Thursday, December 08, 2016

Republican Kathryn Barger, Predictably, Pisses on Democratic Endorsers


The gang's all here: Hilda Solis, Janice Hahn, their GOP Latino-hating pal Kathryn Barger and Sheila Kuehl 

-by Dorothy Reik
President, Progressive Democrats of the Santa Monica Mountains

Once Republican Kathryn Barger was elected to the L.A. County Board of Supervisors, defeating Democrat Darren Park, she wasted no time in showing her true colors-- not brown or black or even purple-- her color is TRUMP RED.

It was a busy first day in the Chamber with Barger going along with the rest of the Supervisors on many good motions but then the rubber met the road. On protection for immigrants who fear for their safety and whose families are under threat of being torn apart, Barger abstained. If Hilda Solis held her motion so her endorsed candidate Barger would make the vote unanimous she was sadly mistaken:
Solis recommended protections for immigrants, a motion she previewed two weeks ago but chose to hold for a vote until after Hahn and Barger were sworn in. After more than 100 speakers expressed their support and dozens more chose to waive their time to speak at the end of a long day that motion was approved on a 4-0 vote, with Barger abstaining.
Another Barger endorser who might be scratching her head is Maria Elena Durazo, Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee no less! How can she endorse a Republican? She can because the Democratic Party is undisciplined giving its members license to be unprincipled.

Of course Maria and Hilda were not the only Democrats who fell for Barger’s promises in spite of warnings that she had supported the sheriff’s abuse of minority tenants in her district as the chief deputy of right wing Republican disaster Michael Antonovich. The fact that he annointed her as his preferred successor, undoing the term limits put in place to get rid of him, should have been enough to send them running. "Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich has tapped his chief of staff, Kathryn Barger-Leibrich, as his preferred successor." This rotten apple did not fall far from her tree.

Way before Trump’s name became a household word outside of New York, minorities in Barger’s district, especially in the Antelope Valley and Palmdale, faced abusive, racist policing. The district had to settle a federal lawsuit for millions of dollars. "Federal officials said some (italics are mine) sheriff's personnel in the Antelope Valley had engaged in a 'pattern or practice of unconstitutional and unlawful policing regarding stops, searches and seizures, excessive force, and discriminatory targeting of voucher holders in their homes.'"

Barger supported the sheriffs and they returned the favor: "Campaign finance statements posted Monday show that the Assn. for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs and Los Angeles County Firefighter Local 1014 have each contributed $400,000 to the outside committee set up to support Barger." Barger also supports the environmentally disastrous Newhall Ranch development and the Chiquita Canyon landfill expansion, both abhorred by environmentalists.

In addition to Durazo and Solis, the following leading Democrats endorsed Barger: Sheila Kuehl, Gloria Molina, Zev Yaroslavsky, Eric Garcetti and Jeffrey Prang. Depressing-- but something to remember as time goes on.

They could have supported the Democrat, Darrell Park, who was endorsed by the Los Angeles County Democratic Party and all the Democratic Clubs, but they didn’t. Why? Would Barger have won anyway? We will never know. The residents of District 5 are the losers here-- even more than Darrell Park. They are the ones who will continue to live with abusive sheriffs and who will have to continue their fight against the Chiquita garbage dump (let’s call it what it is!) and the disastrous Newhall Ranch development and their own elected supervisor will be leading the charge against their efforts.

But how were they to know? The leading Democrats endorsed her. They trusted the Democratic leadership. We know how that turned out in the presidential election. It worked out the same way in District 5. That’s where Our Revolution needs to start.



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