My friend, Lynn Harvey, didn't mean to write a guest post, just a letter to me about the California recall. I asked her if I could share part of it here and she said OK. Like me, Lynn can’t stand Gavin Newsom! She wrote, "If I get the chance in November 2022, I will do all I can to replace him with someone much better via an election by the majority instead of a recall by a small stupid minority. After I read your post on August 14 about casting a vote for 'Democrat' Kevin Paffrath to save us from Larry Elder, I felt compelled to share with you the following alternative perspectives to consider."
Vote NO On The Recall And Then Vote For Dan Kapelovitz... Just In Case
by Lynn Harvey
Instead of voting for Paffrath, I decided to vote for Dan Kapelovitz, a Green Party candidate on the ballot because his principles and policies are most closely aligned with my own priorities (getting money out of politics, addressing wealth inequality, passing single-payer Medicare for all, ending the predatory student loan scam, fighting for living wages, labor rights and strong unions, etc.). David Cobb, a frequent guest on David Feldman’s show and a progressive I respect, recommended Kapelovitz. Dan's website assures me that this is not a vanity project for him: https://kapelovitz.com/
I got additional confirming information from an article by Ernie Canning who also recommends Kapelovitz as the best replacement candidate: One Progressive's Guide to the California Recall, By Ernest A. Canning on 8/18/2021, 10:35am PT, Vote 'NO' on recalling Gov. Newsom on the first question and for the Green Party's Dan Kapelovitz on the second. Here's why..
Here are two of Canning's disturbing observations:
As revealed by L.A. Magazine, Paffrath's lack of empathy for those less fortunate than he is reflected by his extraordinarily callous approach to homelessness. Paffrath wants the National Guard to round up the unhoused; then transport and deposit these impoverished human beings--men, women and children-- in open fields.
UCLA Law Professor Gary Blaisi described Paffrath's proposal as "the poorest substitute for a policy on homelessness that I've seen in 38 years," according to L.A. Magazine.
Doing more due diligence, I researched his online presence. I find that Paffrath acts more like a zealous Libertarian than a true Democrat (neither centrist, nor progressive), especially when he rants about how harmful California’s taxes are. There's no way I can trust a guy whose "key messages" on ballotpedia.org are so simplistic and uncertain as these:
Remove the CA State Income Tax on the first $250,000 of income (California would suffer great harm if we lost this essential public funding!)
Solve the Homelessness Crisis (HOW? I seriously doubt if this YouTube multi-millionaire has altruistic intentions in his plan to "solve" this issue. Could he be seeking to enrich himself/ his investment interests with lucrative building contracts by promising to build a token % of low-income housing units?)
Completely Overhaul Education by Creating Future Schools (Is he planning to defund PUBLIC education? What's his connection with charter schools? Is this another investment opportunity and another indirect anti-union strategy?)
Interestingly, on his YouTube channel, HE'S ACTIVELY TELLING HIS AUDIENCE TO VOTE YES ON THE RECALL! Why? How does this protect us from getting a dangerous Republican as governor? Or could Paffrath’s real agenda be to exploit this recall election (and the Democratic Party designation he’s claimed) as his own career opportunity to catapult himself into the most powerful political seat in California?
Everyone that I know is anxiously phone-banking, texting, canvassing, and working as hard as they can to spread the unified message, "Vote NO on the recall."
Yet this self-promoting guy is doing all he can to subvert our collective efforts in order to advance his greedy "wealth-building" agenda. He will NOT be good for Californians.
On his web page, Paffrath gives shout-outs exclusively to right-wing leaders & organizations. (Why doesn’t he recognize any Dems with whom he is supposedly aligned??)
· His first media interview was with Fox News on 5/19/21: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Kiq2n5-bDA
To complete my research, I downloaded his campaign finance information from the CA Secretary of State. Interesting facts emerged. In this excerpt, notice how much he paid out of his own pocket to buy this seat!
I found hundreds of out-of-state donors are trying to choose our governor for us. Only 3 states (DE, MT, & WY) don’t have any Paffrath donors (yet). Texans in particular really love this guy! Here are the top 4 states where his donors are located:
State # of Donations
Finally, if you are still thinking Paffrath is worth endorsing, here are some revealing comments posted by his enthusiastic followers. Do they sound even remotely like any kind of reasonable Democrat to you?? (I bolded the parts that raise alarm bells for me!) This is the enthusiastic and ignorant fan base that he panders to:
Richard Wilson 1 day ago (edited) Kevin, I'm a conservative fiscally and more of a libertarian on social issues. Not sure if you or Larry Elder will get my vote yet. I like a lot of your ideas. SimplyLHN20 1 day ago (edited) I saw your channel months back on wealth building and enjoyed it. Now that you're running again Newsom, your ideas are logical. Newsom should really stopped (sic) giving free $$ away while all the tax payer middle class has to suffer. The idea of wealth building for kids in HIgh school is perfect. Buffalo Bobby 3 weeks ago (edited) Im a registered Republican, live in OC. Im voting for the recall and for Kevin as governor. Im middle of the road. Let go Kevin Brent Hugie 3 weeks ago If I lived in California you'd have my vote. I'm middle of the road and tend to lean republican, but don't agree with far right republicans or far left democrats. You speak with common sense and logic, something I can agree with. Scytherion 1 day ago Not sure why you chose to run for a party that you are not a member of. You might have everyone else fooled, but not me. You are not a democrat. That said, neither am I lol. if you ran as a Republican you probably would get more votes tbh
All this convinces me that supporting Paffrath is a VERY BAD IDEA. (Listening to him talk about his campaign, I couldn't help thinking of another arrogant, "self-made" entrepreneur, Martin Shkrelli, known for hiking up the price of a life saving Aids drug from $13.50 to $750 back in 2015. I'm just sayin...)
Yes, your colleague John Amato makes sense on this issue, as does the Romero Institute's caution that:
...one could easily view this election as an antidemocratic power grab. It could immediately give us a governor who does not reflect the ethos of the vast majority of Californians-- and that person could win with just a small fraction of the vote. We need a governor who cares about the climate emergency, environmental justice, and social issues.
So I'm circulating their following message among all my contacts:
Please help California by voting. To make sure your voice is heard, please do the following:
Check your voter registration status and make sure you're eligible to vote in the recall: https://voterstatus.sos.ca.gov/
If necessary, register to vote BEFORE August 31st. You can register online here: https://covr.sos.ca.gov/
Cast your ballot as soon as you receive it!
Sound the alarm bell with your networks. Amplify the need to vote, and make sure your own friends and family cast their ballots, too.