Blogging Bayport Alameda

September 13, 2006

City Council Candidate Profile, part 1 of 6, Pat Bail

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Lauren Do @ 6:46 am


Pat Bail is running for City Council, there are only two seats for six candidates.

Pat Bail is running as part of a slate of three people and includes: Doug DeHaan and Eugenie Thomson.  The official website for the slate is Action Alameda.  The slate profiles her thusly:

Pat has lived in Alameda for many years, has worked on a variety of local and state issues and is a past Alameda Times Star “Woman of the Year.”  As the mother of three children and the grandmother of two, she has focused primarily on issues involving children, youth and sports.  In a close 2004 election, Pat lost her bid for a slot on the Alameda City Council by only a handful of votes.  Since then, she has been concerned and outspoken about the direction that the current Council has taken on a variety of local development issues and its non-responsiveness to citizens.  Pat is direct, honest, hardworking and passionate about ensuring that Alameda grows in a way that preserves the unique character and quality of life on the island.  She is a “citizen’s citizen” who will be an outstanding representative of the people.

If almost 300 votes consitutes a “handful” then yes, she only lost by a “handful” of votes, and the ironic thing is she would have unseated one of her slatemates had she not lost by this “handful” of votes.

The Journal reported about her and the slate:

So far, one three-candidate slate has emerged, led by sitting council member Doug deHaan — who is running for mayor — and two challengers, Pat Bail and Eugenie Thomson who are seeking seats on the council.

Bail, who ran unsuccessfully for council two years ago after spending more than $100,000 of her own money, said the three were running together in an effort to make local government more transparent and responsive to city residents.

Medastyle recorded this little tidbit for posterity about Pat Bail as well.

Pat Bail was also one of the people profiled in the SF Chronicle story about revisiting Measure A.  Possibly because she was the driving force behind the Keep Measure A site.  Which only serves to fuel the alarmist fires about a possible exemption to Measure A, with this choice language:

That’s what we risk with a repeal of Measure A. Powerful forces are continually at work to undo the will of the people and usurp Measure A protections. These forces intend to turn our island into a replica of Manhattan – a swath of concrete canyons and towering high-rise structures. They view each land development project as an opportunity to turn back the time of Alameda to pre-Measure A days when development ran rampant and without concern for the quality of life of Alameda citizens.

And Pat Bail chose this to say in the Chronicle story:

“I will admit to being militant about this,” said one Measure A defender, longtime resident Pat Bail. “We found out a long time ago that if you’re not militant, it’s going to get rammed down your throat.

“If we don’t, we’re going to wind up in an urban rabbit hutch.”

Bail said there is no call to critique Measure A because it is still doing the job voters intended and does not by itself stand in the way of creating a mix of housing at Alameda Point.

“I have no problem at all with anybody moving to this town — color, stripe, age,” Bail said. “I have a problem with too many people. I have a problem with people outside the community telling what’s best for us.”

A Sun article from the last election about Pat Bail.  And an Oakland Tribune article referencing Pat Bail’s opposition to local artist Janet Koike coverting a building into seven live/work lofts:

Edward Murphy and Pat Bail, longtime Measure A proponents, appealed and took their arguments to the City Council, which in July 2004 approved the project.

 I stumbled across this website written by Tom Billings, who provided an excellent opinion article, he says about Pat Bail:

Among the candidates for City Council, one stands out that should NOT be elected. Pat Bail has made clear her conviction that Measure A is sacrosanct and should not be modified in any way. That unrealistic bias would hamper rather than facilitate the efforts of the Council to develop and propose an alternative to Measure A that would serve Alameda’s future best.

Lamentably, Ms. Bail has been able to outspend the other Council candidates as evidenced by the plethora of her visual sound bites that clutter lawns throughout the community and other lavish promotional activities. Hopefully, Alameda voters will see past this egregious attempt to buy a Council seat and elect others who are equipped to give Alameda what it, rather than they personally, actually needs.

This guy ran Pat Bail’s campaign in 2004, I wonder if he is going to do the same this year…

Thanks to Mike McMahon’s site, we have a series library of articles regarding the 2004 campaign:

Alameda Journal article on Pat Bail.  Did you know that Pat Bail wasn’t firmly in the Anti Theater crowd…or maybe she has changed her tune in order to get more supporters, because she said this to Susan Fuller:

A garage would be a help to Park Street, whether or not the theater is viable.

However, I am a little confused by this statement:

The city could make it better by giving a few bones, like a police presence on Webster Street so women feel comfortable walking down the street and not getting accosted by men hanging out at the bar.

Granted, I wasn’t here two years ago, but was there a big problem with women getting harassed by men hanging out at the bar(s) on Webster?  Or has Pat Bail just not set foot on Webster street since the naval base closed?  And the phrasing of that…”giving a few bones” like the West End is some stray dog that needs table scraps?

More articles about how much she spent. And then a recap of spending and how it affected the election results.

The Green Party had this to say about Pat Bail:

Pat Bail is an advocate for maintaining Alameda’s small town qualities. However, her lack of service on public boards, and her unrefined and contradictory policy ideas do not meet our expectations for council consideration or Green support. Bail’s public comments also suggest an unwillingness to listen to divergent views, a characteristic that is antithetical to the role of a city councilmember.

And of course, I have written a few things about Pat Bail, which can be found here, herehere, and here.

Finally, last but not least, her own candidate statement:

Change is in the air. We need to change the majority on the City Council to achieve it. (1) We need more open City government by doing away with the Closed Session meetings of the City Council except in a very few special cases. Design of major developments must be available to the public from the start. (2) Change the rules of how the Council hears public comment. (3) Rein in staff and make them accountable. (4) Get expenditures under control. Negotiate contracts with developers that benefit, not burden, current residents. (5) Keep density under control with Measure A. (6) Acknowledge transportation limitations imposed on Alameda by our limited access. Control traffic. (7) Don’t repeat the South Shore disaster on our developing north shore. These are just a few of reasons why I’m running for the City Council. Change is good. Lets manage it properly with open community input. Our elected officials should be in charge, not staff and not developers. I have lived in Alameda for 52 years and have been married for 38 years.

If anyone has more information about Pat Bail, please feel free to add it to the comments section.  BUT…if you do post something, please make sure to cite your reference and add a link so that others can reference it. 


  1. Pat Bail cracks me up! She is proposing that we get rid of the three different diesel trucks for green, recycling and regular waste — all in the name of encouraging waste management.

    Would a single truck make three different trips? So much for waste management, if this were the alternative.

    Or maybe a truck that can pick up all three materials at once (unless we have a gargantuan truck that is 3x the capacity of what we have now, I don’t see how this would help).

    Unfortunately, Pat Bail is silent on the specifics and does not propose a viable alternative.

    Comment by alameda — September 13, 2006 @ 10:18 am

  2. Lauren – you keep re-posting the lie about how Pat Bail outspent anyone in the last election. As I indicated to you previously, I have Johnson’s 496 and 460 forms that show she spent upwards of $125K of other people’s (including developers) money.

    I have these forms only in hard copy, but I’d be happy to pass them along to you.

    Comment by keepmeasurea — September 13, 2006 @ 10:54 am

  3. BTW – Tom Billings, who you also quote, expressly advocated high-rises (i.e. concrete canyons) in his recent letter to the editor.

    It was funny to see so many HOMES supporters in this forum scamper to distance themselves from Tom’s comments.

    Comment by keepmeasurea — September 13, 2006 @ 10:55 am

  4. Hey — alameda’s back! Great to see you posting again!

    keepmeasurea — near as I can read in THIS SPECIFIC ARTICLE — Lauren merely mentioned the amount she spent.

    After doing a quick re-read — the only person who mentions the term “outspent” is you.

    (There might be stronger implications in the other linked articles, though.)

    Based on the brief summary you posted earlier about Ms. Johnson’s spending — I actually agree with you — yes, I know — stop the presses — about political spending reporting — but rather than target any specific canidate — let’s do what we can to ask ALL canidates to attempt to be as transparent as possible with regards to spending.

    And yes, preferably more than a few days before the election.

    However, keepmeasurea, if I may ask for your opinion on another matter?

    I’m interested in hearing your take on the alleged prejudicial comments attributed to Ms. Bail in the Progressive Alamedan article Lauren linked to.

    Why defend her if this is true?

    (Here’s my logic — If it isn’t true, then a pox on Mister White for circulating it in other blogs. If it is true, then congratulations to him for letting it be known. It certainly could affect MY vote since I am also part of a multi-cultural family.)

    Is defending Measure A truly that important to you that you’re willing to overlook this and defend her?

    The enemy of my enemy is my friend argument, perhaps?

    Comment by Dave S. — September 13, 2006 @ 12:02 pm

  5. The unstated assumption behind keepmeasurea’s comment above is that agreement with a person is an all-or-nothing proposition. For example, might it be possible for someone to agree with Tom Billing’s analysis of Ms. Bail’s campaign, yet disagree with his views on the appropriateness of high-rise construction in Alameda? Do his views on the latter automatically invalidate his arguments on the former?

    I do not assume that those who are opposed to any changes to Measure A all hold exactly the same views on the subject, despite the fact that they agree on a unifying principle. For example, I’m sure there are widely differing views on the rationale behind Measure A and exactly what constitutes appropriate growth under it.

    On the other side of the coin, then, I hardly find it surprising or “funny” that those who favor some modification of Measure A have views as divergent as Mr. Billings’ and my own. If I recall correctly, Mr. Billings also advocated tearing down the historic Alameda Theater, another proposal I most definitely do not support. Just because we agree on the need to modify Measure A in some way does not mean we agree on everything else.

    As far as I know, Tom Billings is alone is his enthusiasm for high-rise development in Alameda. I would have thought keepmeasurea would be happy to see that so many of us do not share Mr. Billings’ vision.

    Comment by Michael Krueger — September 14, 2006 @ 11:51 am

  6. Dave S. – it’s funny that your ally Micheal K. should immediately follow up your question to me with a defense of “agreement with a person is not an all-or-nothing affair.”

    For the record, I too am part of a bi-racial family, with a mixed race son.

    Comment by keepmeasurea — September 15, 2006 @ 1:23 pm

  7. If anyone wants to argue with “keepmeasurea”, then I reccomend posting comments on their site, where if you do post, and it happens to be an opposing view, you will likely be branded a staunch “liberal”. Heaven forbid we change a damned thing here at all. Hey- I have an idea. How about we go to the rennaisance fair and learn to be more like people in the middle ages and apply it to Alameda’s politics?

    Comment by Willy — September 15, 2006 @ 4:37 pm

  8. My husband attended the “slate’s” kickoff event Sept. 16 and reports that the slate intends (promises? vows? not sure) to spend no more than $10,000 apiece in the council/mayoral campaigns.

    In the hallway during the ADC’s endorsement balloting, Doug deHaan repeated that the would spend no more than $30,000 “per capita.” I asked something like, “For a total of $90,000?” He said yes.

    I guess we’ll have to wait to find out for sure.

    Comment by Linda Hudson — September 18, 2006 @ 12:32 pm

  9. My husband and I (along with Lauren) went to the ADC meeting as well. I thought that Doug deHaan committed to a total of $30K for the entire slate, so I was surprised to hear to the contrary. I’m waiting to see too…

    Comment by Valerie — September 18, 2006 @ 1:37 pm

  10. I went to the HBI candidate forum and heard pat speak for the first time. She is an angry, angry woman. She wants to bring Alameda back to a time where everyone was white and middle class. She offends my sensibilities in every way. As a Chinese American man who is married with two children under the age of three, I feel that she does not speak for me or most other young families in Alameda. She and the Slate want to return Alameda to a time where there were few minorities and no development. Many of her views border on the racist.

    Comment by Simon — October 9, 2006 @ 9:06 pm

  11. Simon, you have tons of company! There are many others who feel similarly about Pat Bail. Unfortunately, her supporters are still trying to desperately support Pat’s racist comments!

    Comment by Chris — October 10, 2006 @ 6:39 am

  12. Chris, Simon has the right to his sentiment, but you cannot be trusted. Please quote the sentence where anyone “supports Pat’s racist comments.”

    Comment by NIMBY — October 10, 2006 @ 7:11 am

  13. As others have commented, Pat Bail did make the “black seat” remark and also the “eating live turtles” reference to Chinatown. What does a diehard supporter of Pat Bail like NIMBY do?

    One instance is being blown out of proportion, another is what someone thinks someone said.

    She just dismisses this as hearsay, despite the evidence being on tape. NIMBY is also willing to overlook Pat’s lack of any concrete list of accomplishments (other than appearing on the Don Roberts show every other week!).

    NIMBY also defends the use of tar baby (by another Slate member) as appropriate (never mind that it has since come to denote a racial slur).

    Details are in the link I posted above.

    Comment by Chris — October 10, 2006 @ 8:12 am

  14. The instance being blown out of proportion is the use of tar baby and it is unrelated to Pat Bail—see my complete reasoning at the link by Chris. I have yet to hear where the rest of the quotes come from.

    I do not support racist statements by anyone. However, seeing how what I say gets all distorted and misused (I never said tar baby was “appropriate”), I can only take hard evidence for what other people have said, and draw my own conclusions from there.

    Comment by NIMBY — October 10, 2006 @ 8:40 am

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