By Miriam Raftery
October 7, 2022 (La Mesa) – A mudslinging flyer in the La Mesa mayoral race sent by Kristine Alessio’s campaign contains numerous false and misleading statements regarding Mayor Mark Arapostathis.
In a phone call today regarding the mailer’s claims, Arapostathis told ECM, “None of these things are true.” ECM has fact-checked many of the statements and found numerous deceptions in Alessio’s claims.
Most blatantly false, the flyer falsely states that Alessio is “The clear choice for La Mesa Democrats.” While the race is nonpartisan, Mayor Arapostathis is endorsed by the San Diego County Democratic Party and Alessio, a registered Republican, is endorsed by the San Diego County Republican Party.
Paid for by the Alessio for Mayor 2022 campaign, the flyer further claims Arapostathis “refuses to lead on important climate issues” and claims he is backed by oil and gas special interests. In fact, Arapostathis voted for the city’s Climate Action Plan and also voted for the city to declare a climate change emergency. Araposthatis says, “I’ve never taken money from oil or gas.”
The flyer further claims the Mayor supported “out-of-control development” after receiving support from developers. Alessio, however,has taken more that $5,000 from principals in her her family’s own development company. View Alessio financial statement.
Mayor Arapostathis says, “The only money I’ve taken so far is from individuals – parents and other people who know me." His most recent financial statements show no obvious major developments to Arapostathis from develpment interests. View Arapostathis financial statement.
Arapostathis further states, "I’ve never voted for big development that doesn’t fit in.” He adds that he’s voted for some projects that were mandated by the state’s density bonus requirements, but voted against other major projects.
Alessio’s mailer contended that the Mayor “raided COVID relief for renters so he could redirect funding to corporations.” La Mesa’s COVID-relief funds were used to help renters, as well as businesses struggling due to the pandemic.
Alessio also claimed she has a “100% record in defending a woman’s right to choose” even though as a former La Mesa Councilwoman, her only elected office, no measure dealing with abortion ever came before the Council for a vote.
Arapostathis, a teacher, told ECM he’s spent “31 years trying to teach people to be kind and to have integrity.” On Facebook, he elaborated, “When things are printed about you that are completely false your instinct is to fight fire with fire,” but adds, “I will never go negative. Integrity is something I teach my students and use as a guide in my life.”
Bogus Information in Republican Candidate Mailers
Thank you so much for trying to keep candidates honest. The least we can expect from our elected leaders is HONESTY in all their messages to voters.
There are other candidates in our area, who also are masquerading as Democrats, posing as having values their own party denies. I hope you keep your investigative reporting focused on them as well. Thank you for your diligence.