Sunday, March 29, 2009

Weiss Lies?

After receiving a drubbing in the March 3, 2009 Primary Election, Jack Weiss launched his campaign for the May 19 General Election at a fundraiser hosted by the Los Angeles County Young Democrats.

Weiss's pitch to the audience centered around his representation of their values. Seemingly none of the audience were aware of Weiss's actual values.

See the video to gain a little insight to those values...

I wonder how much support for Jack's campaign will continue to crumble now that more and more voters are becoming aware of dirty tricks like this? Are dirty tricks the 'values' that Jack claims to share with the Democrats?

We'll get the answer on May 19, 2009 when Carmen Trutanich is elected to the Office of City Attorney, and Jack Weiss is left to actually get a job. Now that'll be an interesting experience for the career politician won't it? Perhaps he'll become a lobbyist - after all, it seems to be the only occupation in which he's had any experience; well that and dirty tricks!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Watching The Last 46,000 Ballots

My day began with a welcome email from Walter Moore. The election isn't over, well not completely, and as Walter's missive reminded me, 46,000 provisional ballots remain to be counted.
The City Clerk's Election division is also willing to allow members of the public to observe and so, at Walter's suggestion, I went back to where it all started, 555 Ramirez Street in Downtown Los Angeles.

I was met by Lucy, one of the many helpful workers at the Clerk's Office. My first question was "What is a provisional ballot?" Lucy was kind enough to explain (if only the DMV were so helpful) that these are basically
1) postal (absentee) ballots that were handed in at polling stations,
2) ballots that were cast by persons whose name could not be found at the polling station, or
3) ballots cast by persons who should have voted by mail, but turned up polling stations and claimed not to have cast a postal ballot, and
4) ballots that are damaged or unclear.
There are probably more reasons why a ballot might be considered "provisional" but you get the idea.

The first step, Lucy explained, is to check that the signature on the ballot matches a signature of a registered voter. Below is where that process takes place.

And they really check! Here you can see one of the election workers actually looking up a ballot and comparing the signature in their database to the signature on the ballot.

Once the signature match test is passed, the ballots go to this big room where further examination is carried out:

There's even a section where damaged ballots are repaired so that they can be counted:

Then the hard task of trying to discover the voters' intent begins for those postal ballots where, for example, the dot's in the wrong place - perhaps between two candidates, but more over one than the other. Or, a dot for one candidate has been 'x'ed out and another dot placed for another candidate.

It's a painstaking process,

requiring a skilled eye to make determination.

Postal ballots that were mailed after the deadline, but which arrived postmarked before the day of the election are considered "provisional" and will be counted too, as long as everyone is satisfied that the postal voter has not also cast a ballot at a polling station.

Finally, when all the provisional ballots that have passed all the tests are ready to be counted, they will be taken to this sealed room where a number of counting machines will tally-up the final vote.

I left the City Clerk's Election Division full of praise and admiration for the hard work that all the workers put in to ensure fairness in the count. I am satisfied that when the final count is known, it will be a fair and accurate count. Now I also know why it is that we will not know the final count until March 24, as you can see it is fair from a simple process.

Buy the way, I asked if the May 19 run-off election will be counted here and it seems that the County of Los Angeles will actually count those votes as the run-off coincides with a statewide special election.

So there you have it, democracy in action.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Election Results - A Champion Comes Forward

It's a long story, but the bottom line is that I scored a major victory last night; Jack Weiss failed to cruise to outright victory and now must face Carmen "Nuch" Trutanich in the May '09 election.

Realistically, the best I could hope for was that my candidacy would do more to make voters aware of the danger Jack Weiss presents to democracy than it would do for me.

This election was never "all about me," it was about my life's mission; public service, and I feel I have done the people of Los Angeles a service in making them aware of the need to demand leadership, experience and integrity from City Hall. 31,556 voters agreed with me. Not enough for an outright win, not enough for a run-off, but a very respectable 4th place and more than enough to make Jack Weiss rue the day I threw my hat into the ring.

In the couple of months I've had on the campaign trail, I've gotten to know my fellow candidates really well. No other candidate impressed me as much as Nuch. Frankly, my worst nightmare would have been a run-off with him, as there's nothing about him that I don't like! He is a man of honor, principal and achievement. In the past he did the same job as I currently do; he was an accomplished Deputy District Attorney who founded our Environmental Crimes Division before embarking on a successful and honorable career in private practice.

So it's no surprise that I'm throwing my support behind Nuch and hope you will do the same.

Keep checking back and I'll be posting news here on how we can help to make Los Angeles a better place by electing a true champion of our values.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Election Results - Live as they come in

KABC 790AM will be covering the election.

The City Clerk's Office website will have results updated every 20 minutes starting at 8PM

Here's the link


A picture paints a thousand words, so what more should I say?

The Final Forum

The night before Election Day, KABC hosted a "Pitch Forks & Torches" Tour at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel at LAX.

The room was packed to capacity with motivated voters who gave me an uproarious reception!

My thanks go to KABC's Doug McIntyre and John Phillips for providing all the candidates with a final opportunity to "Pitch" their campaigns to the electorate. It was an important public service and a tremendous boost to all the candidates.

Thanks also to Nigel Skeet from The California Leader for following my campaign and providing me with splendid pictures that really tell the whole story.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Dirty Tricks from Jack Weiss's Desperate Campaign?

Today I was shown a mailer that was sent to registered Republican voters. Jack Weiss features prominently on the mailer, suggesting to me that this is one of his "dirty tricks."

Why is it a "dirty trick?" Well, Jack Weiss is not a Republican, neither is Walter Moore, neither are ANY of the candidates mentioned on the mailer, with the exception of Suzy Evans.

So what's the deal here? Clearly the NBC News RAW poll showing me leading and Weiss trailing miserably despite his now all-spent $1.5M war-chest, Jack has no alternative but the desperate move to try to fool a handful of Republican voters that don't know better, that he's "one of them!"

Of course, Jack Weiss will deny any knowledge of this dirty trick. But Weiss has something of a record of denying knowledge, doesn't he? NBC's investigative report "Laundered Elections," into illegal campaign contributions that flowed to Weiss from Alan Casden's development company quoted Weiss as "not knowing" anything.

When called to testify before a Grand Jury, Weiss also claimed to "know nothing" about a $8,000 bill for "lap dancers" paid for by the Entertainment Industry Development Corporation.

When asked if he had received campaign donations from billboard operators, Jack Weiss "did not know."

When asked if he had received campaign donations from anyone connected with the expansion of the Buckley Private School in Sherman Oaks that he approved, Jack Weiss "didn't know" and said "go look it up on the City Ethics Commission website."

For someone who claims to be smart enough to be City Attorney, there's an awful lot that Jack Weiss doesn't know, isn't there?