David Villa-Lobos, San Francisco's perennial candidate, fired off a letter to Supervisor David Chiu, warning his mayoral opponent: "Do Not Fuck With Me."
The off beat Villa-Lobos claims that Chiu's campaign recently "stormed" down Polk Street asking merchants to remove Villa-Lobos' campaign signs that were plastered in the district. Villa-Lobos told SF Weekly that merchants said that Chiu's volunteers ordered them to remove roughly two dozen signs -- and so they did.
In some cases, Chiu was with the female volunteers who demanded the signs come down, Villa-Lobos said.
Villa-Lobos then went home and typed out an e-mail to his opponent,
calling him a manipulator, a con-artist, and a liar. He told Chiu to
tell his campaign staff to back-off or else.
"I'm going down there on Monday to file an investigation with the Ethics Commission," Villa-Lobos told SF Weekly today.
Chiu's campaign called the accusations, "completely ludicrous."
"All I know is this claim is 100 percent unfounded -- there's not a single element of truth to it," said Nicole Derse, Chiu's campaign spokeswoman. "Campaigns bring strange things out in people."
Villa-Lobos spent Friday putting up new signs along Polk Street, a cost that he says is coming out of his own pocket.
And therein lies the issue. What are the two things people fight about, asks Jim Ross, a local political consultant.
"Money," Ross said, adding that people could figure what the second issue is. Sex.
And signs cost a lot of money, Ross said.
The stress of campaigning, indeed, brings out the erratic and unstable sides of candidates. Add an eccentric character to the field and there's sure to be political drama, he said.
"Running for office is a very challenging thing, asking people for their vote and support is challenging," Ross said. "And under that stress, some people don't react or respond in the best manner."
So why would a seasoned pol like Chiu bother with a fringe candidate like Villa-Lobos, who is like the Alan Keyes of the mayor's race?
"I don't think David Chiu would," Ross said. "I kinda think he's busy -- being the president of the Board of Supervisors and running for mayor takes up the bulk of his waking hours."
Follow us on Twitter at @SFWeekly and @TheSnitchSF