Opposition to McGoldrick heats up

A supervisor under threat of beingrecalled defended his record Wednesday and said the effort to usurp him is “terribly mean” and being led by a “fringe group.”

An effort to recall Supervisor Jake McGoldrick is moving forward, with proponents confident they have the support to place the initiative for his removal on the November ballot.

A group calling itself the Citizens for Recall of Jake McGoldrick has taken issue with the District 1 supervisor over a wide array of issues, including his support of the Geary Corridor Bus Rapid Transit project and his successful push this year for a Saturday closure of a portion of the roadway in Golden Gate Park.

The group took out an advertisement on Tuesday in a local newspaper announcing its intention to recall McGoldrick and has raised $40,000, according to Paul Kozakiewicz, who is the publisher of a newspaper that covers the district and the media liaison for the recall effort. Kozakiewicz said the group has set a goal of raising $150,000 to fund the recall campaign.

The recall effort was kicked off when a notice of intention to recall McGoldrick was filed with The City’s Elections Department. It requires at least 20 signatures from the district’s registered voters. Among the signers was Howard Epstein, the vice chair of political affairs for the San Francisco Republican Party.

The group would next have to submit a petition for approval by the department, and then, once approved, have at least 4,000 people sign it in order to put the recall on the ballot.

As required, McGoldrick submitted a response on Wednesday that would appear on the petition. McGoldrick’s statement refers to recall proponents as a “fringe group.”

“Don’t let them fool you. The real reason why they are angry is because Jake helped increase the minimum wage, protected renters, worked to improve Muni, helped pass universal health [care] and won paid sick leave for low-wage workers,” the statement says.

“I think they’re being so terribly mean and forget that I have helped in the last six and a half years in making The City a better place to live. I’m very proud of what I’ve been able to accomplish,” McGoldrick said on Wednesday.

If recalled, Mayor Gavin Newsom would appoint someone to serve the remainder of McGoldrick’s term, which would be about a year.

Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin came to his colleague’s defense on Wednesday. Peskin said a recall should be used sparingly, only when there is “manifest abuses or injustices or corruption,” not just because there is an ideological disagreement as is the case in the Richmond district.

David Heller, president of the Greater Geary Boulevard Merchants and Property Owners Association, is a strong supporter of the recall effort.

Heller, who was one of six people to run against McGoldrick for the District 1 seat in 2004, said that McGoldrick is not listening to his district residents, pointing to the fact that they had decisively opposed a Saturday road closure in Golden Gate Park at the polls seven years ago.

He also said McGoldrick has turned a deaf ear to merchants’ concerns over the Geary BRT project, which they fear will have an adverse impact on business.

“[McGoldrick] will not listen. He will not communicate,” Heller said.

jsabatini@examiner.com


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