Peskin Discusses his Support
for Nancy Pelosi’s Reelection Bid

Written by Luke Thomas. Posted in News, Politics

Tagged: ,

Published on October 08, 2008 with 9 Comments

By Luke Thomas

October 8, 2008

San Francisco Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin echoed his support for Speaker Nancy Pelosi in her reelection bid yesterday and took aim at Cindy Sheehan’s grassroots campaign alleging Sheehan’s outsider status does not qualify her to represent San Francisco.

Sheehan, whose son, Casey, was killed in Iraq in April 2004, attracted international attention when she setup “Camp Casey” in 2005 outside President George Bush’ ranch in Crawford, Texas, demanding the president meet with her to explain the cause for which her son died.

Sheehan later set up domicile in San Francisco in December 2007 vowing to dethrone Pelosi for taking impeachment proceedings against Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney “off the table.”

“I respect Cindy Sheehan for what she has done for the peace movement and it has been profound and she’s played a remarkable role in American politics,” Peskin said, “but not to the detriment of the power that Northern California and liberals have in the United States Congress, and I don’t think we should trade that.”

“She’s the Ed Jew of San Francisco politics,” Peskin added, referring to the former District 4 supervisor who is alleged to have not lived in the district he once represented.

Peskin made the comments during a meeting of the Harvey Milk Democratic Club which had reconvened to reconsider its endorsement for the 8th congressional seat. The revote resulted in Nancy Pelosi maintaining the club’s endorsement by a 2-1 margin.

Though Peskin said he does not agree with Pelosi’s voting record on funding the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, he said “on balance, [Pelosi] represents the most fundamental values of San Francisco.”

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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for Nancy Pelosi’s Reelection Bid
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  1. Peskin rationalizes his support of Pelosi by pointing out how Power flows from the top. Only after Democrats gain firm control (beginning in the White House) can he imagine making stronger demands of the system.

    How wrong he is. And what a shame that he is not alone– too many people today buy that cynical viewpoint (which will ultimately, at best, reward them with only cheap tokens of achievement).

    I just read elsewhere on the internet a beautiful explanation of how positive change actually takes place.

    Carol Brouillet who, like Cindy Sheehan, is courageously running against a firmly entrenched incumbent House representative writes at her blog:

    “When people believe that power flows downward from those at the top of institutions towards the helpless at the bottom of the pyramid, tyranny rules.”

    She goes on to say:

    “Most people believe in this model. Under this model, change can be achieved only by appealing to elites, using persuasion. However, when people discover their own power and belief in democracy—that government should be “of, by, and for the people”—power flows from them through institutions to powerholders and public servants. True democratic power comes from the bottom, results in social progress, and powerholders and policies are changed to meet popular social demands.”

    Kudos to the brave persons at the Harvey Milk Club who risked their reputations to demand a reconsideration of the Club’s endorsement of Nancy Pelosi. They knew what is really in their best interest– and are thinking in terms of the future and not just of the past.

    Thanks to them– and not those who obsequiously kowtow to the so-called Powers That Be– Pelosi is on notice that LGBT persons will never accept being taken for granted by Democrats– as increasingly most every other social justice group has been in these many past years.

    One can be sure that once any interest group (labor, professional, racial, ethnic, or cultural) is considered to be of no threat to corporate interests– they will indeed be taken for granted and written-off from deserving any rewards beyond those that better profit those same corporate interests.

    Would that Harvey Milk were alive today!

    Would he promote such a worthless and exclusionary meme that describes Cindy Sheehan “is not being one of us”?

    I think it is Peskin who lacks a clear understanding of what San Francisco should be (and if it is not what I believe it to be, I am moving!)– he should understand that San Francisco is much more than a narcissistic geography of privilege and nostalgia.

    How many poor kids in Hunter’s Point or Ingleside can find their way to the Academy of Science as easily as they can to the malls on Market Street or as easily as the “smart social set” can to attend some squirmy invitation-only networking fund-raiser?

    San Francisco should be a living State of Mind… and Soul… a Vital Place to which persons from all around the world can come and look for inspiration.

    We deserve better leadership than what we have had.

    Nancy Pelosi has shown by her deeds that she is allied with persons opposed to the will and wishes of the people.

    By keeping Impeachment off the table– by not protesting our country’s use of torture– by complying with the Bush administration’s demands for money (billions? trillions?) to pursue its aims of criminal wars and crony plundering– and worse– by promoting illusions of her party’s and her own benevolence — Pelosi is herself a criminal accessory who “on balance” (Peskin’s words) does not deserve any support in any election.

    Cindy Sheehan is “one of us”– more so than any other American living today.

    The question persons like Peskin should ask themselves again is: Just who are We?

  2. … which is that he supports Pelosi for business reasons once he leaves office in couple of months.


  3. Campers,

    Give Aaron a break. You watch the clip? My man was drunk as a skunk. Sadly, that’s when people tell the truth.


  4. This was my reply to Peskin for his misguided comment about Sheehan’s residency:

    Your argument that Sheehan is not a resident of San Francisco is specious. At least one-quarter of the Board of Sups have been moving around the City, in spite of the rules governing District Elections, to run for office. If you check the voter rolls, open to the public, you will note that even some people you champion were not residents of the district when they ran for supervisor. How about one I know who lived in a PO Box when registering to run.


  5. (Here is the email that I sent to Supervisor Peskin that was never even acknowledged: for all his professed “respect” for me.)

    Dear Mr. Peskin,

    I am grateful that I have your respect, and I want you to know that I also respect you and Chris Daly’s mission to move the DCCC to the left. I always say that we are very fortunate to have some of the most progressive Democrats in America here in San Francisco.

    However, I do not “hail from Crawford.” I was born and raised in LA county and I moved to Vacaville in 1993 with my family and we lived there when my son Casey was killed. I lived in Berkeley after I was in Crawford (which was a temporary encampment) and I moved to San Francisco last year at great expense and effort on my part.

    Nancy Pelosi was born and hails from Maryland, as you know.

    Even though I don’t agree with you that Nancy reflects SF values more than I, it would be easy for you to research my platform and my bio at I urge you to do so if only to be better informed about my background. If you are going to speak of my background publicly, I think it would be awesome if you at least knew about it.

    Keep up the good work, you have my full support and win or lose in November, I am committed to this city and to spread SF values (which I believe are the best) throughout this country. We have already leased our office for another year and are excited about becoming even more a part of this community.

    Cindy Sheehan

  6. Peskin’s Comments

    Dear Editor,

    Cindy Sheehan is not the”Ed Jew of San Francisco politics” as foolishly claimed by Aaron Peskin but perhaps more like Hilary Clinton in consciously choosing to relocate where she could best be an effective political asset and contributor.

    And may I point out that Pelosi is an effective party operative but many times over-ineffective at listening to her constituency’s call for Bush/Cheney impeachment. Pelosi has chosen time and time again to act timidly for her party’s sake, refusing to confront the most destructive, deceptive administration probably in US history.

    Peskin’s remarks are revealing. What is important to most politicians? Party, not people. That’s exactly why I have been unable to donate even one dollar to the many DNC reps who have knocked on my door for the last few months.

    Go Obama and Cindy!

    Lisa Moresco
    Noe Vallley

  7. This just seals it for me about Peskin. What a shit!Who is this guy really? He calls Cindy Sheehan the Ed Jew of SF politics. First of all Ed Jew is the Ed Jew of SF politics, second this is a woman who lost her son to the war who took that pain and used it to stand up to this administration when few would do it. He says she’s from Crawford, TX. Ah, hello she only went there from her bay area home to try to get Bush deal with her and by extension all the other mothers, etc. who had lost their children. Peskin sucks….just another power hungry kiss ass. Screw you Peskin!

  8. I am writing to agree with Erika. As long as Cindy Sheehan is residing in the district she is running to represent then she has every right to run as a legitimate representative. Nancy Pelosi may reflect middle-America, Reagan Democrats but she is NOT representing her constituents. I am a Democrat, PROUD to publicly support Cindy Sheehan. Her Labor Platform is outstanding and her perspective on the war at home and abroad is right on target. When she compares the youth dying on our city streets with the loss of Casey and other soldiers, she is absolutely correct. This is all the same war.

  9. I guess I am not suprised that Aaron Peskin is so cluelessly privileged that he would support Pelosi. Peskin clearly has no understanding of the daily struggles of San Francisco residents, to whom having the Speaker of the House “represent” us is a cruel joke. Horrific crime devastates our neighborhoods and our transit system is in shambles. Peskin and Pelosi can’t even keep the streets clean! Young people are being shot blocks from where I am raising my family, and all Pelosi can do it give away $700 billion to super-rich on Wall Street.