2004 General Election

The following is a tabular summary of my voting preferences for the 2004 General Election to be held November 2, 2004. I am a resident of San Francico's District 1 (the Richmond District), and have only researched the contests in which I am eligible to vote. §

United States

Candidates
President & Vice-President Michael Badnarik & Richard Campagna www.badnarik.org
Senator James P. "Jim" Gray www.judgegray2004.com
Representative (District 8) Jennifer DePalma www.depalmaforcongress.com

California

Candidates
Assembly (District 12) Chris Maden www.lpsf.org/maden04

Propositions
1A Protection of Local Government Revenues NO locks in sales tax; strange property tax stuff
59 Public Records, Open Meetings. NO This claims to add a constitutional endorsement of the public's right to visibility into the government's workings, but includes so many exceptions it's laughable. It upholds all existing statutory exceptions to public records and open meetings, and completely exempts the Legislature!
60 Election Rights of Political Parties. NO but not because it doesn't go far enough
60A Surplus Property. NO ties hands of legislators; what is done now?
61 Children's Hospital Projects. Grant Program. Bond Act. NO bond issue
62 Elections. Primaries. NO This is a totally bogus scheme. Smaller parties won't even appear on the November ballot, and any larger party with multiple viable candidates will have its vote split and lose out. Worse still, most of the decision in any contest will be made in the lower-turnout primary election rather than the higher-turnout general election. For real election reform see www.approvalvoting.org and www.fairvote.org.
63 Mental Health Services Expansion, Funding. Tax on Personal Incomes Above $1 Million. NO new tax
64 Limits on Private Enforcement of Unfair Business Competition Laws. NO I'm sympathetic to the motivation of this proposal, but we need to be very careful when tinkering with the ability to bring lawsuits, and the proponents have not provided substantial evidence for these restrictions. Also note that 64 includes a provision to change how money won by the State in lawsuits it pursues can be spent, which is unnecessary.
65 Local Government Funds, Revenues. State Mandates. NO The proponents are backing 1A instead, though I also oppose that proposition.
66 Limitations on "Three Strikes" Law. Sex Crimes. Punishment. NO The basic idea of this proposal is more sane than the existing law, but there's just too much tinkering going on. In addition to requiring the third strike to be a "violent or serious felony", this proposal changes the definition of "violent or serious", which applies even outside of the Three Strikes rule, so that fewer crimes are considered violent or serious; and at the same time it introduces new One Strike and Two Strikes rules to require life sentences for some crimes on the first or second offense.
67 Emergency Medical Services. Funding. Telephone Surcharge. NO new tax
68 Non-Tribal Commercial Gambling Expansion. Tribal Gaming Compact Amendments. Revenues, Tax Exemptions. NO 68 and 70 are both just nutty. We're being asked to step in the middle of negotiations between the Governor, tribal casinos, and non-tribal casinos. 68 is from the non-tribal casinos, and 70 is from the tribal casinos; both "authorize" the Governor to "negotiate" specific terms with ultimatums if he doesn't do it or the other parties don't agree. Both 68 and 70 are one-sided proposals that are bad for the State. Let the Governor's negotiations stand unless we want to make a real, sensible change to the law, which neither of these proposals does.
69 DNA Samples. Collection. Database. Funding. NO invasion of privacy; violation of due process
70 Tribal Gaming Compacts. Exclusive Gaming Rights. Contributions to State. NO 68 and 70 are both just nutty. We're being asked to step in the middle of negotiations between the Governor, tribal casinos, and non-tribal casinos. 68 is from the non-tribal casinos, and 70 is from the tribal casinos; both "authorize" the Governor to "negotiate" specific terms with ultimatums if he doesn't do it or the other parties don't agree. Both 68 and 70 are one-sided proposals that are bad for the State. Let the Governor's negotiations stand unless we want to make a real, sensible change to the law, which neither of these proposals does.
71 Stem Cell Research. Funding. Bonds. NO Besides my default objection to raising taxes and growing the government bureaucracy, 71 locks this funding to a specific kind of research rather than going to whatever medical research is actually the most effective. It's a play by pharmaceutical companies on the current attention this one issue is getting.
72 Health Care Coverage Requirements. NO Your employer has nothing inherently to do with your healthcare. Your trade union would be a better source for health coverage (or even your credit union, for that matter). It makes no sense to force employment agreements to include health coverage, and it's even worse to add another level of state bureaucracy to the cost of it all.

San Francisco

For detailed ranked-choice ballot results: www.sfrcv.com/results.htm

Candidates
Community College Board 1. undecided  
2. undecided
3. undecided
4. undecided
Board of Education 1. Starchild I'm not yet a parent, but I am opposed to the "Diversity Index", which sends successful students to unsuccessful schools across town.
2. undecided
3. undecided
4. undecided
Supervisor (District 1) 1. David Heller www.electdavidheller.com
2. Leanna Dawydiak www.voteleanna.org
3. Lillian Sing www.lilliansing.com

Measures
A Affordable Housing Bonds NO If we want to help more people buy homes in San Francisco, we should be repealing rent control and encouraging more condo conversion rather than issuing general-obligation bonds (which will have to be paid back twice over with higher property taxes!) to implement inefficient bureaucratic development projects.
B Historical Preservation Bonds NO  
C Health Service System NO  
D Changes to City Charter NO  
E Police & Fire Survivor Benefits NO This is a feel-good measure, but where does the money really come from? Ultimately this is an executive-branch personnel issue that shouldn't be on the ballot.
F Noncitizen Voting in School Board Elections NO This sounds reasonable because non-citizens do contribute to the tax base that supports our public schools. However, this measure only extends voting to parents of schoolchildren, not all taxpaying residents. Ultimately, voting should be a privilege of citizenship. California and the United States need a sane and open immigration policy, but opening loopholes for non-citizens is no way to encourage immigration reform.
G Health Plans for City Residents NO  
H Naming the Stadium at Candlestick Point NO This is just silly. Sure a name change would be annoying and even mildly offensive, but the city made a deal with the team and we shouldn't be wasting time and money dealing with it here. Everyone will still call it "Candlestick" informally anyway.
I Economic Analysis of Legislation NO Let's get government out of economic planning. This measure will grow the City government with a new office that could not and should not have any binding influence on Board decisions, so there is no reason to believe that the Board will even listen to any analysis that the office does.
J Sales Tax Increase NO The Mayor is asking us to "pay our fair share" to reduce the City's billion-dollar deficit. Nonsense. These taxes are bad in principle, besides putting an extra burden on residents and businesses and driving shoppers out of the City.
K Business Tax NO
L Use of Hotel Tax to Preserve Movie Theaters NO This is a scam. Real theater preservationists are against this measure. It names a specific private organization (which doesn't even exist yet) to receive a big chunk of our too-high hotel taxes.
M Housing Preservation NO This measure has been withdrawn, but it may come back in a special election that will cost us up to one million dollars. It's absurd to prevent a landloard from modernizing his building and increasing the number of housing units downtown just to preserve a few rent-controlled apartments.
N Withdrawing U.S. Military Personnel from Iraq NO I have to admit I'm tempted, because I do agree with the sentiment and it's nice to live in a city that feels a sense of international urgency. But the City should not be expressing an opinion not held by all its residents, and the Supervisors really should not be wasting our time and money putting it on the ballot.
O Use of Sales Tax Funds NO This measure is irrelevant if J doesn't pass. But it's irrelevant even if J does pass because it's only "a non-binding recommendation" anyway. The Board has again chosen to waste our time and money on a frivolous ballot proposition.
AA BART Earthquake Safety Bond NO This is a billion-dollar bond issue that has to be paid for twice over through unknown tax hikes in the coming years. Let BART get its budget under control and pay for whatever retrofits it needs through its own ticket revenues.


Sampson Synergetics

Copyright 2004 by Justin T. Sampson