Yes, the 2020 mayoral derby has begun

Posted: August 31st, 2018 | Conversations with Nicole, Featured | No Comments

By Nicole Murray Ramirez | Conversations with Nicole

A few weeks ago in the Union-Tribune, popular columnist Michael Smolens wrote a lengthy column entitled “San Diego mayoral derby for 2020 has already started.” Well actually this political derby began the day after our last mayoral election, which Kevin Faulconer won easily and who is now termed out.

The No. 1 name on everyone’s list is Todd Gloria, who served as the elected-interim mayor after Bob Filner resigned. Gloria has also served as City Council president and is currently the majority whip of the California state Assembly. He is absolutely the most qualified and experienced when it comes to all aspects of City Hall. As I’ve said many times, “The Golden State is turning brown” and so is the population of San Diego. Gloria would make history as our city’s first mayor of color, and yes, the first gay one. Gloria has never lost an election and is a son of a maid and gardener. He rents and has known the struggle of the average fellow San Diegan. Gloria is an example and role model of the American dream.

(L to r) Assemblymember Todd Gloria and Sen. Kamala D. Harris (Courtesy of Nicole Murray Ramirez)

Barbara Bry is serving her first term as a council member and is already talking to people about a run for mayor. Bry has lots of money, which could help finance her campaign. I recently had a conversation with a political mover and shaker and she told me that Bry kept saying that it was time for another female mayor and that its been the “Year of the Woman.” In her short years as a council member, Bry has not authored any major legislation and is probably the least known of them all but she is right. Possibly being the only woman candidate could help her make it out of the primary.

Millionaire, and current Congressman Scott Peters has let it be known that he is taking a serious look at the mayoral race. The last time Peters ran for a citywide office, he came in third to eventual winner, former City Attorney Mike Aguirre. Many Democratic leaders want Peters to stay in Congress especially if it flips over. Many political leaders tell me that many will not forget that Peters was on the City Council and his votes concerning the pension mess.

Many believe that Kevin Faulconer will be the last Republican mayor of San Diego as Republican registration is shrinking all over California.

As many of you know, I have served and advised the last mayors of San Diego … five Republicans and two Democrats. Three are what I consider good qualified Republicans being mentioned: Former Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman, Councilmembers Chris Cate and Mark Kersey and state Assembly member and former Councilmember Brian Maienschein … all of them good, qualified public servants.

Expect two of the possible candidates who are Democrats to officially announce by February of next year.

Bonnie Dumanis is not corrupt

Recently, the Democratic Party put out an ad with pictures of Donald Trump, Duncan Hunter, and Bonnie Dumanis. Under the three pictures was the bold, ugly statement: “Vote Against Corrupt Republicans.” This attempt to make Dumanis like Trump and Hunter is a bold-faced lie and a smear campaign that is unworthy of the Democratic Party and should be stopped. Dumanis made history when she was elected as the first woman, Jewish and lesbian district attorney in San Diego — and the United States. She tirelessly worked her way up from a clerk to be elected a judge. While a Superior Court judge, Dumanis established “drug courts” that saved and changed countless lives. She is pro-choice, pro-LGBT equality, and happily married to her wife. Dumanis has never, ever endorsed or supported Trump.

Yes, I am supporting and have endorsed Nathan Fletcher for County Supervisor and will be voting for him on Nov. 6 and, no, I didn’t like one bit the ugly smear campaign and lies he was subjected to. But as a registered Democrat, I expect better of the Democratic Party.

— Nicole Murray Ramirez has been writing a column since 1973. He has been a Latino/gay activist for almost half a century and has advised and served the last seven mayors of San Diego. Named the “Honorary Mayor of Hillcrest” by a city proclamation, he has received many media awards including from the prestigious San Diego Press Club. Reach Nicole at

Editor’s Note: The opinions written in this column are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the staff and/or publisher of Gay San Diego and/or its parent company, San Diego Community News Network (SDCNN). The newspaper and its staff should be held harmless of liability or damages.

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