About RPA | 2010 Richmond City Elections
Election Results: Richmond Moves Forward
Thank you, everyone who participated in talking to your neighbors, phone-banking, canvassing, leafleting, drawing cartoons, writing, contributing money, putting up signs, entering data, and of course voting. It all added up. You all made a difference.
We will take a few days to recharge our batteries. In the next few weeks we will be trying to analyze this election and figure out how we should organize to keep Richmond moving forward. We invite you to send in your ideas and join the effort.
November 2 was a wonderful day for the Richmond community! We re-elected our Green mayor, Gayle McLaughlin and elected Jovanka Beckles to the City Council. Along with Corky Booze, Jeff Ritterman, and Tom Butt we have an opportunity to begin the transformation of Richmond into a city that considers first and foremost the welfare of the citizens of Richmond. An important first step will be to reach out to all of Richmond communities and help them come together for the good of all.
Although I didn't win, I am very proud of how well we did with my bid for a city council seat and I want to thank all the people who worked so hard on my campaign and all the citizens who voted for me and my program for the children of Richmond. I was pleased to see, that although I was a new candidate, my ideas resonated enough that other candidates made education a major part of their platforms.
My plan for the near future is to continue to work within the community and with the Mayor and City Council and others who are committed to my program to begin to implement some of the ideas I put forward during the campaign. I hope to be a catalyst to begin the process of empowering communities to begin to create intergenerational local institutions which will help everyone grow and thrive.
Once again, I am very thankful to all of you who helped me and voted for me.
Together we will create a "Richmond for the Children".
The people of Richmond are the real heroes of this election. They were able to see through the fog of millions of dollars worth of campaign mailings and well financed smear campaigns. In part this was the result of the effort of all the people of the RPA and others who volunteered so many hours to go door to door, phone, and work the polls on election day.
Congratulations to Corky on his election and Jim Rogers on his re-election. Thank you to Jeff Ritterman and Tom Butt and Mayor McLaughlin all of whose encouragement and endorsement gave me both strength and insight.
The election results show that there are still deep racial divisions in Richmond. While the results show hopeful signs of these divisions breaking down we have a lot more work to do. I will work hard for all residents to move us to "One Richmond" by making sure that the city pays attention to the needs of the African-American and Latino communities which have been hardest hit by the economic collapse,
Thanks to the amazing volunteers and campaign efforts of the Richmond Progressive Alliance and other progressive organizations and individuals, we have embarked on a new era for Richmond. Through their votes, the people of Richmond have shown that the power of big corporations is not unbeatable. While we witnessed some of the most negative smear tactics ever, we stood strong with dignity and integrity.
updated figures from the County Clerk's office as of 11/15/10
Make a Difference TODAY
Today's election is one of those rare times in politics when we really do have a chance to make a difference and shape our future. We can continue on a path that is remaking Richmond with the simple strategy of empowering Richmond residents.
Richmond will be rebuilt by actions like neighbors getting together to create and build the Solano Playlot, the neighborhood watches that are making the city safer, the community turnout to Juneteenth and Cinco de Mayo, the Urban Tilth gardens, or the Solar Richmond job trainings. City government can help by attracting and promoting the 21st century economy to Richmond at the same time that it respects its history and guards its natural beauty. We can turn our schools into places of superior education and community centers. City officials can help by being models for what we want our kids to be and do.
We can make a difference by electing Gayle, Jovanka, and Eduardo. Even when we're outspent 100 to 1, even when the opposition relies on the politics of fear and smear -- we can still elect candidates dedicated to building on the strengths and resources of Richmond. This requires all of us. In this last week of the campaign, we need more people sharing truth and optimism with our neighbors via phone banks, distributing literature, and talking. Be part of the change. Make a difference.
We need the most help on Election Day, Tues., Nov. 2.
Call the RPA office (412-2260) and tell us when you can help in two hour blocks.
Opposition to the Casino and Establishment Candidates in Richmond's Religous Community
See the letter by Pastor Ulis G Redic, Pastor Mt. Zion Baptist Church, published in the October 27 Richmond Globe
See the commentary by Rev. Alvin C. Bernstine "The politics of dis-ease; A pastoral comment on Richmond's mayoral campaign" published in the October 27 Richmond Globe
Opposition to the Casino in Environmental Community
See the letter to the City Council from the Native Plant Society.
The Attack on Gayle
see RPA Newsletter #34
RPA recommendations on the Ballot Measures
The "No Position" reflects either that there are strong differences within the steering committee, or the feeling that the ballot measure does not properly address the real problem.
19 (Legalization of Marijuana) No Position
Real Leadership or WHICH WAY?
In every candidate appearance John Ziesenhenne asks for votes claiming he is a "leader." Is he? What is a leader?
In this issue we explore this question. We ask our candidates their views on leadership. We look at what kind of leadership Nat Bates and John Ziesenhenne provide. We look at the progress Richmond has made under the leadership of Mayor Gayle Mclaughln and compare this to other Bay Area cities.
Gayle, Jovanka, Eduardo understand that leaders must be visionaries, they must think into the future while solving the problems of the present. In contrast to the other candidates they do not think of leadership as connecting to the people in power. Rather they understand the strength and value of building movements, of empowering ordinary people, to stand up for what the city needs.
An example--While every politician now tries to take credit for the additional $114 Million that Chevron will pay the city, these significant funds are the result of a movement that was built in Richmond to demand that Chevron pay its fair share. It was a movement of the people that got Measure T on the ballot and passed. It was a movement that started the campaign for Utility Tax fairness and against Chevron's phony tax reform proposition earlier this year. As a result of these actions, Chevron knew that the only way it could make the problem go away was to come to the table.
It is true that the whole city council voted for the utility reform measure (and that unity was important for victory). But the campaign was organized and led by the progressive movement in Richmond--not by the incumbents who think that leadership is taking credit for what others have done.
What is Leadership?
We asked our candidates for their thoughts on leadership.
Leadership is taking a stand for what you believe is right even though you may be criticized or attacked. In a democracy leadership is putting yourself and your ideas forward where people can judge for themselves and make informed decisions. Leaders don't follow trends, they create new ones.
"Wrong Way" Bates
Nat Bates makes much of what he will do with his supposed connections in Washington. The question is: Besides what they have done for him personally, what have his connections brought Richmond?
"No Way" Ziesenhenne
Jovanka Beckles for City Council
We will only move forward as One Richmond.
My priorities include: empowering the community to combat crime and violence by reducing poverty, creating healthy, living-wage, job opportunities, providing support for small businesses, and building unity across cultures, ages, and neighborhoods.
I have worked in Richmond for 13 years as a Children’s Mental Health provider, coordinating multi-disciplinary teams of teachers, probation officers and social workers to improve the lives of children and families. I am a small business owner, a Planning Commissioner, and a former Economic Development Commissioner. I am an African-American Latina, born in Panama, and came to the US when I was nine.
Richmond is hurting from powerful global economic changes and the failure to properly address these internationally and nationally. Courageous leaders with integrity can tackle our chronic problems of poverty, violence and despair. Employing a holistic approach, we can become the beloved community of Dr. King’s dream.
We need leaders who share our aspirations and understand our needs. We need leaders who listen and respond. With your vote, I can be one of those leaders. Because I take no corporate money for my campaign, I am accountable only to the people of Richmond.
Join me in building the prosperous, safe, and healthy city that we deserve.
Eduardo Martinez for City Council
The Richmond Progressive Alliance is proud to announce its endorsement of Eduardo Martinez for the Richmond City Council in November Election. With the re-election of Mayor Gayle McLaughlin and the election of Eduardo and Jovanka Beckles, Richmond has the opportunity to elect a city council which stands for the residents and is independent of the corporations and developers who have so much power in this city. All three candidates pledge not to take any corporate or developer funds.
Eduardo is a long-time Richmond teacher, recently retired so he can serve the community in other ways. He brings to the campaign his expertise on education and ideas about how the city can help in breaking the gridlock which is destroying our public school system and threatening the future of our kids.
He is a firm believer that schools are a major part of the reputation and attraction of a city. “As a Richmond City Council member I see myself leading efforts, policies, and mobilizations that respond to Richmond’s many educational needs that are not satisfied by the School Board." The theme of his campaign will be to a make Richmond a city for children.Some ideas on education Eduardo puts forward:
Eduardo can be reached at
or his cell phone at 510-712-4934
For more information see Eduardo's website
Eduardo taught in the public school system for 18 years. (Downer Elementary and Sheldon Elementary) and has been a Richmond resident for16 years.
He was the co-organizer of Richmond Area March for Education (from Richmond to Sacramento) 2004.
He serves on the West Contra Costa County Unified School District Community Budget Advisory Committee, and on the Steering Committee of the East Bay Sanctuary Committee.
Eduardo is President of the Richmond Chapter of the Mexican American Political Association (MAPA), a member of the NAACP, and a former Steering Committee member of the Parent Leadership Action Team (PLAN).
Beginning the Campaign with Direct Contact
More than 50 supporters of Gayle and Jovanka gathered at the RPA office on Saturday morning June 12 to begin the hard job of insuring victory in November. Many others, who could not make that time have volunteered to help in the campaign.
We expect Chevron and developers to put big money into trying to defeat Gayle in her bid for re-election as Mayor and Jovanka's candidacy for City Council. We all know that every issue from getting good jobs, fair taxation, getting clean air, and stopping projects like the Point Molate Casino, to getting bike paths depends on having a Council that stands up for residents rather than groveling for corporations.
Our strategy is to start early, and work hard to talk to Richmond Residents face to face.Some canvassers are taking areas in their neighborhood. We are providing packets with campaign literature, "walk sheets" based on the official registration lists and other materials. Our aim is not just to drop off literature but to have good discussions and find others willing to help in this important city campaign.
Remember--there is a direct connection between the issues we care about and who gets elected. A pro-Chevron city council could approve just about any revised EIR Chevron submit, shove a casino down our throats, and return us to the days of corrupt Richmond politics
Kick-off to Re-elect Mayor Gayle McLaughlin
About 200 people, from all parts of Richmond attended a meeting where Gayle McLaughlin announced that she was seeking a second term as Mayor. The meeting featured nationally known leaders of change, Van Jones, former green jobs advisor to President Obama, Nativo Lopez-Vigil. National President of the Mexican-American Political Association and Dr. Jeff Ritterman, vice-mayor of the Richmond. Music and poetry were provided by Richmond's Shiloh singers.
See article in Richmond Confidential
"We are building a better Richmond together and in many ways. We are promoting economic development and jobs. We are fostering community peace and prevention of crime. We are building a community with social and economic justice. We are building a cleaner, greener, healthier community. And we are creating a more democratic, participatory, transparent city."
"We have the people who want to work and know how to do the work. We have to restructure economic life, political life, and social life in America and that is the pathway our Mayor, Gayle McLaughlin has taken us on.
We need to change the hearts of ourselves and everyone else to build a trusting, caring, self-reliant community. And Gayle McLaughlin is the one who will lead us in that direction."
"Sometimes obvious things are not said and when we have world class leadership like we have in this city doing visionary things, doing creative things that meet the moment, we don’t even recognize it.
Richmond is not the only city struggling economically. Richmond is one of the few cities that is meeting the challenge both in the short run and the long run.
Change is hard. It goes up and down. It goes backward and forward. You have good days and bad days. The only way that you will fail to get to the change and fall all the way back to despair is if you let go of your hope.
You have a hopeful leader, you have a hopeful grassroots project, you have hope in Richmond. Keep the hope alive and keep leading us into the new economy."
"There can not be immigration reform until we have Marshall Plan for working people , for African Americans, for Latinos throughout our country to make sure that everyone who wants one can have a job—a good job—and a home … not in danger of being taken by the banksters."
Nativo's speech on youtube
For more pictures see Gayle's website
For more information on the speakers and the event see RPA Newsletter-- Click here.
Her combination of leadership, dedication, hard work, incorruptibility, and commitment to principles have made all Richmond citizens stand taller.
Gayle insists that city government should serve to unify its citizens and advance their interests over those of multi-national corporations and developers. Her hard work and attention to detail has meant Richmond has made strides in protecting our air, water, property values, and most importantly, our kids while attracting new green jobs to the city.
The politics of real change that Gayle represents has drawn wide attention. Nationally known leaders are speaking at her rally. They know that what is happening in Richmond is leading the way for what must happen in the rest of the country.
See Gayle's new election web site www.MayorGayle.net
photos Tarnel Abbott, Margaret Jordan, Mike Parker