Blogging Bayport Alameda

June 8, 2021


Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

So I was honestly struggling about this vote. It wasn’t until my father asked me who I should vote for that I realized who I should also vote for because in my head, while it was all theoretical and I could debate it alone I had all sorts of lists of pros and cons and blah blah blah.

But when someone asks you for an opinion and you don’t want them to throw away their vote, that’s when it becomes real.

Reader, I told my father to vote for Malia Vella.

First, having someone from Alameda is a big deal and someone who has demonstrated time and time again that she stands for all the right issues that are meaningful to me is also a big deal.

Also we must send the cuteness that is Malia Vella’s children to Sacramento.

In all seriousness, in a field full of interesting and diverse candidates — some more ready for prime time than others — at least the Alameda contenders made it difficult to come to a final choice.

In other news, Janani Ramachandran who — puzzlingly — was the pick of the EB Times has been advertising an endorsement from Trish Spencer on her website:

It doesn’t appear that Janani Ramachandran holds any positions that Trish Spencer does which should have been a warning sign for the candidate. The fact that no one flagged this endorsement for Janani Ramchandran also means that she has very little connections to Alameda itself and therefore Alameda will not be a priority for her if she’s elected.

So if you want Alameda to continue to have a solid voice in Sacramento, vote for one of the two Alameda candidates: Malia Vella or Mia Bonta.

But if you want someone who has shown herself to be a courageous voice in the face of some real ugliness in our community toward her: vote Malia Vella.


  1. And when it was explained to her just how toxic of an endorsement it was, she really lamely doubled down.

    Comment by Rod — June 8, 2021 @ 7:34 am

  2. Who cares? Bonta and Vella are the same person…and likely to split the Alameda Dem vote. What do they have to say about more Black on Asian crime in the daytime armed robbery at the Alameda post office a few days ago? Speaking of Bonta, last week AG Bonta found out being AG is hard, as he lost a huge case in federal court which overturned California’s 30 year assault weapons ban. Nice job rookie.

    Comment by Really — June 8, 2021 @ 7:39 am

    • While I’m the last person to ever toot Bonta’s horn (he defines the term “empty suit”), you can’t pin that case on him. When a judge compares a military grade semiautomatic rifle to a pocket knife with a straight face, not even Clarence Darrow could win in that courtroom.

      Comment by JM — June 8, 2021 @ 7:53 am

  3. I really dislike the “Alameda First” attitude that is so common here. I encountered so much vitriol when I supported a candidate not from Alameda to represent us in the CA state senate a few years ago, and it seems it’s happening again. Please realize that Alameda is only a small part of the 18th AD so this representative needs to represent Alameda, San Leandro, and a large part of the much larger Oakland. I prefer to look at the big picture when looking at a candidate, and there’s only one candidate who’s pushing for the Green New Deal, $22 minimum wage, and so forth. It’s a shame that some people are letting a troll endorsement — you know that Trish is only doing this to split the vote away from M & M — shape their perception of the candidate. It reminds me of those people who went absolutely nuts when Joe Rogan and Cardi B endorsed Bernie Sanders in 2020…

    Comment by therealdanwood — June 8, 2021 @ 8:39 am

    • “Alameda is only a small part of the 18th AD”…….

      All the more reason we need someone from Alameda representing us. I’m voting for Malia Vella. I think she’ll do a great job.

      Comment by Karen Bey — June 8, 2021 @ 8:55 am

    • And yet, Janani R is the only candidate who literally hugged close to her an endorsement from an elected official who used the term “Alamedans First” as her campaign slogan. If folks close to Janani R. suspected the endorsement was a trolling one (it’s not because I’m betting Trish Spencer honestly believes that Janani R. is the only person who hews closely to her “grind government to a halt” philosophy) then perhaps they should have advised her to keep it off her website and maybe not try to justify Trish Spencer’s endorsement as proof that she has the ability to build common ground.

      Comment by Lauren Do — June 8, 2021 @ 10:12 am

  4. This post lacks credibility. You have been angling against Janani for several weeks, so pretending to have made a fraught decision is… Inconsistent. Unless you were deciding between Bonta and Vella, the two candidates with histories of ethical lapses and lots of big donors. Janani is the only candidate denying all corporate donations. The only candidate talking about a 22 dollar minimum wage. She’s smart and squeaky clean enough to appeal to Old Alameda, yes, but that doesn’t make her a bad candidate.

    Comment by Erin Fraser — June 8, 2021 @ 9:21 am

    • Also, I just checked Janani’s website and she’s taken down the Trish endorsement. Congrats?

      Comment by Erin Fraser — June 8, 2021 @ 9:53 am

      • That is worthy of congratulations. Old Alameda tends (and only tends) towards the reactionary and NIMBY, and Spencer is their useful tool. Who knows what she actually believes? Lists of endorsements matter. I won’t vote for something or someone endorsed by Howard Jarvis Taxpayers and nor will I vote for something or someone endorsed by Spencer. I like a lot of Janani’s platform and am probably part of her target audience. But I was, frankly, shocked to see Spencer’s name on her site. I already returned my ballot, so too late now.

        Comment by BC — June 8, 2021 @ 10:53 am

      • We did it!

        Comment by Rod — June 8, 2021 @ 11:56 am

      • Not so fast on that. The Trish endorsement is back up on her website: Nothing says leadership like admitting you were wrong in accepting an endorsement (and lamely claiming common ground with Trish), removing the endorsement, and then 8 hours later putting it back up.

        I feel like Cassandra, warning folks about what a Trish endorsement presages, and then watching it all happen.

        Comment by Ezra Denney — June 8, 2021 @ 5:47 pm

    • It’s easy to be squeaky clean when you have not served in elected office and have no existing record to stand on. The fact that Trish Spencer’s history of literally being on the wrong side (not just the wrong side but actively using her position of power to make policy) of nearly everything that Janani R. has stated she stands for and that didn’t cause pause on Janani R.’s part is a huge red flag about either the people she has around her advising her or about how much she is willing to compromise her principles in order to win.

      Comment by Lauren Do — June 8, 2021 @ 10:06 am

    • Follow the money. Mia is spending a lot. T.V. ads on cable channels are not cheap. And Bonta is calling in chits from all over. The endorsement by Barbara Lee story was almost a half page in the Chron. Big story about humble beginnings and stressing Mia’s Black and Latina roots in the Sunday Chron was a well placed boost as well. It is a smart campaign, but it is costing a fortune. Be sure to always check on the source of campaign funds for all candidates.

      Comment by Kate Quick — June 14, 2021 @ 1:40 pm

  5. As someone who participated in over 10+ elections as a candidate (loosely defined since I really did not run traditional campaigns), the gathering of endorsement from people is interesting. Soliciting endorsements from the general public is pretty straight forward and typically use sign up process via a campaign website. To get an endorsement from an elected official usually requires either an introduction for someone associated with the elected official or direct contact appeal to the elected official. It appears this candidate was very anxious to secure elected officials endorsements without doing any vetting. Hopefully this candidate has a good treasurer to ensure the campaign donations received that do not meet her campaign promises.

    Comment by Mike McMahon — June 8, 2021 @ 10:26 am

  6. Speaking of AD18 candidates, has anyone else received this email? Not sure how I got on the list, and it was in my junk folder so didn’t see it right away…from Steve Slauson/campaign ( dated June 4th:

    Hello Neighbor:

    Its time to stand up and fight for our African American brothers. These people are your friends, your neighbors, your doctors, your dentists, your restaurant owners, your health workers, your teachers, your political representatives and have been intregal part on our community since the gold rush.

    The recent large number of attacks on African American businesses must be stoped and the guilty brought to justice. We can not continue to let a few warped individuals prey on our African American brothers. If these individuals need help, all they have to do is ask for help from the religious community and help will be provided. Our religious community has been helping others since the gold rush. There is no reason for anyone to steal or harm anyone or business in our community. Remember churches are not museums for saints they are hospitals for sinners.

    Do your part and support African Amerian business. Your support will help to stop these attacks on African American businesses.
    Your friends at

    Steve Slauson

    This information is intended to be for the use of the individual or entity named above. If you are not the intendent recipient, be advised that any disclosures, copying or distribution or use of the contents of this information is prohibited. If you have received this electronic traqnsmittal in error, please reply to this emai and type UNSUBSCRIBE in the To: Field.

    If you don’t want to receive any more of these emails, reply to this email and type UNSUBSCRIBE in the To: Field.

    Comment by Apparently I'm a Spam Magnet — June 8, 2021 @ 12:01 pm

    • Oh dear me! Just checked Junk folder further back and there’s the exact same message from ‘goodgov8’ but switch out ‘African American’ for ‘Asian American’ throughout the msg….sent May 17th.

      Comment by Rinse & Repeat — June 8, 2021 @ 12:11 pm

    • And the mystery continues….just discovered a previous message from ‘goodgov8’ in Junk folder (exact same wording, except switch out African American for Asian American in the verbiage) from May 17th.

      Comment by SpamMagnet#2 — June 8, 2021 @ 12:21 pm

  7. If Janani is so clueless about the most egregious of our local politicians, it does not bode well for how well she’d represent us in Sacramento. Malia Vella has my vote. That said, this might be a calculated strategy so that Janani can get the Alameda votes that Malia won’t. However, this will backfire. Folks that might have supported Janani will now be frighted away b/c of Trish Spencer.

    Comment by Angela — June 9, 2021 @ 9:41 am

    • It will definitely backfire, alright. Imagine a year later, Janani is in assembly and supporting things like more density zoning, higher minimum wages, more services for homeless – and the same NIMBY crowd (Trish, Carmen, Colleen, etc) lose their collective minds for having endorsed someone so anathema to their beliefs. And we still have Malia Vella, who’s gearing up to become Mayor of Alameda. I’m fucking here for it. There’s really no winning outcome for these clowns, but they just wanted to insert themselves somehow with their myopic political machination.

      Comment by Reality — June 9, 2021 @ 11:47 am

      • Vella off council is very much a winning outcome.

        Comment by Go Malia! — June 9, 2021 @ 2:57 pm

  8. I am voting for Mia Bonta. While other candidates talk of “working with tenants being evicted, displaced, and communities being gentrified” Mia lived this experience as a child she and her single mother moved 13 times in 16 years. Mia’s lived experience has influence her life’s work defined by three pilars—equity, inclusion and diversity—to build a beloved community. Mia has Sacramento experience—she drafted legislation; worked with the offices of legislators; and whipped votes for bills that since have been signed into law. Mia is a fierce leader and is grounded on her progressive values and lived experience as a daughter of activists, Afro-Latina and someone who had to make the long commute, as a child, to attend a school who saw and believed on her god-given potential. Mia continues to use the pulpit of the school board, to highlight the connection between discriminatory housing policies in Alameda and the impact on neighborhood schools. Mari Pérez-Ruiz, former President of Alameda Renters Coalition

    Comment by Mari Pérez-Ruiz — June 10, 2021 @ 7:45 am

    • That’s all well and great, but there’s no way Mia deserves AD18 more than Malia Vella. You and I both know that Malia Vella has done far more for tenants’ rights than Mia. Mia was MIA during the rent control battles – Malia was right there on the frontline for M1/L1 and K. You, of all people, know this.

      Comment by 100% Malia Vella — June 11, 2021 @ 9:14 pm

      • Rent Control in Alameda was impossible before Malia Vella came onto council. I was forced to participate in strengthening the RRAC because I didn’t have enough votes on council to move forward on true tenant protections until Malia Vella was elected. I’m voting for Malia because she was able to turn the tide on tenants rights. She’s been one of the strongest leaders on housing opportunity in the East Bay, long before Berkeley ever even thought to start reversing their redlining policies. She is the leader AD18 needs.

        Angela Hockabout – Founder of the Alameda Renters Coalition.

        Comment by Angela Hockabout — June 15, 2021 @ 10:30 pm

  9. Here’s my question — if you were voting in the AD18 special election, who would you write in and why? I can’t stand any of the named candidates.

    Comment by Oh the Irony! — June 24, 2021 @ 1:38 pm

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