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Alvarez-Gomez Assembly race continues drawing big out-of-town money

Will Lorena Gonzalez’s seat go to the highest bidder?

Gómez has raised nearly $470,000, much of which has come from her organized labor allies.
Gómez has raised nearly $470,000, much of which has come from her organized labor allies.

With much of San Diego media quiet on the costly Democrat-on-Democrat battle to fill the Assembly seat of departed Democrat Lorena Gonzalez we noted here last week, the Sacramento-based CalMatters online nonprofit is filling the gap.

In this Tuesday's election, vying for the Assembly spot are two ex-San Diego city council Democrats, Georgette Gomez, who lost her 2020 Congressional race to Qualcomm heiress Sara Jacobs, and David Alvarez, who lost a high-profile bid for mayor against Republican Kevin Faulconer in 2014.

As the item notes, judging from big money pouring into the race, Alvarez is the choice of big business, with Gomez the favorite of big labor.

"So far, the two Democrats have amassed six-digit totals in direct donations to their campaign coffers. Gómez has raised nearly $470,000, much of which has come from her organized labor allies," reports Cal Matters.

"Alvarez has raised more than $300,000, with sizable contributions from medical providers, real estate firms, oil companies and titans of the 'gig economy.' Lincoln Pickard, a retired contractor who is the GOP candidate in the race, hasn't reported any contributions."

Alvarez has raised more than $300,000, with sizable contributions from medical providers, real estate firms, oil companies and titans of the gig economy.

"Even more has been spent by independent expenditure groups that are not bound by state campaign contribution limits (for a legislative campaign, that’s $4,900 from individuals and $9,700 from committees)."

"More than $670,000 has been spent to help Gómez or hurt Alvarez, while about $535,000 has been spent to do the opposite."

"For at least two decades, as the state's Republican party has descended into near political irrelevance, labor and business have poured money into Democratic-leaning districts where the choice is not between Republican red and Democratic blue, but moderate periwinkle and progressive navy," the CalMatters item observes.

"Often these are the most expensive races in the state."

"Marty Wilson, who directs the campaign operation of the California Chamber of Commerce, called the Assembly race in San Diego an 'attractive opportunity' for business interests who would love to see Gonzalez replaced with a friendlier kind of Democrat," says a CalMatters dispatch posted April 4.

(For longtime San Diego politics watchers, Wilson is best remembered for his years of rough-and-tumble political service on behalf of GOP ex-mayor, senator, and California governor Pete Wilson, to whom he is not related.)

Adds the story: "The fourth biggest spending committee in the race, and certainly the most mysterious one, is called San Diego Families Opposing Georgette Gomez.

"Major funders to the committee are neither families nor from San Diego. They include JobsPAC, one of the chamber-affiliated committees; Californians for Jobs and a Strong Economy, another business-funded committee and a regular funder of the campaigns of moderate Democrats; a self-described real estate developer in southeast Los Angeles County who has been fined twice by the state’s campaign finance watchdog agency while managing the funds of committees in other southern California races; and the former mayor of West Covina."

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Gómez has raised nearly $470,000, much of which has come from her organized labor allies.
Gómez has raised nearly $470,000, much of which has come from her organized labor allies.

With much of San Diego media quiet on the costly Democrat-on-Democrat battle to fill the Assembly seat of departed Democrat Lorena Gonzalez we noted here last week, the Sacramento-based CalMatters online nonprofit is filling the gap.

In this Tuesday's election, vying for the Assembly spot are two ex-San Diego city council Democrats, Georgette Gomez, who lost her 2020 Congressional race to Qualcomm heiress Sara Jacobs, and David Alvarez, who lost a high-profile bid for mayor against Republican Kevin Faulconer in 2014.

As the item notes, judging from big money pouring into the race, Alvarez is the choice of big business, with Gomez the favorite of big labor.

"So far, the two Democrats have amassed six-digit totals in direct donations to their campaign coffers. Gómez has raised nearly $470,000, much of which has come from her organized labor allies," reports Cal Matters.

"Alvarez has raised more than $300,000, with sizable contributions from medical providers, real estate firms, oil companies and titans of the 'gig economy.' Lincoln Pickard, a retired contractor who is the GOP candidate in the race, hasn't reported any contributions."

Alvarez has raised more than $300,000, with sizable contributions from medical providers, real estate firms, oil companies and titans of the gig economy.

"Even more has been spent by independent expenditure groups that are not bound by state campaign contribution limits (for a legislative campaign, that’s $4,900 from individuals and $9,700 from committees)."

"More than $670,000 has been spent to help Gómez or hurt Alvarez, while about $535,000 has been spent to do the opposite."

"For at least two decades, as the state's Republican party has descended into near political irrelevance, labor and business have poured money into Democratic-leaning districts where the choice is not between Republican red and Democratic blue, but moderate periwinkle and progressive navy," the CalMatters item observes.

"Often these are the most expensive races in the state."

"Marty Wilson, who directs the campaign operation of the California Chamber of Commerce, called the Assembly race in San Diego an 'attractive opportunity' for business interests who would love to see Gonzalez replaced with a friendlier kind of Democrat," says a CalMatters dispatch posted April 4.

(For longtime San Diego politics watchers, Wilson is best remembered for his years of rough-and-tumble political service on behalf of GOP ex-mayor, senator, and California governor Pete Wilson, to whom he is not related.)

Adds the story: "The fourth biggest spending committee in the race, and certainly the most mysterious one, is called San Diego Families Opposing Georgette Gomez.

"Major funders to the committee are neither families nor from San Diego. They include JobsPAC, one of the chamber-affiliated committees; Californians for Jobs and a Strong Economy, another business-funded committee and a regular funder of the campaigns of moderate Democrats; a self-described real estate developer in southeast Los Angeles County who has been fined twice by the state’s campaign finance watchdog agency while managing the funds of committees in other southern California races; and the former mayor of West Covina."

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