For a hyper political blogger, Trish Spencer’s nascent campaign for Mayor has already begun paying dividends and she hasn’t even populated her website with content yet!
First she launches out of the gate with amateur hour typically reserved for the very young and very politically naive by declaring that her main reason for running was because she was “disconcerted” by the land exchange that funneled much needed money into the school district to fix the failing pools at both high schools but also that:
Our children and families need a mayor who really supports public education.
Let me let that sink in for a bit.
Yes, Trish Spencer is running for Mayor, a role that has very little — if any — over sight over the Alameda Unified School District, the entity that oversees public education in the city of Alameda, because she wants to “support public education.”
Now, a rational person would say, but wait, if your goal is to support public education, wouldn’t you, oh, I don’t know, actually sit on the School Board? A good question, but nothing shall derail the Trish Spencer Train. As I’ve mentioned before, anyone running for a City Council seat with a public education platform is essentially running on a platform of rainbows and ponies. No one will disagree that it’s a good thing, but it has very little to do with the actual job description.
There was a bit of drama (popcorn worthy, yes) on Trish Spencer’s Facebook page on Friday. The CSEA Director (CSEA is the non teacher employee bargaining unit in Alameda) posted on Trish Spencer’s celebratory “I turned in my paperwork” post that:
I’m very disappointed in your decision to run for Mayor. I have called you a couple of times and you chose not to call me back, therefore I will start by putting it in your Facebook that I can not support you.
To which Trish Spencer responded back:
Hi Cindy! I’m sorry you won’t be supporting me. I got your texts discouraging me from running. Labor supported Bonta’s run for higher office while he was Councilmember; Labor does dual endorsements. I didn’t have endorsements my first election but I still supported CSEA, and I will continue to do so. I needed to hurry and get my papers filed so I could meet Elaine at SFO – she’s back from Denmark! I’ll call you later.
I just want to point out the maybe not so obvious here. While Trish Spencer views this as a singular person not supporting her, I’m not sure if she realizes that the impact may be a lot larger than just one person given the role of the individual in the larger labor organization. Also according to her response she still believes there is room for “dual endorsements.” I’m not sure this is possible in a two person race. This is all further complicated by the fact that Marie Gilmore already has AEA and by extension probably CSEA’s endorsement. AEA has already run fundraisers for Marie Gilmore and other candidates as well.
A few posts later the CSEA Director responds back with this:
Trish, you know I encouraged you and supported you to run for School Board. You have represented us very well. I saw you on Tuesday in our house of Labor and you never mentioned that you were going to run for Mayor. As for Bonta running for a higher office, Labor encouraged him to run since it was an open seat. [emphasis added]
This post was “liked” by AEA president Audrey Hyman. Now it could be that she was liking the first two sentences and much more shouldn’t be read into it, but that would be boring. I placed in bold the part that was probably the most concerning to the labor groups that supported her in the past. On the same day that she pulled the papers to run for Mayor she visited the “house of Labor” and didn’t even drop a hint that she would be running for elected office. Seems weird, right?