Hey there, San Francisco.
The February 15 special election is around the corner. And if you live on the eastern side of the city, you’ll be voting for our next District 17 State Assemblymember.
To be clear, this election is a primary (or, a semi-final of sorts). The top two vote-getters in this race will move on to a final election on April 19.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve interviewed all four State Assembly hopefuls—Thea Selby, Bilal Mahmood, Matt Haney, and David Campos. And so, if you’re filling out your ballot and want to know more about the candidates, give them a listen.
One question that I asked all the candidates—What’s something that’s unique or potentially controversial about your campaign?
Here’s what they said:
Bilal Mahmood is a proponent of guaranteed income. He also wants to start charging fentanyl dealers with manslaughter.
“Fentanyl is effectively a loaded gun,” Mahmood said. “The people who are dealing need to be charged commensurate to the crime they're committing.”
Matt Haney wants to penalize counties and cities in California that do not provide services for homeless residents.
“This is not something that can be passed on to only a handful of cities and counties,” Haney said. “It needs to be something that everybody is accountable for.”
David Campos wants college to be free for all Californians.
“I believe that we can do it,” Campos said. “In the end, [it] will strengthen the [state’s] economy.”
Thea Selby said the fact that she’s a woman and a parent sets her campaign apart.
“People might say, who cares? But 70% of the assembly is male. And I think…we should have closer to parity,” Selby said.
If you have questions about the rest of your ballot, the SF Standard put out a good resource the other day that might help. And, if you’re still stuck on your State Assembly vote, Mission Local reporter Joe Eskenazi is hosting a forum with the candidates on Thursday at 6 pm. You can tune in to that Zoom discussion here.
With that…onto the news…
Top story: One thing you should know
On Wednesday, Mayor London Breed and Police Chief Bill Scott revealed the city’s crime stats for 2021, which showed that overall crime was up 11% compared to the previous year.
Homicides increased by 17% in 2021 and vehicle thefts were up 39%. Still, some categories saw drops, like burglaries, which were down 5%. You can see a complete breakdown of the stats here.
“We still have a lot of work to do,” Chief Scott said.
Quick bits: Bite-sized news stories
🇺🇸 San Francisco congressional rep (and House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi announced on Tuesday that she’ll seek reelection for her 19th term in November. Pelosi has represented San Francisco in Washington since 1987. (SFist)
👀 Reportedly, people are using drugs in the outdoor area of the city’s new UN Plaza linkage center, which opened last week to connect residents with (among other things) substance-use treatment. When asked about the claim on Wednesday, Mayor Breed said, “I wouldn’t suggest that something like drug use is allowed, but it’s happening all over the city.” (Chronicle / SF Standard)
⚾️ For the tenth and final year, former San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds failed to receive enough votes from writers to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. (Examiner)
What else I’m reading: Links to browse at your leisure
Man beaten with a bat in S.F.’s Chinatown sues D.A. Boudin’s office, claiming his rights as a victim were violated (Chronicle)
49ers star Nick Bosa is the great-grandson of one of history's most feared mobsters (SFGATE)
Raw Fish Swims Onto Menus Across San Francisco (Eater)
Mission Local ran a heartwarming story on Wednesday about a local couple, Jose and Angelina de Anda, who met dancing in Oakland in 1953 and have been married for nearly 70 years.
“Perdon. Perdon. Perdon, FORGIVE,” they said.
That’s all for today! Thanks so much for reading y’all and a special thanks to everyone who shared The Minute with friends and family yesterday. We are now well past 6,000 subscribers!
See you tomorrow! - Nick B.