Endorsements for the June election

18 May

Though the primary election isn’t until June 8th, vote by mail started last week and plenty of people are casting their votes (or trying to figure out how to vote) so I thought it was time to post my endorsements for the June election. I’m going to breeze through the statewide initiatives and officers because there’s plenty of information out there, but feel free to ask specific questions or provide comments. And if you haven’t registered (or re-registered after moving) you still have until May 24th to do so to be able to vote on June 8th.

Statewide Ballot Initiatives

  • Prop 13 (Seismic retrofits): Yes
  • Prop 14 (Top two primary): No
  • Prop 15 (Public financing of elections): Yes
  • Prop 16 (Requiring 2/3 vote on public power): No
  • Prop 17: No

If you want more info on why to vote yes or no on any of these initiatives, check out Courage Campaign’s progressive voter guide.

Statewide Officers

The incumbents are all basically running unopposed so those were easy. As for Jerry Brown, he might as well be running unopposed. Though I’m not super-excited about his campaign or some of the things he’s been saying (like no new taxes), none of the other candidates excite me either. I’ve resigned myself to him being the nominee and he’s clearly better than Whitman or Poizner, so I might as well start supporting him now.

For the contested races, I feel strongly about all of my choices. Janice Hahn has been an effective LA City Councilmember who will bring a city-focused vision to the capitol. She’s serious about the position of LG, unlike Gavin Newsom who’s just looking for the next way to move up the ladder and publicly derided the position when he was still running for Governor. Kamala Harris has managed to bring creativity, ingenuity, and care for people to the office of the District Attorney in San Francisco and I know she will do the same for the state. The choice for Insurance Commissioner was a bit more difficult because I like both of the candidates, but I’ve been really impressed by Dave Jones during his time in the Assembly and think he’d be great in this position. Tom Torlakson has long been my choice for Superintendent, but I like him even more since hearing that when his daughter was in high school, he read every book she read so they could discuss them. That shows a real dedication to education.

Local Races

Alameda County Superior Court – Victoria Kolakowski

I’m working on Vicky’s campaign, but even if I wasn’t, I’d vote for her, just as I did in 2008 when she first ran to be judge. I feel so lucky that I’ve gotten the opportunity to get to know Vicky over the past several months. I immediately knew she was dedicated and experienced, but over time I’ve learned about her level-headed temperament and compassion, which are very important qualities to me in judges. She is the only judge in the race, having served for several years as an administrative law judge, and she is the only one in the race with extensive civil law experience. Why is this important? Well, governors tend to appoint prosecutors to be judges and it’s important to have a diversity of legal experience on the bench because many cases are not criminal. Issues like divorce, family conflicts, employment issues, etc. come before the court frequently.

Vicky would also bring a different kind of diversity to the courts. In Alameda County, only 29% of the judges are women, and zero judges are openly LGBT. When Vicky wins, she will make history by becoming the first transgendered trial court judge in the entire country. There’s no way I can explain this as eloquently or powerfully as she does, but having a transgendered judge on the bench would be huge for the transgendered community. Transgendered people often struggle with the legal system, with issues ranging from changing their names to being the victims of violence so its important for this community to be represented well. Though I am not a person who votes for someone simply because of gender or sexual orientation, Vicky brings both diversity and experience so she is the clear choice. Please cast your vote for Judge Victoria Kolakowski to help make history.

UPDATE: The East Bay Express did a great and thorough profile of Vicky today that everyone should check out.

Alameda County Supervisor, District 3 – Wilma Chan

I have to admit that I’m not super excited about any of the candidates in this race. I’ve seen them all speak at several endorsement meetings. Beverly Johnson was disappointing every time, and though Harold Lowe has a lot of great energy, he spent a lot of time criticizing the current Board of Supervisors but didn’t provide concrete, realistic solutions to the problems they face. So that makes this endorsement choice somewhat easy. Wilma Chan has a clear grasp on the issues that the County is facing, and in this time of deep budget crisis, she’s the only one in the race who’s ready to jump in and deal with complex County issues.

Alameda County Board of Education – Joaquin Rivera

The County education elected representation is set up in a pretty weird way. We have an elected Superintendent and an elected Board of Education. Though I’ve been following this race, I’m still not entirely clear about the division of labor and power between the board and the superintendent. What I am clear on is that Joaquin Rivera, with his experience as an educator and his time on the Berkeley School Board, is the best choice for the board of education.

Alameda County Democratic Central Committee, Assembly District 14 – Andy Kelley, Edie Irons & Elizabeth Echols

Many people don’t even know about the existence of this office, but if you’re a registered Democrat, you get to vote for your representation on the County Democratic Central Committee. Your reps vote on local endorsements, represent the county at the statewide convention (and vote on state endorsements there), and coordinate get out the vote efforts for Democrats. This year, the Assembly District 16 race is uncontested so most Oaklanders won’t be voting for the ACDCC. But if you’re in the small part of North Oakland that’s in Assembly District 14, you’ll have the opportunity to vote for some great candidates. You can vote for up to 6 people out of the 7 candidates who are running, but I’ve chosen to only endorse three. It’s not that anything’s wrong with the others who are running – it’s mostly that I couldn’t decide who to leave off of an endorsement if I endorsed 6. So I’m sticking with the three people I know best, who I’m confident will work hard for the Democratic Party and Democratic candidates.

Andy Kelley is the secretary of East Bay Young Dems (EBYD), and as of today, a very recent graduate of UC Berkeley. The Central Committee has historically been pretty old but that’s changing, and Andy will bring great energy to the committee. Edie Irons is an incumbent and the past president of EBYD. I’ve known Edie for years, since we worked together doing fundraising for the DNC in 2004, and I’ve always been impressed by her energy, commitment, and willingness to stand up for an issue or candidate, even if her position is unpopular. Elizabeth Echols is also an incumbent and ran the Oakland United Democratic Campaign headquarters in 2008. If you phoned for Rebecca Kaplan, you know how high the energy was in that office, and much of that was because of Elizabeth’s incredible work. She’s also been a leader in fundraising for the ACDCC, the importance of which can’t be overstated. So please vote for Andy, Edie & Elizabeth if you live in the 14th AD.

52 Responses to “Endorsements for the June election”

  1. Jesse May 18, 2010 at 11:22 am #

    Thanks Becks! I was totally just going to ask you for exactly this analysis! So helpful to democracy-lovers like myself🙂

    • Becks May 18, 2010 at 11:24 am #

      You’re welcome!

  2. dto510 May 18, 2010 at 11:50 am #

    Thanks for sharing your picks. I disagree with your endorsement of Tom Torlakson. Mr. Torlakson is a tool of the teachers’ union who has consistently opposed efforts to improve educational accountability. Gloria Romero has authorized multiple education reform bills including California’s Race to the Top effort, which was opposed by Mr. Torlakson, who would rather reject federal funding than increase districts’ flexibility in assigning teachers. Vote for real educational improvements, vote for Gloria Romero!

    • Becks May 18, 2010 at 11:53 am #

      I could not possibly stomach voting for Romero. Education reform can be good, but Race to the Top was terrible, and what did it get us? Nothing. No federal money could have been rejected because it was never coming.

      • dto510 May 18, 2010 at 12:01 pm #

        Increasing flexibility of teacher assignments is a good idea whether there’s federal money or not – the seniority system is a failure. And most of the Race to the Top funds haven’t been assigned yet, California can still get some!

        • Becks May 18, 2010 at 12:04 pm #

          You’re delusional if you think we’re going to get any of those funds. That’s about as likely as BART giving up on the OAC and admitting they were wrong all along.

          Also, Race to the Top had plenty more restrictions than “increasing flexibility of teacher assignments.”

    • Max Allstadt May 18, 2010 at 7:17 pm #

      Boo on Torlakson and Romero!

      Larry Aceves has my vote. Having seen him and Torlakson side by side, it’s very clear to me that Aceves understands the troubles of California schools at the district level and at the classroom level.

      At the forum I saw, Aceves was also giving answers that were far less rehearsed, and clearly more internalized and experience based than anything that Torlakson said.

      I was there with a private school special-ed teacher and asked a very specific question about special-ed policy and testing. Torlakson dodged it. Aceves understood and answered very directly.

      Aceves also has a far less ambitions and calculated affect than Torlakson did overall. Genuine warmth. Torlakson was performing a task. Aceves was in the room with us in a much more immediate and connected way.

      • Becks May 18, 2010 at 7:31 pm #

        Now choosing Aceves I can understand. I like Aceves a lot and would not be disappointed if he won.

        I guess ambition just doesn’t turn me off from a candidate.

        • Ralph June 7, 2010 at 10:49 pm #

          This discussion has been most helpful. Torlakson might as well be sleeping with the teachers. In a system which desperately requires change, he is not my man. It appears that for as much as I love Gloria, Larry may have the likeability factor to implement change.

  3. Naomi Schiff May 18, 2010 at 3:01 pm #

    I’m with you on Torlakson! The Race to the Top thing is not worth the time. I am disgusted by the scapegoating of teachers when what we need to do is cut back on administrative waste.

  4. Brad May 18, 2010 at 3:05 pm #

    Why is everyone against Prop. 13? From what I can see, it looks like just a way for older homeowners to do major work on their homes, seismic retrofitting, without having their property taxes adjusted for reflect the increase in value of their home. I.e., it lets them to major work on their houses while continuing to avoid paying their fair share of property taxes. Isn’t it just another perk for older people at the expense of younger people?

    Also, what’s so bad about Prop 14?

    I agree with you on the other props. Public financing is good. Props. 16 and 17 are disingenuous power plays by PG&E, and the insurance industry, respectively, disguised as “benefits” to the voters.

    • Brad May 18, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

      Sorry, I meant to say, why is everyone FOR prop 13, because right now I’m NOT!

      • Becks May 18, 2010 at 4:01 pm #

        Prop 13 is the only initiative that I don’t have strong opinions about so I’ll let someone else defend that.

        As for Prop 14, it just makes elections more costly and makes them run longer. Most Assembly and State Senate districts are firmly Democratic or Republican. So usually you have a primary election and the Dem or Repub that wins the primary wins the general. People don’t have to raise funds again and go into a vicious general election against someone from their party.

        Let’s take our state senate district. Loni Hancock and Wilma Chan were the top vote getters in the primary. So they again would have had to face each other in November. And the results likely would have been the same, but with them having to raise and spend a bunch more money and voters having to deal with negative campaigning.

        For the few districts that aren’t firmly Dem or Repub, it’s likely that a Dem and Repub would each get to the general as it is now so nothing will really change.

        I can’t think of one good reason to vote for Prop 14. It puts more money into politics and creates more fighting within parties. Who does that benefit?

        • Brad May 18, 2010 at 5:25 pm #

          But isn’t there a state wide redistricting commission that is gearing up? Putting that together with Prop. 14, won’t it totally change politics in California?

      • Ralph May 21, 2010 at 12:16 am #

        Brad, I am with you. Long time owners already save bigtime on property taxes. They like to spin Prop 13 as penalizing younger / new owners and will tell you that corporations receive a huge benefit, but the truth is long-term homeowners derive a huge benefit from Prop 13. Now they want more gravy. Puh-lease.

      • len raphael May 29, 2010 at 3:10 pm #

        Didn’t see how prop 13 would change the existing law. There already is a statewide exclusion from property upward reappraisal for seismic upgrades.

        13 Prop 13 makes that same exclusion permanent whereas current law only excludes the upgrade reassessment for 15 years for current owner.

        Brad, if anything this Prop slightly benefits younger property owners (and eternal life biz entities) more than older individual owners who aren’t going to be around long enough to see an effect from Prop 13

        Ask a bunch of older oakland property owners, and most of them will tell you they have not done any seismic strengthening of their buildings other than water heater straps. Nada, zilch.

        Much more likely to find younger owners, especially ones from the last bubble, who spend the bucks to do seismic.

        Irrelevant to buyers of condos, sngle fam, office and apt buildings, built or totally rehabbed in the last 20 years (not sure of the date building codes changed) because appraised values get reset upon sale.

        Oddly, seems that market price for smaller buildings, homes is not higher for those with seismic upgrades. Just look at listings for old single fam homes. never see seismic upgrades as a feature.

        Oakland should resume it’s program of waiving the permit fees for basic seismic upgrades of single fam houses. eg. for bolting the houses to existing foundations, and installing plywood bracing. Should do the same for earthquake gas cut off valves on all buildings.

        If that were widely publicized, might save a bundle when the quake hits by improving the quality of the upgrade work that is done without permits.

        Or just set a low fee = direct fully benefited hourly cost of the inspector. Hmm, maybe not such a good idea for residents to know what city employees are paid.

        -len raphael
        temescal

        • len raphael May 29, 2010 at 3:17 pm #

          For the Nov governor election, are you voting for Jerry B mostly because he’s not Meg W ?

        • Becks June 1, 2010 at 10:22 am #

          Yeah, Meg Whitman would be awful. Jerry Brown probably won’t be great, but he’ll be far better than she would be.

  5. Becks May 18, 2010 at 5:32 pm #

    Unless the redistricting commission can produce magic, I’m very skeptical that they’ll be able to make more than a few districts more competitive. Take the Bay Area and the Central Valley for example. How would you draw competitive districts there without drawing absurd districts where people had no relation to each other and lived in far away counties?

    • Ralph May 21, 2010 at 12:11 am #

      political redlining and forcibly removing every other person and replacing them with someone with a different political bent. reform i can support.

    • Ace June 7, 2010 at 5:17 pm #

      True but we might loose NorCal’s only Black legislative district!

      • Ralph June 7, 2010 at 9:57 pm #

        I think that losing NorCal’s only Black legislative district is a good thing. My gut tells me that the this district is controlled by certain members of the dominant race with their preconceived notions of what needs to be done to help the “non-dominate race.”

  6. Becks May 19, 2010 at 12:27 pm #

    The East Bay Express did a great and thorough profile of Vicky Kolakowski today that I encourage everyone to read: http://www.eastbayexpress.com/ebx/a-hot-seat-for-alameda-county-judge/Content?oid=1753299

  7. Brad May 19, 2010 at 6:43 pm #

    I still think Prop. 14 is probably a good idea. The way it’s set up right now, there is low turnout for primaries, and only more extreme voters turn out. So for the Nov. election you get a Democrat who is extreme and a Republican who is extreme. And, as you’ve pointed out, in most cases the district leans heavily one way or another. So we end up with an extreme Democrat or an extreme Republican.

    But if many districts lean HEAVILY one way or another, then under Prop. 14 in those districts wouldn’t we actually have either two Democrats or two Republicans as the top vote getters in the primary? Therefore, the November election would turn into a race between a moderate and an extreme member of the same party.

    And in those districts that really are competitive, then nothing would really change from how it is today. Those districts will probably continue to send one Democrat and one Republic to the Nov. election, but that’s what they do already. And aren’t these districts the ones that already send the less extreme legislators to office? Because the candidates are always going after the elusive independent voter?

    I think there’s a reason that both extreme Republicans and extreme Democrats are lining up against Prop. 14. They’re afraid of losing their electability. They don’t give a damn that they’ve totally failed the people of California. It’s another example valuing “ideologically purity” to the detriment of actually getting something done.

    I don’t know. I vote Democratic and I have my whole life. And I have yet to be convinced that Prop. 14 is a Republican scheme to take over. Right now we can’t get a damn thing done anyways. It’s time to try something new.

    • Becks May 24, 2010 at 8:33 am #

      Calitics gave another good reason to oppose Prop 14: “It decreases (small-d) democracy by allowing only 2 parties into the general election, offering fewer choices to voters. Third parties, like the Greens, will have no hope whatsoever of making the general election ballot. It will make it more difficult to turn red districts blue. Progressives should reject Prop 14.”

    • Ralph May 24, 2010 at 9:06 am #

      It would be nice to have some moderation. The continued election of far right and far left wingnuts makes actual change impossible as neither is willing to concede any ground for fear of upsetting the base.

  8. len raphael May 20, 2010 at 12:08 am #

    kamela harris. can’t say that i followed her time in sf closely, but i had the impression that a wide spectrum of people there breathed a sigh of relief that she was moving up and out because she was scary soft on crime even by sf standards.

    was she the official responsible for sf’s now revised policy of sending young illegal alien drug dealers to rehab instead of prison or was that another official’s decision?

    -len raphael

    • Ralph May 21, 2010 at 12:21 am #

      Kamala Harris – soft on crime and lets her personal views interfere with her ability to apply the law. Last I checked the death penalty was law in the state, but it is never on the table with her.

      • Becks May 24, 2010 at 8:35 am #

        Kamala has said that even though she opposes the death penalty, she’s still enforce the current law. Plenty of DAs and judges oppose particular laws and still enforce them.

        Curious Len & Ralph – who are you supporting for AG?

        • Ralph May 24, 2010 at 8:57 am #

          Yet, she has refused to seek it in SF when there was at least one time when it was clearly warranted. A gang member, armed with an AK-47, kills an officer and he gets to spend the rest of his days in jail eating 3 squares. I haven’t decided. But on the plus side KH does not support “Cannibus” (sic) 2010. So her selective application of the law may work in my favor.

  9. len raphael May 24, 2010 at 12:02 am #

    The Republican candidate for Attorney General got an unexpected plug from the NYT’s Magazine today, and Harris a slight ding. Steve Cooley is the 3rd term elected DA for Los Angeles, not exactly a Republican stronghold, and hecka more diverse than SF. http://da.lacounty.gov/history/cooley.htm

    The NYT article discusses the concrete support that Cooley has given to reducing the excesses of the 3 strikes law.
    He was elected on that platform and has carried thru.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/23/magazine/23strikes-t.html?hpw

    “IF STEVE COOLEY wins the Republican primary for attorney general, on almost every issue — most visibly the death penalty — he’ll run to the right of his probable Democratic opponent, the San Francisco district attorney Kamala Harris. But on three strikes, Cooley will run to Harris’s left”

    Three strikes is a way overreaction to the releases of prisoners by an overworked system. When my spouse caught a guy breaking into her car, before she id’d him for the cops, she had to consider whether he’d get put away for life for breaking into an unlocked car.

    When i read about Harris’s alleged mismanagement of the druggie lab tech scandal in SF, my thought is she’s not up to the job of running a very large state Justice Department. Most of what the Attorney General does is administrative, not setting state policy on hot button issues.

    -len raphael

  10. Ralph May 24, 2010 at 5:04 pm #

    I do wish there were some better candidates for governor. It is a shame when the only D candidate was probably governor before some of you were in first grade.

    That being said, I must question the judgment of anyone who advocates for new taxes for clearly your tax burden is not high enough.

    • Becks May 24, 2010 at 5:36 pm #

      I’d be very happy to pay higher taxes to save many state and local programs.

      • Ralph May 24, 2010 at 6:14 pm #

        Can we selectively apply tax increases? I am curious though when you say that you would pay higher taxes, what do you think is a fair individual tax burden? (I assume this varies by individual.)

        Wouldn’t we be better off if we reduced individual income rates to spur spending. A crazy uptick in demand encourages hiring which would hopefully result in more people with spending power.

  11. len raphael May 24, 2010 at 7:21 pm #

    Most Bay Area residents would never consider voting for Steve Cooley, the multi term Republican DA for Los Angeles since 2000. He got an unexpected plug from the NYT Magazine the other day in a article discussing CA 3 strikes law. Cooley is the only elected official in CA to run and win office on a platform calling for major changes in the 3 strikes law. Brown didn’t. 3 strikes is even more of a sacred cow than prop 13 for public officials.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/23/magazine/23strikes-t.html?scp=1&sq=cooley&st=cse

    Cooley is the only DA in CA that made reduction in 3 strike sentences a written policy of his office.

    The AG to a large extent is an administrator of a large dept. Harris’s delayed and possible defective response to the druggie crime lab tech in SF raises question as to how good an administrator she would be at the state level.

    -len raphael

    • Ralph May 24, 2010 at 7:59 pm #

      Cooley is worthy of my vote. Sadly, he is not going to show up on my ballot.

      • Becks May 24, 2010 at 9:22 pm #

        Cooley has made attacking medical marijuana patients and providers a top priority for the LA DA, which I think is wrong and a huge waste of resources. I’m sure this will make Ralph want to support him even more, but it means I could never vote for him, even though I’m glad he has measured opinions about 3 strikes.

        • Ralph May 24, 2010 at 9:36 pm #

          I love it when a person just gets me. For the record, if MM were regulated at the federal level, everything would be cool and the gang. I am not a fan of the prescription mills.

          On a lighter note, I could marry this Cooley fellow…

  12. len raphael May 24, 2010 at 11:14 pm #

    didn’t know that cooley made attacking mm patients high priority. seems inconsistent with his position of keeping people out expensive jails for minor non violent acts.

    effed up. there i’d vote for him and end up in prison. bummer man.

    but as becks says about KM and the death penalty, is there any reason to think SC would disobey a state law legalizisng mj ?

    I’m with Ralph on this. ultimately it has to be a change at the fed level.

    -len raphael

    • Ralph May 25, 2010 at 12:01 am #

      I don’t know much about cooley’s beef with MM but it may have something to do with the fact that there are more MM dispensaries than ‘bucks, Tullys, Coffee Bean, Seattle’s Best, and Peets combined in LA. I think some were a little upset. I would be too if there were a 15 year getting high near my child’s elementary school. (and don’t kid yourself; underage kids getting their high on in joint joints)

  13. len raphael May 25, 2010 at 12:32 am #

    ralph, link me to that stat.

  14. Ralph May 25, 2010 at 12:45 am #

    context comes from an NPR news story. LA’s pot house on every corner is oft cited as what is wrong with the Gen X for Dope Mvmt. i believe that earlier this year LA council voted to restrict the number of smoke houses per corner.

    • Ralph June 7, 2010 at 1:00 pm #

      Len, there was another NPR story about LA pothouses this am (June 7)

  15. len raphael June 5, 2010 at 7:48 pm #

    Local Prop 16 (the pge sponsored prop) supporter list includes Oakland Jobs and Housing Coalition, and the Oakland Builders Alliance. Somehow this prop is tied to the construction industry, but not sure how/why contractors and developers would care. if anything, possible lower utility rates or more green power would increase opportunities for development. Carlos P or Clinton K?

  16. Ralph June 6, 2010 at 10:28 am #

    Prop 17 is good for drivers and worthy of a YES on Prop 17.

    If insurance companies can share driver history to confirms the new driver is a good risk then why would one be against this proposal. I assume that insurance companies won’t harm existing good drivers.

    As it is new drivers, high risk drivers pay high rates and after a certain number of events are no longer good candidates for Geico, Nationwide, Allstate etc and are only candidates for Mercury.

    • Becks June 7, 2010 at 10:06 am #

      Prop 17 has nothing to do with safe driving and everything to do with more profits for insurance companies.

      I have a nearly perfect driving record – one accident a decade ago and I’ve never received a moving violation. Yet since I haven’t had car insurance for the past 2 years, if I tried to get insurance after the passage of Prop 17, my rates would be much higher. Prop 17 penalizes those who choose not to have a car for a while and those who can’t afford a car and car insurance.

  17. Ralph June 7, 2010 at 10:55 am #

    I don’t think anyone is arguing anything about safety.

    Prop 17 is about consumer choice. As it is, drivers are held captive by insurance companies because they lose accrued discounts. If you want to switch insurance companies you are penalized because the new company has no idea of what type of risk you are so they automatically rate you as a high risk.

    As it is, new drivers, young drivers, people who go without insurance for whatever reason, and people who switch companies are going to have higher rates. This is true today and will be true two days from today. The question is why should people who maintain coverage be penalized if they want to switch to a company that offers a lower rate.

  18. len raphael June 7, 2010 at 10:56 pm #

    ralph, i thought auto insurance companies legally shared claim’s and accident history? or is that medical insurance co’s?

    most times i’ve switched carriers, i got a lower rate. eg. switched from aaa to amica 8 probably before becks got her driving license, and saved about 30%.

  19. Ralph June 7, 2010 at 11:27 pm #

    len, admittedly, i haven’t looked into switching recently. I think the last time I looked would have been 4 years ago. I think it would have cost me slightly more so i kept my provider.

  20. Naomi Schiff June 8, 2010 at 10:01 am #

    The trend to corporate-sponsored entirely self-interested initiatives should be thwarted with a no vote on 16 and 17. The endorsement of 16 by the local development interests was unconscionable, anti-green, and short-sighted. They should be ashamed of themselves.

  21. Ralph June 8, 2010 at 4:20 pm #

    If that means the end of Dick Lee, then I “can get with that.” Personally, I would like to see the end to all hairbrained, half-a**ed ballot measures, the discontinuation of the language of no new taxes, and unfunded mandates, but I live in CA where this sort of thing is apparently some sort of birthright.

  22. Max Allstadt June 8, 2010 at 6:15 pm #

    Ralph, calling Richard Lee “Dick” out of contempt is really obnoxious. I get that you don’t like pot in a town where everybody else does. But nobody calls him anything but Rich or Richard. It’s kind of infantile, really.

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