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San Diego
Saturday, May 18, 2024

S.D. Mayoral Candidates Looking to Fund Run

San Diego mayoral candidate Jerry Sanders figures he’ll be spending from $350,000 to $400,000 on his campaign, while San Diego City Councilwoman Donna Frye gave a ballpark figure of $150,000 , about $50,000 more than she spent on her ill-fated write-in campaign last year.

As the mayoral campaign to replace Mayor Dick Murphy kicked off last week, so did the fund-raising trail for the two officially declared candidates as of May 12. Mayoral candidates have until May 27 to file official papers with the city clerk’s office.

“We have 100 volunteers so far, and they’re e-mailing and calling, talking to folks in the community , grass roots and the business community,” said Sanders. “I’m just out talking to everyone I can talk to, letting them know that I’m a real candidate and very serious about this, and that I have the leadership qualities to solve the problems. I think that it’s resonating.”

Sanders, a former San Diego police chief, chairman of the American Red Cross San Diego and Imperial County chapters, and a consultant to high-tech companies, said that he couldn’t finance the campaign on his own.

“I don’t have the money to do that,” he said.

When told that Steven Francis, the executive chairman of San Diego-based AMN Healthcare who was strongly considering a run for mayor late last week, could be spending up to seven figures on his run to the July 26 special election, Sanders said: “That is discouraging for a democratic process. I don’t think money is the issue. If the issues resonate with people, the money will come. I’d rather have a broad base of supporters than doing it all myself.”

Meanwhile, Frye was being interviewed by the

San Diego Business Journal

on May 12 when it was announced that Santa Monica attorney Fred Woocher, representing three Frye supporters, had withdrawn their appeal of a Superior Court ruling disqualifying 5,551 of her write-in votes where the accompanying bubble had not been properly filled in.

“Recent events have essentially provided us with the relief we were seeking in this lawsuit,” said Woocher of Strumwasser & Woocher. “From the beginning, our objective was to make sure that the voters’ will is being implemented and that the person who will be sitting in the mayor’s seat for the next four years is the person who truly has the support of San Diego’s voters.”

Frye, when informed of the news, said: “I agree with that. There is an election scheduled and, quite frankly, there would be a problem at this point to say, ‘Now you are mayor,’ while there is an election being scheduled. I want to go through the election process.

“Some people were uncomfortable with having a mayor with only 35 percent of support. I don’t agree that write-ins should be banned, but I understand the concerns and I heard them. I hope this will put people’s complaints to rest. Try it again, and see if the second time is the charm. I’m looking forward to this.”

Like Sanders, Frye said she’s also out making the rounds, most recently at a Lions Club, where she said her anti-business stereotype was turned around.

“I’m a successful business owner, not a chick, not a barnyard animal, an intelligent woman who has a business degree, started a business in 1988 that is quite successful (a surf shop with husband Skip, a well-known surfboard builder), and there is a tendency to want to demean people not a part of the good old boys’ network,” Frye said.


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