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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Regarding Yesterday's Scathing Letter From the San Francisco Democratic Club -- Who the Hell Is The San Francisco Democratic Club?

Posted By on Wed, Apr 22, 2009 at 6:30 AM

click to enlarge Will the real Democratic Club please stand up, or bray, or something?
  • Will the real Democratic Club please stand up, or bray, or something?
In our ongoing coverage of the Chris Daly-August Longo race for Democratic Party regional chair, we reported yesterday that a scathing letter detailing Longo's extensive criminal history was sent out yesterday to Democratic insiders by the San Francisco Democratic Club.

Without going into the details of the letter and who asked whom to write it (or not), it prompts a number of questions: What is this club? Who are these people? Why'd you stick your hand in it if it was boiling? (Okay, not that last one).

Those who follow political machinations in this city closely may recall a San Francisco Democratic Club popping up during the last election cycle and making calls to Chinese-speakers on behalf of District 1 Supervisorial candidate Sue Lee. Of course, Eric Mar won the backing of the official Democratic Party -- but, in Chinese, the term "San Francisco Democratic Club" sounds an awful lot like "San Francisco Democratic Party." This doesn't seem to have been an accident.

But that San Francisco Democratic Club isn't the same band of folks who sent out yesterday's letter. In a brilliant flanking move that will prevent moderates from grabbing that official-sounding name and engaging in inflammatory communications, SEIU organizer Jonathan Wright actually chartered his club with the San Francisco Democratic Party -- and, depending upon who you talk to, he's using it to engage in inflammatory communications


Wright claims his club used to be called the District Five Progressive Democratic Club -- and Mike Riordan, the treasurer of the old San Francisco Democratic Club, didn't even know that this move had deftly been made (and he still hasn't deactivated the Web page for his old club. It appears Wright's club has no Web presence.).

Aaron Peskin, the chairman of the San Francisco Democratic County Central Committee, saw the chartering of the new-look San Francisco Democratic Club by progressives as a handy method of ensuring moderates don't pull a move like last year's any time soon. And while Peskin applauds the strategic move, he doesn't claim to have thought this one up -- and laughed off the notion that he's the origin of all cunning plans.

"You have to remember," he says with a sarcastic chuckle, "that Aaron Peskin is in charge of everything."

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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