‘Lisa Feldstein’

by on June 21, 2004

To the Editor:

District 5 candidate Lisa Feldstein has impressive credentials and good political values, but a few gaps in her campaign platform were distinctly missing from your article.

First, where does she stand on the Anti-Demolition Ordinance, which would protect rent controlled housing from the vicious forces of real estate speculators?? This measure twice passed the Board of Supervisors, before failing to override the Mayor’s veto. Currently, volunteers at the San Francisco Tenants Union have been working around the clock to gather signatures to place it on the ballot, and Supervisor Chris Daly has made its passage his #1 priority this November. I don’t even have to ask whether Bill Barnes or Robert Haaland support it, but Lisa Feldstein has so far been vague and ambiguous about where she stands.

Second, while having “cordial” relations with Mayor Newsom sounds sensible, such rhetoric is precisely the type of trap that progressives always get caught in whenever they try to appear diplomatic. Take, for example, the token progressives who were invited to serve on the Mayor’s workgroup to draft a housing bond — all in the name of building a consensus. By “making nice” with Newsom, they got caught doing the mayor’s bidding for subsidizing homeownership for rich people who can already afford to buy. If it weren’t for affordable housing activists who weren’t invited, Supervisor Daly and Supervisor Gonzalez directly challenging the Mayor, wiling to look like “obstructionists,” and refusing to “go along to get along,” the entire progressive community would have just sold affordable housing down the river.

I hope that Lisa Feldstein can answer these questions. She has potential to be a great Supervisor, if she’s willing to be the outspoken progressive that District 5 deserves.

— Paul Hogarth

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