Mandelman First to Declare District 8 Candidacy

Written by Luke Thomas. Posted in News, Politics

Published on June 11, 2009 with 9 Comments

Rafael Mandelman is the first candidate to declare candidacy
in the 2010 race for District 8 Supervisor.
Photos by Luke Thomas

By Luke Thomas

June 11, 2009

Lawyer and Board of Appeals Commissioner Rafael Mandelman filed papers with the San Francisco Department of Elections Wednesday, formally declaring his candidacy to replace sitting Supervisor Bevan Dufty in the 2010 race for District 8 Supervisor.

Considered a Progressive, Mandelman is the only candidate so far to declare candidacy in what is expected to become a competitive race in a district regarded as socially progressive but economically moderate.

District 8 encompasses Noe Valley, The Castro, Glen Park, Diamond Heights, Duboce Triangle, Dolores Park & San Jose/Guerrero, and Buena Vista Heights neighborhoods.

“I think it’s a Progressive district,” Mandelman told Fog City Journal, “but it can vote conservative and it has sometimes voted for the more conservative candidate in previous races. But I do think the that the people who live there have Progressive values.”

And though it is considered early to declare candidacy for a race more than a year away, Mandelman said he filed now to legally begin his fundraising campaign against candidates he expects will court deep-pocketed downtown corporate interests, interests that are more concerned with development than social issues. Filing early also gives Mandelman a head start in securing important endorsements.

As in previous contests for district supervisor, candidates with the strongest ground campaigns who make the effort to canvass constituents across the district, have had the greatest electoral success. Winning labor support can also be a boon to a candidate’s door-to-door ground campaign.

“I have strong hopes I will win union support,” he said. “I would very much like to get the (San Francisco) Labor Council endorsement. I have good relationships with Local 2 and SEIU and other unions.”

On the question of whether constituent politics has changed as District 8 has become more affluent, Mandelman said: “It’s become a more affluent district, but gay people and straight people in the district have chosen to live there because of the culture they’ve found there, the history – people are aware of that and they’ve made a choice.”

Thrice-elected former Supervisor Harry Britt joined Mandelman during his filing with an enthusiastic endorsement.

“Rafael has been a friend and hero of mine for a long time and he’s really the Progressive candidate in this District race and someone who’s earned the support of the present members of the Board of Supervisors,” Britt said, “and he’ll be an extraordinary leader for San Francisco.”

Harry Britt has formally endorsed Mandelman.

Though not officially declared, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Assistant Manager Laura Spanjian, Deputy City Attorney Scott Wiener, and Assistant District Attorney Rebecca Prozan are expected to join Mandelman in the race.

“I like all of my opponents,” Mandelman said. “I think all of my opponents are talented, excellent candidates. We’re all good candidates.”

Asked what differentiates him from his expected opponents, Mandelman said: “I have a range of experience that actually is pretty good qualification for this office. I have been a lawyer for cities and affordable housing developers for the past nine years. I’m a commissioner on the Board of Appeals, which is sometimes said to be the most powerful commission in San Francisco. I’ve been President of the (Harvey Milk) Democratic Club and I am very active in Democratic Party politics.”

“So, at the level of credentials, I offer good credentials, but what I also offer is a lot of heart and passion for San Francisco and also the passion about the things that the City government does to make peoples’ lives better, taking care of the people that need to be taken care of, and to create opportunities for people who need to have opportunities created for them.”

More Info

Rafael Mandelman bio

Luke Thomas

Luke Thomas is a former software developer and computer consultant who proudly hails from London, England. In 2001, Thomas took a yearlong sabbatical to travel and develop a photographic portfolio. Upon his return to the US, Thomas studied photojournalism to pursue a career in journalism. In 2004, Thomas worked for several neighborhood newspapers in San Francisco before accepting a partnership agreement with the, a news website formerly covering local, state and national politics. In September 2006, Thomas launched The BBC, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox News, New York Times, Der Spiegel, San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Magazine, 7x7, San Francisco Examiner, San Francisco Bay Guardian and the San Francisco Weekly, among other publications and news outlets, have published his work. Thomas is a member of the Freelance Unit of the Pacific Media Workers Guild, TNG-CWA Local 39521 and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.

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Comments for Mandelman First to Declare District 8 Candidacy are now closed.

  1. I’m only sorry that, not living in District 8, I won’t be able to vote for Rafael – otherwise he would surely have my vote!

  2. Oooh SNAP, Luke! I love a good sock puppet show!

    Congratulations on the filing, Rafael.

    Rafael’s right: he, Scott, Rebecca, and Laura are all talented and excellent candidates. I hope this race turns out to be a clean and honest debate about the important issues facing my district and the City.

  3. Hmmm. Sock puppet for tenants, eh? Well, I’m down for a candidate who protects tenants from eviction, neighborhoods from over-development, and workers from workplace discrimination…
    Go Rafie!

  4. “However, he is prone to see city politics in terms of an ideological dichotomy between progressives and conservatives.”

    Good thing that Ruth R. Snave’s perception Rafael Mandelman is not like my perception of Arthur Evans, as Arthur excels in being able to see both the good and the bad in all political participants and not judge them based on his perceptions of their political motives.


  5. By the way, didn’t Mandelman (and you know you are a politician/budding politician when people you don’t know but know who you are start call you by your last name) refuse to cross the picket line at the DCCC fundraiser? I wonder what his explanation for that is. This isn’t necessarily a criticism as the event was pretty confusing and chaotic, but still …

  6. I recently had a dream about Scott Penis. He became quietly enraged at me because I kept calling him Scott Penis. And for some reason he could throw a football really far. I mean, he could launch that motherf*cker. Considering his skeletal frame, you wouldn’t think he was capable of it. Maybe it had something to do with his wingspan …

  7. Speaking of sock puppets, York, you’ve been posting comments on FCJ using six pseudonyms.

    These are as follows: Francis Moranz, James Hagerty, Gerard Fairmont, Tehama Amahet, York Lau and Brian Wallace – all using the same email address and two IP addresses.

    This is a classic case of the pot calling the kettle black.

    Have a nice day!

  8. Rafael Mandelman is an intelligent, honest, highly motivated person.

    However, he is prone to see city politics in terms of an ideological dichotomy between progressives and conservatives.

    Such a dichotomy is illustrated by this statement he made to Fog City Journal:

    “I think it’s a Progressive district but it can vote conservative and it has sometimes voted for the more conservative candidate in previous races. But I do think the that the people who live there have Progressive values.”

    Many voters are tired of ideological litmus tests from politicians. Instead, they want practical solutions to down-to-earth problems that are arrived at through good-faith dialog with all stakeholders.

    Will Rafael Mandelman be a practical problem-solver or an ideologue?

    Hopefully, he will let us know in the course of the campaign.

  9. Scott Wiener for District 8 Supervisor. Please. Thank you.

    Rafael Mandelman says, “I have been a lawyer for cities and affordable housing developers for the past nine years.”

    What about allowing more people to convert the apartment they are currently living to condos? If you’re living in a TIC arrangement and nobody gets evicted, you should be able to convert your building to condos … tomorrow.

    Rafael Mandelman is just another sock puppet for Ted Gulliksen!