry and through policies to make San Diego into the “alternative energy capital of the world.”  He also shared his ideas for improving public education and resolving the public employee pension issue as we “turn San Diego towards the 21st century.”  
 

SAN DIEGO LABOR RALLY: "NOT A DAY TO CELEBRATE--BUT A DAY TO AGITATE!"


"I left my job to run for Congress - to fight for you - the working men and women who are the true heart and soul of America. Like you, I have known what it is to stand in the unemployment line. I've been without health insurance...Like you, I will not give up. I will not be invisible...All of us, employed and unemployed must make our voices heard, because we have become the new "Silent Majority."

- David Secor, who aims to run against Congressman Duncan Hunter and represent East County

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Reprinted with permission from OB Rag; Secor comments added by ECM

 

September 6, 2011 (San Diego)--Under gray skies, over 350 people gathered along Broadway yesterday in downtown San Diego at a Labor Day “Rally for the Jobless.” Organized by MoveOn and Rebuild the American Dream, the noon event was designed to gather unemployed San Diegans and put pressure on the White House and Congress for jobs.

POLITICAL LEADERS PARRY QUESTIONS, TRADE BARBS AT POLITICS IN PARADISE

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

August 25, 2011 (Rancho San Diego) – The weather was sultry and the political discourse even hotter at Politics in Paradise last Friday night, hosted by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce in the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College.

 

 Congressmembers Bob Filner and Duncan Hunter, Assemblyman Brian Jones and former Senator Denise Ducheny fielded questions on a broad range of issues, from jobs and healthcare to a new stadium for the Chargers. The evening yielded insights, humor, and surprises.

MAYORAL DEBATE & “IDEA TOURNAMENT” SEPT. 17 AT POLITIFEST

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

August 21, 2011 (San Diego) – Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas debated at county fairs and festivals. Outdoors and free to the public, Politifest 2011 recaptures that spirit. The event, set for Saturday September 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p..m. at Liberty Station in Pt. Loma, will include a mayoral debate, idea tournament, beer garden, civic booths, media celebrities and old-fashioned outdoor fun.

POLITICAL WRANGLING: TUSSLES, PAYOFFS AND TALL TALES

 

 By Buck Shott

 

August 1, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Gearing up for another rough-and-tumble campaign season, our Political Wrangling column is back with answers to questions inquiring minds want to know.

 

  • Which Presidential candidate flunked 13 of 13 fact-checks?
  • What prominent candidates are eyeing Bob Filner’s seat in Congress, in a redrawn district that includes the southern chunk of East County?
  • Which liberal school board member may be living outside her San Diego district, making her potentially ineligible to serve?
  • Which local Republican official admits to paying off folks to pack a council hearing in support of hiking rental rates for mobile home owners?
  • What national office holder is collecting rent from public servants providing security for his family?

 

CONGRESSWOMAN SUSAN DAVIS SPEAKS OUT AGAINST ENERGY BILL THAT SHE SAYS WOULD HURT SAN DIEGO’S CLEANTECH INNOVATION

 

by Shannon Michael

July 21, 2011 (Washington D.C.) – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) has issued a press release blasting an energy spending bill that seeks to gut funding for clean energy, including biomass and solar programs. The bill would hit San Diego hard, since it has a large concentration of clean technology companies, Davis indicated. 

“San Diego has 767 clean technology companies and has become an innovation hub, especially in solar power, energy storage, and advanced biofuels,” said Davis. “If we’re going to remain competitive in the global economy, we must invest in clean energy innovation.” According to the San Diego Association of Governments, the algae energy section alone provides the region with 410 direct jobs and $108 million in economic activity each year.

LOCAL CONGRESSIONAL REPRESENTATIVES REACT TO AFGHANISTAN TROOP WITHDRAWALS ANNOUNCED BY PRESIDENT

 

Poll shows strong public support for plan; Rep. Hunter visits Afghanistan to meet with military officers


By Miriam Raftery

 

June 29, 2011 (San Diego) – A Gallup Poll shows 72% of Americans support President Barack Obama’s plan announced last week to withdraw thousands of U.S. troops from Afghanistan this year. Just 23% opposed the troop drawdown plan, and some want to see an even faster troop withdrawal.

 

Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-El Cajon), a veteran of the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars and member of the House Armed Services Committee, visited Afghanistan this week and met with General David Petraeus. He has voiced support for troop withdrawals, citing erosion of public support. But he called for a shift in focus toward counter-terrorism utilizing special operations forces, intelligence gathering capability and air assets.

FEMA BACKS DOWN, RETRACTS REFUND DEMAND TO LOCAL FIRESTORM SURVIVORS

 By Miriam Raftery

June 7, 2011 (Potrero) – Following intense media scrutiny and letters from federal and local elected officials, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has retracted its demand that Veronica Lytle of Potrero pay back over $1,600 in disaster funds that she received for damage to her home in the 2007 Harris Fire.

 "When I finally opened the letter I just couldn't believe it!" Lytle told East County Magazine (ECM).

 But the fate of 36 other local disaster victims who have been asked to refund money to FEMA remains unclear.

HOUSE REBUKES PRESIDENT OVER LIBYA CONFLICT

 

Measure drew bipartisan support in Congress, though local representatives split votes down party lines

 

June 7, 2011 (Washington D.C.)—By a 268-145 vote, the House of Representatives rebuked President Barack Obama for not seeking Congressional authorization for military conflict in Libya. House Resolution 292, authored by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) asked the President to provide Congress with justification for U.S. involvement in NATO-led military strikes. 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES PASSES BILL THAT WOULD STRIP WOMEN’S RIGHT TO CHOOSE, REDUCE PRIVATE INSURANCE OPTIONS FOR ABORTION COVERAGE

 

By Jeremy Los

 

“This bill is an unprecedented assault on women’s health care. For the first time, restrictions would be placed on how women with private insurance can spend their own dollars in purchasing health insurance.” – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego)

 

May 31, 2011- Women’s rights are under siege as Republicans in control of the House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 3. The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act would sharply restrict access to abortion.

 

Championed by Rep. Christopher Smith (R- NJ), the bill passed  the House with 251 "aye" votes, of which 235 were Republicans--including San Diego Republicans Duncan Hunter and Darrell Issa. (Brian Bilbray (R-San Diego) abstained from voting, while local Democratic representatives Susan Davis and Bob Filner voted "no.")

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