Fairfield City Councilwoman Pam Bertani is making hay in her campaign to unseat Supervisor Jim Spering with the issue of recent deadly violence in Fairfield and Suisun City.
Crime is the right issue, but it’s the wrong campaign for Bertani.
There are areas where incumbent Supervisor Jim Spering is vulnerable politically. He’s a longtime politician, with two decades leading the Suisun City Council before making the move in 2006 to represent the 3rd District on the Board of Supervisors. Challenge him there. He’s active in regional boards and commissions, some could argue at the expense of local representation. Challenge him there.
Crime in Fairfield and Suisun City is not high on the list of areas where Spering is vulnerable.
Bertani, as a member of the Fairfield City Council, is perfectly positioned to do something in response to the spate of recent deadly violence in the city.
Her fellow council members understand this. Councilwoman Catherine Moy and Councilman John Mraz are working to be out in front of the crime issue in Fairfield. They got ahead of themselves in trying to take the lead on a city crime forum that’s scheduled Tuesday. They are also up for re-election this fall, so for them, it’s important to be seen as leaders in the effort to combat crime in Fairfield.
Bertani, for reasons we can’t fathom, seems to think challenging a sitting county supervisor on the issue of crime in Fairfield and, to a lesser extent, in Suisun City, is a prudent campaign strategy. The fact of the matter is that the recent crime in Fairfield is happening on her watch as a sitting council member.
Yet, instead of taking the lead to push her fellow council members to add more officers to the streets, to push staff in a very public way to go after additional grants to support specific anti-crime programs; instead of calling for a summit of local elected officials to devise a unified strategy to tackle gun violence in our communities – instead of anything else you may think will work to lessen crime in Fairfield – she makes crime in the city a key campaign issue in her run for county supervisor.
Worse still, Bertani is inflaming fear, relying on rhetoric and questionable campaign tactics to further her goal of leaving the council before the end of her first term in office.
This is disappointing behavior, and it’s disingenuous. We expect better from our City Council members in Fairfield, and we should demand better of those who seek to represent us on the Board of Supervisors.