Subscribe

PD Editorial: Press Democrat special election recommendations

Editorials represent the views of The Press Democrat editorial board and The Press Democrat as an institution. The editorial board and the newsroom operate separately and independently of one another.

Campaign season is winding down here in Sonoma County. Postal carriers have been delivering some vicious attacks that ought to go straight in the trash bin. They are also are picking up ballots. If you haven’t sent yours yet, you still can. You also can drop ballots off at secure collection boxes and voting centers. Make your voice heard. For a list, go to sonomacounty.ca.gov/CRA/registrar-of-voters/elections/locations

Here are our recommendations in Tuesday’s election

Sonoma County

Recall: District Attorney Jill Ravitch — No

If voters remove District Attorney Jill Ravitch from office, it will send a dangerous message to other public officials: Holding wealthy people accountable can end your career. The path to the recall election begins with the Tubbs fire in 2017, when employees fled two Santa Rosa assisted-living complexes owned by Bill Gallaher’s Oakmont Senior Living. In the aftermath, the company settled a lawsuit filed by the district attorney and the state Justice Department, paying $500,000 and agreeing to hire an independent monitor to ensure compliance with planning and training requirements to protect residents. After the settlement, and after Ravitch announced plans to retire next year, Gallaher launched a recall campaign. He has spent more than $1.7 million of his own money on the recall. There are no other donors. Ravitch isn’t without critics, but many of them see the recall as nothing more than a vindictive act by someone she held accountable, and they are sticking with her. You should too.

To read The Press Democrat’s editorial, click here

Rohnert Park

Measure D: Fireworks — Yes

Fireworks are fun, they’re an Independence Day tradition, and selling them is an easy way for philanthropic groups to raise money. They’re also a dangerous nuisance, sparking fires and sending people to the emergency room with burns and other injuries. Are fireworks worth the risk? The Rohnert Park City Council said no. In April, the council voted to outlaw personal fireworks, leaving Cloverdale as the only local city allowing fireworks. TNT, a fireworks manufacturer, bankrolled a petition campaign that postponed enforcement of the law pending next Tuesday’s special election. A “yes” vote upholds the law. Aside from TNT, opposition comes from about a dozen nonprofit groups that raise money through fireworks sales. Nonprofit groups elsewhere found new ways to raise money when fireworks were outlawed. In Rohnert Park, they won’t have to hunt. The council is prepared to make up for lost sales and also endorsed holding a community fireworks show.

To read The Press Democrat’s editorial, click here

California

Recall: Gov. Gavin Newsom — No

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s record isn’t perfect, but he’s done nothing to justify removing him from office a year early. Indeed, Newsom has done a better job of managing the coronavirus pandemic than many of his fellow governors. On key health metrics including cases per capita, deaths per capita and people vaccinated, California ranks above almost every other large state. But this public health crisis has a political dimension. Many of Newsom’s fiercest critics opposed the stay-at-home orders, mask mandates and social distancing requirements that have limited the spread of COVID-19. They allied with state and national Republican leaders to target the Democratic governor for recall. Recalls should be reserved for serious misconduct or gross incompetence, not policy disagreements and partisan differences.

To read The Press Democrat’s editorial, click here

You can send letters to the editor to letters@pressdemocrat.com.

Editorials represent the views of The Press Democrat editorial board and The Press Democrat as an institution. The editorial board and the newsroom operate separately and independently of one another.

UPDATED: Please read and follow our commenting policy:

  • This is a family newspaper, please use a kind and respectful tone.
  • No profanity, hate speech or personal attacks. No off-topic remarks.
  • No disinformation about current events.
  • We will remove any comments — or commenters — that do not follow this commenting policy.
Send a letter to the editor

Our Network

The Press Democrat
Sonoma Index-Tribune
Petaluma Argus Courier
North Bay Business Journal
Sonoma Magazine
Bite Club Eats
La Prensa Sonoma
Sonoma County Gazette