Outgoing supervisors vie for sway

With a battle for seats on the Board of Supervisors in November already heating up, The City’s progressive legislators are making what political analysts are calling a power grab by running to sit on an influential party committee in order to affect the outcome of that fall election.

Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin and Supervisors Chris Daly and Jake McGoldrick are among progressives who filed papers by Friday’s 5 p.m. deadline to run on the June 3 ballot for seats on the Democrat County Central Committee, which makes official endorsements and sets policy for the local party.

San Francisco has always been a Democratic city. There are voters who use party endorsements to determine how they vote,” said Corey Cook, political science professor at University of San Francisco.

Mayor Gavin Newsom, who is also a Democrat, but is considered more moderate than a majority of the board members, said the filings seem “like a little bit of a political power play.”

Currently, progressive supervisors are the majority on the 11-member legislative board, which frequently gives them the eight votes needed to overturn a mayoral veto. With seven seats — three held by incumbents — up for grabs this November, the race is being closely watched to see if any moderate candidates are able to take seats from the progressives.

“It seems to me an effort to determine the fate and future of district supervisors and [be] more organized to get district supervisors and use the slate card as a way to advance a political agenda,” Newsom said.

Peskin countered that the mayor has also “handpicked people” including some of his City Hall staff, to run for the county committee, which has 24 elected members.

Moderate contender Mike Farrah, director of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services, took out nomination papers Friday and submitted them later that day as did Newsom’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Health and Human Services Catherine Dodd.

The committee’s endorsement is one of only a few that make a difference in district races, political analyst David Latterman said.

jsabatini@examiner.com

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