Fear and loathing in the 43rd State Assembly District

So this contest for the 43rd State Assembly District here in our neck of Los Angeles has gotten so twisted that now the mailers for the two liberal Democrats–we get a couple each everyday–are now accusing the other of being Republican. I opened up the mail box today and their campaign mailings spilled out, most of them downright nasty. The hit piece by the PAC supporting Democrat Laura Friedman against Democrat Ardy Kassakhian is quite subtle–pictures of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Mitch McConnell and John Boehner and the caption “Ardy Kassakhian’s Republican Party”, on an American flag backdrop. The hit piece on Democrat Laura Friedman by the PAC supporting Ardy Kassakhian says “The Right Wing Problem! Right-wing Billionaires are spending millions of dollars to elect Laura Friedman….”

There have been dozens of these mailings, some positive, mostly negative, and virtually all are paid for by the California Charter School Association (for Friedman) or the California Teachers Association (for Kassakhian). Friedman’s campaign got a head start with the nastiness, I remember, and it took a week or so before the Kassakhian campaign hit back. Since then both sides PAC’s have been going at it with abandon and seemingly limitless funds, and the election is still a week off. This has gone on for several election cycles now, a brutal charter school vs public education war in Silver Lake, where most people don’t even have children.

People have come knocking on our door as well, very nice people, I always tell them we are voting for whoever it is they are working for and they hand me a button and leave. I have yet to wear the buttons, though, they clash with my wardrobe and sense of self-worth.

The robocalls I just hang up on. In fact I just hung up on one now.

I will not like their Facebook pages.

Nothing I can do about the snail mail, though. I pry the obnoxiously oversized pieces from our mailbox and put them right in the recycle bin. More show up the next day. And since I voted by mail a week ago, every one of these items sent to our address is just a waste of a perfectly good tree. They will have no impact on the race one way or the other as far as this household is concerned. Of course, as Kassakhian and Friedman will emerge from next week’s primary as the two leading contenders for the seat, we get to go through the same thing all over again come the fall. Same two candidates, same two PACS, same nasty smear campaigns by the California Charter School Association and California Teachers Association. And while this torrent of postal abuse is unlikely to affect my vote at all,  it might leave me pretty sick of teachers by November.

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