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2020 Los Angeles Voting Guide

I Gave My Kids Their Ballots and This Note:

Hi Guys,

I’ve sent your ballots to you, fill them out and drop them in the mail. Here’s a quick note how I’ll be voting and why. You’ll probably change a few things, you’re both much more progressive than I am. It’s okay. We still love you. Unless you vote for Kanye, then we’re cutting you off.

The ballot is in three sections, so are my recommendations:
Los Angeles
Los Angeles County

LA Community College District Seat 1:

Andra Hoffman. She is competent and mindful and she’s fought for LGBTQ rights, no one will be better. When you’re home for Thanksgiving we’ll talk about how LACCD kept this selection out of the primaries, and how disappointing that is.

LA Community College District Seat 3, 5, and 7:

Gerald Anderson, Nichelle Henderson, and Chris Han or do your own research. I really don’t know enough to make a good voting decision so I’m going to defer to the LA Times. LAist didn’t mention this race but I’d keep checking there. LAist is more progressive than LA Times so you guys will trust them more.

State Assembly 54th District:

Sydney Kamlager earned great scores from the Sierra Club and from Planned Parenthood. I suspect Jones would do the same. She came to the seat in a special election, which always feels like an interesting opportunity. I don’t think she’s bad, I’ve never met her, but she’s not from here and at the risk of sounding provincial, Los Angeles has a unique history that even your father doesn’t understand after 30 years of living here. Tracy Bernard Jones came through Crenshaw High and has taught special education. This means he’s been a teacher, healthcare worker, social worker, and referee all before noon. It’s a feeling and a terrible reason to vote for him. Do your own research, Daddy and I are voting for him – I’ll explain to Daddy that he’s voting this way.

United States Representative:

Karen Bass. Literally cannot and will not waste my breath explaining why you don’t want a Republican documentary producer instead of the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Los Angeles City Ballot

Measure RR:


Supervisor 2nd District:

Holly J Mitchell. I met with her recently and there is no question that she is who we need. I found her to be thoughtful and measured, but still passionate. She’s been fighting for prison reform when no one else was, and she knows how to get things done. Wesson isn’t bad, he just isn’t as good, she’s great. You want to vote for her.

District Attorney:

I liked Gascon enough, but kids – Jackie Lacey is poison. She has to go. Voting for George Gascon is one of the most important things you can do for our city.

Measure J:

Yes. We need to find alternatives to incarceration. We are monstrous in this regard. (see! progressive!)

Los Angeles City Ballot
Los Angeles County

State Measure 14:

No. This isn’t the moment for a $5.5 billion loan. That’s what a bond is, a fixed interest, unsecured loan. No.

State Measure 15:

Hell fucking no. Let me introduce you to the third rail of politics, property taxes. You’re about to experience the second recession of your lifetime and you don’t want to do it amid rubble. I understand that people think they’re taxing the rich. The problem is that the people who think that don’t understand where wealth lies. My hope is that this is misguided, because the alternative is that these people think they’re going to get rid of Prop 13 – and that’s not just misguided, that’s terrible.

State Measure 16:

Yes. Yes. And yes again with your whole heart.

State Measure 17:

Yes. Prison sentences have an end date. We need to allow people to return to society and participate in democracy.

State Measure 18:

Remeber how bugged I was that the LACCD didn’t have candidates on the primaries. How can you vote at 18, and not be allowed to have participated in the primaries? This is an easy yes.

State Measure 19:

No. People are building in fire areas and then rebuilding after the fire everyone expected burns it down. I know this sounds callous, but I’m not willing to pay for someone else’s risk. Oh, also that handing down property thing? It’s not a thing… people who are really rich still won’t pay taxes. This just attacks the upper middle class, which, in California, is middle class because everything is too damn expensive. No, kids, no.

State Measure 20:

Lol. No. You guys are too smart to need an explanation.

State Measure 21:

Listen, I know you’re going to think this one’s good because it’s all, “ooh you can’t raise rent on granny.” But it sucks. Let me tell you who has rent control. Santa Monica, CA. New York City, specifically Manhattan. Can you afford rent there? You can’t, you know why? Because rent control is bullshit. Those people will stay there forever and in order to make up for that you can have a 200 square foot closet for $923 a minute.

I know you think you want more control of these things, but I promise you a free market will give you a better start in life. Hell no on 21. It’s a disaster.

State Measure 22:

I’m working with Yes on 22 so I’m saying yes in a Mom capacity and not in a work one. The work me says that yes on 22 is what the drivers overwhelmingly want and it’s what our communities need as far as safety and economic security.

The mom me (and this isn’t what says) is baffled that people still don’t understand that you’re not going to get a job straight out of high school, work your way to middle management and retire at 63 with a gold watch and a fixed benefit pension. The mom me understands that you work your way through school and find the jobs that fit into your schedule and take you the places you want to be. Pretending that a return to taxis is a good idea is absurd. Yes on 22, it’s what the drivers want and it’s what your mom knows is smart.

State Measure 23:

No. No, no, and no again. The unions put this dumb thing on the ballot every time and it’s never going to work because we’re all too smart to play with the lives of people who depend upon dialysis. It’s not broken, leave these patients alone.

State Measure 24:

It doesn’t matter, it won’t work. No I guess… Yes if you’re eternally optimistic and have never worked in tech.

State Measure 25:

This is the most upsetting measure on the ballot. In theory a yes vote is a vote for cash bail reform. In practice will it allow judges to put people in cages while they await trial with no recourse? I am conflicted here. I want to vote no but the thought of voting hand in hand with bail bond companies disgusts me. This is a compelling argument for no on 25. I am sickened by this. Truly.

I think you guys will vote yes because it makes it seem like something is better than nothing. I think something is going to be a lot worse than nothing, but you need to read about it and make up your own minds. I’ll make up Dad’s mind for him, don’t worry.

EDIT: I was wrong. Very wrong. Vote YES on 25. I had it mixed up.