Wednesday, September 17, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Kashkari nomination brings GOP back from brink

elias column sig

By
From page A13 | June 11, 2014 |

No candidate campaigned harder this spring that Neel Kashkari, the former federal Treasury Department official and ex-Goldman Sachs executive who just become the first Asian-American ever nominated for governor of California.

He was someplace every day. His campaign issued a seemingly nonstop barrage of press releases. He willingly met with political reporters, who took him seriously even when he was at 2 percent in the polls.

Kashkari also won the endorsements of every prominent Republican who took sides in this month’s primary election. These included ex-Gov. Pete Wilson, former presidential nominee Mitt Romney (now a La Jolla resident), possible GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush and Rep. Darrell Issa of northern San Diego County, chairman of the House Governmental Oversight Committee. Ex-President George W. Bush made fundraising calls for him. There are no bigger GOP guns.

But Kashkari’s campaign was so cash-starved that during the month before the vote, the candidate who once said he couldn’t fund his own campaign because his net worth was “only” about $5 million felt he had to put up $2 million of his own cash (by his reckoning, about 40 percent of all his resources).

This was still barely enough to put Kashkari into the November runoff election, beating out primary opponent Tim Donnelly, an assemblyman from the High Desert town of Twin Peaks best known for attempting to carry a handgun onto a Southwest Airlines flight at Ontario International Airport two years ago. Before that, the tea party favorite’s main claim to fame was being a co-founder of the Minutemen group battling illegal immigration. Imagine what that might have done to the Latino vote.

Donnelly’s campaign manager, Jennifer Kerns, quit in mid-March, amid reports the candidate consistently refused to take her advice. He compared President Obama to Adolf Hitler and groundlessly accused Kashkari of promoting Islamic Sharia law. Yet, somehow, Donnelly almost managed to make the runoff, primarily because much of the Republican Party’s California base believed he was the only purely anti-government candidate available.

Kashkari’s win meant that the Republican establishment beat back the grass-roots GOP right this spring. In a contest that drew very few Democratic voters, Kashkari’s last-minute spending inspired just enough moderate Republican voters to back him. Many apparently feared having Donnelly top their ticket would drag down dozens of other Republicans in swing districts, while Kashkari might be a neutral factor.

As of early May, just more than two weeks before the first absentee ballots went to voters, Kashkari had barely run any commercials. So he was undefined to most voters before his last-week ad campaign, even as Donnelly tried to tag him a purely establishment hack.

But at least Kashkari is a real candidate. While Donnelly railed vaguely against big government, Kashkari issued detailed position papers on job creation and education.

Kashkari’s primary win over Donnelly at least indicates the GOP does not have a total death wish, as it avoided nominating a candidate who could alienate even more voters than the California GOP already has. But in a very lightly voted election, with Democrats having little at stake in most places, Brown still managed to win a large majority over both Republicans combined.

It’s possible Kashkari will make inroads into that cushion by the fall, for he’s promised that if elected, he will frequently compromise with Democrats who dominate the Legislature.

The vote also might indicate GOP feelings against illegal immigration have eased a bit, as the party nominated the son of immigrants while rejecting a leader of the vigilante-like Minutemen.

The bottom line is that after flirting with a potentially deep electoral disaster, just enough GOP voters realized that their party would be a dead duck on many levels if it sent Donnelly against Brown, whose job approval ratings in polls this spring were well over 50 percent.

All of which probably means Brown, sitting on a campaign war chest of more than $21 million, will still have a clear path this fall, but the GOP likely will at least avoid a Democratic clean sweep of every competitive race in the state, which Donnelly could have made a distinct possibility.

Thomas Elias is a California author. Reach him at tdelias@aol.com.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 6 comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • rlw895June 11, 2014 - 6:28 pm

    Yes, California is more sane than other states.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • NotJohnJune 11, 2014 - 7:14 pm

    Yep, right, you silly bugger. California is so sane that businesses and people with wealth are leaving en masse. California is so sane that it is building a high speed rail system which will not be able to move at high speed and which will stretch from about Bakersfield to about Modesto and which no one wants nor will ride. California is so sane that it is going to build tunnels for water in earthquake country to take water from the flourishing agricultural industry to give to the swimming pools in LA. Yep, sane ain't the word for it.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rlw895June 11, 2014 - 10:20 pm

    All I'm saying is we're sane enough to nominate a Kashkari over a Donnelly. What are you saying?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • NotJohnJune 12, 2014 - 6:39 am

    What I am saying, rlw895, is that you are full of beans and don't know what you are talking about. First, you aren't the "we" you talk about, you are not a Republican. Second, "we" didn't get Kashkari nominated, a few rich elitists found this clown and forced him upon the people of this state and several million dollars later, he won enough votes to defeat the people's choice. Don't bother to answer; I already know what you will say.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rlw895June 12, 2014 - 6:47 am

    NJ: Do you now? Doesn't matter. This is an open forum, so my reply is not just for or to you, so you get it anyway.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rlw895June 12, 2014 - 6:54 am

    NJ: It's you who doesn't know what he's talking about. I'm a Californian, so "we" is accurate. I'm not talking about Republicans. Ever hear of the "top two" primary? Californians nominated Brown and Kashkari and rejected Donnelly. Elias is right; we saved the Republicans from themselves. You're welcome.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

David Grant doctor’s mission continues

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A1, 3 Comments | Gallery

 
 
Chamber PAC draws candidates to Jelly Belly

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A2, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Damaged dog gets going-away party after getting healthy

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Suisun City slaying suspect case moves forward

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

Touro University to host Zombie Run/Walk

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Land trust organizes Rockville Trails Preserve hike

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A4

 
Police enlist help to find armed bandit

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A4, 12 Comments | Gallery

 
Chamber to host Suisun City candidates night

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A5

 
 
 
Coastal Cleanup Day targets local waterways

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Judge questions juror in Calkins case

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A6

Drama reigns supreme with week’s film debuts

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A7

 
Anti-drug programs face funding shortfall

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

 
Fairfield police log: Sept. 15, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12, 1 Comment

Suisun City police log: Sept. 15, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12, 1 Comment

 
Suisun City police log: Sept. 14, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Suisun City police log: Sept. 13, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Fairfield police log: Sept. 13, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Fairfield police log: Sept. 14, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Weather for Sept. 17, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B14

.

US / World

Woman in wildfire’s path lost almost everything

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Lumber town takes stock after wind-driven wildfire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1 | Gallery

PG&E officials leave posts over improper emails

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8 | Gallery

 
Things to know about California groundwater law

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

California drivers must give bikes 3-foot buffer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9, 20 Comments | Gallery

 
San Francisco trying shaming for quake safety

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Governor signs first California groundwater rules

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Robbery suspects tried to make off with $15,600

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Top general: US ground troops possible in Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
Obama: Ebola outbreak a threat to global security

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

UN: Nearly $1 billion needed now to stop Ebola

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
CDC study: Americans’ bellies are expanding fast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 3 Comments | Gallery

Blacks, Hispanics have doubts about media accuracy

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 2 Comments

 
School bus driver killed during safety drill

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Hunt on for survivalist charged in trooper killing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

 
Afghan suicide bomber kills 3 foreign troops

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

Mexico airlifts tourists after Hurricane Odile

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

 
Ukraine lawmakers ratify landmark deal with Europe

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13, 1 Comment | Gallery

Iraq parliament rejects interior, defense nominees

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13, 1 Comment

 
.

Opinion

 
Time for utility execs to start worrying

By Thomas Elias | From Page: A11

Editorial cartoons for Sept. 17, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

 
 
Column focus on campaign signs misplaced

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 13 Comments

.

Living

Today in History: Sept. 17, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Sept. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

My selfish husband neglects and cheats on me. What’s next?

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B5

 
Horoscopes: Sept. 17, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B5

All the flavors of fall in one twice-baked package

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Leave them feeling full with nutritious chia seeds

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6, 1 Comment

A late summer Southern classic – tomato pie

By Elizabeth Karmel | From Page: B6

 
.

Entertainment

CBS: Rihanna out of NFL telecast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Leonardo DiCaprio named UN Messenger of Peace

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

.

Sports

Prep volleyball preview: Big goals for city teams

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Raiders games are like live reruns

By Tony Wade | From Page: B1, 2 Comments

Kazmir, sloppy Athletics lose 6-3 to Rangers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Armijo volleyball team falls to Vintage

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

Peavy, Posey help Giants gain ground in NL West

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Criticism mounting for Vikings, Adrian Peterson

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

McIlroy wins PGA player of the year award

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Grand jury to weigh case of NASCAR’s Tony Stewart

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Sacramento Kings to retire Stojakovic’s jersey

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Broncos, Seahawks top AP Pro32 before rematch

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Union appeals Ray Rice’s indefinite suspension by NFL

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Jaguars sign Rodriguez grad Jensen off practice squad

By Staff and wire reports | From Page: B2

Short stay at NASCAR’s party for AJ and Almirola

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Hindsight: a Ryder Cup tradition, like no other

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Senator ties NFL tax status to Redskins name

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
DA: Josh Gordon gets probation in DWI case in NC

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Anheuser-Busch, McDonald’s voice NFL disapproval

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
49ers defense looks to bounce back from tough day

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9 | Gallery

.

Business

NASA picks Boeing and SpaceX to ferry astronauts

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Web filter lifts block on gay sites

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Alibaba risk: China’s rise leaves out investors

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Corinthian Colleges sued for predatory lending

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

UPS expects to hire up to 95,000 seasonal workers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
US CEOs less optimistic about hiring, spending

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

.

Obituaries

Minnie Watkins Dixon

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Margaret King

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5