Our Endorsements: November 3, 2020 Elections

The 13-person volunteer Board of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition weighed our mission, member input, the unique challenges of our current COVID crisis, our commitment to seeing our organization work towards anti-racist goals, and what that commitment means about our mission as we contemplated our endorsements this year. 

*Note from the board: We received feedback and realized our language on the SD11 race was overly circumspect and decontextualized. For clarity, we have updated the language below concerning our endorsement decision. We always welcome feedback from our members and community, who may learn more about our endorsement process here and reach our all-volunteer board of directors at board@sfbike.org.

Now and in the future we must go beyond our past standard of limiting our vision to bicycling and transportation issues and examine endorsements with a more intersectional and systemic lens. Issues like policing, school funding, housing, and taxation determine who is valued, nurtured, respected, and often who gets to succeed and literally survive here in San Francisco. Without acknowledging the interconnectivity of these issues, our advocacy will fail to contribute to the dynamic, safe, and just city that we desire.  

For information about the how white supremacy plays a role in our community, please watch our recent panel discussion: Bike Lanes, Gentrification, and Anti-Blackness 

For the 2020 San Francisco elections on November 3, our official endorsements are:

  • San Francisco Board of Supervisors, District 1: No endorsement
  • San Francisco Board of Supervisors, District 3: Danny Sauter
  • San Francisco Board of Supervisors, District 5: No endorsement
  • San Francisco Board of Supervisors, District 7: #1 Myrna Melgar, #2 Vilaska Nguyen
  • San Francisco Board of Supervisors, District 9: Hillary Ronen
  • San Francisco Board of Supervisors, District 11: John Avalos
  • BART Board of Directors, District 7: Lateefah Simon
  • BART Board of Directors, District 9: No endorsement
  • California State Assembly, District 17: David Chiu
  • California State Assembly, District 19: Phil Ting
  • California State Senate, District 11: No endorsement
  • Yes on State Proposition 15
  • Yes on State Proposition 16
  • Yes on State Proposition 18
  • No on State Proposition 22
  • Yes on Regional Measure RR
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition A
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition B
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition C
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition D
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition E
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition F
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition G
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition H
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition I
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition J
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition K
  • Yes on San Francisco City Proposition L

Board of Supervisors, District 1: While we are encouraged by the questionnaire responses, and the support for car-free JFK, no candidate clearly distinguished themselves on transportation issues. Thus, the Board makes no endorsement. 

Board of Supervisors, District 3: Danny Sauter is an active SF Bicycle Coalition member and a highly motivated advocate for much needed cyclist and pedestrian safety improvements. We are proud to support Danny, who has earned the support of many of our members and who we believe will prioritize safer streets if elected. 

Board of Supervisors, District 5: Much like in the November 2019 election, we heard a significant number of voices from our members and community supporting both Vallie Brown and Dean Preston. Both of them have demonstrated credentials on bike issues, and would no doubt continue to be strong advocates if elected. Our member polling was virtually a tie. With faith in both candidates to support bike causes, and no consensus among our members, our Board has no endorsement for this race. 

Board of Supervisors, District 7: In a tight race without a clear front-runner, we endorse a ranked first choice of Myrna Melgar, and second choice of Vilaska Nguyen. Both of these progressive candidates had great responses to our questionnaires. Melgar has a slight edge due to her transportation background. 

Board of Supervisors, District 9: Hillary Ronen has been supportive of protected bike lanes on Valencia and the expansion of bike share. We are proud to endorse her.

Board of Supervisors, District 11: John Avalos has been a champion for cycling in this City. He has been endorsed repeatedly by the SF Bicycle Coalition in the past. Ahsha Safaí has consistently failed to meet the necessary standard for our endorsement and as Supervisor has blocked SF Bicycle Coalition priority projects in District 11. Thus, while we repudiate John Avalos’s offensive exchanges with other politicians, we endorse this long-time advocate for bicycling within our City with the understanding that he has begun to and can continue to mend fences with his political colleagues.

BART Board of Directors, District 7: We proudly endorse Lateefah Simon once again, and look forward to a continuation of the progress that she has already begun as a BART Board Director. 

BART Board of Directors, District 9: In this race we are happy to see an activist from our own ranks; Patrick Mortiere is a long-time member, volunteer and supporter of our organization. We also have a strong advocate in Bevan Dufty. Given our desire to support both of these candidates in a winner-take-all race, we felt we could not endorse.

California State Assembly, District 17: David Chiu, who has been a consistent advocate for biking and transportation improvements and has continued that work at the state level, earns our endorsement.

California State Assembly, District 19: A past Golden Wheel awardee, Phil Ting continues to demonstrate his commitment to biking and walking in Sacramento, so we endorse him. 

California State Senate, District 11Scott Wiener is a proven advocate for transportation issues and continues to demonstrate that as our State Senator. However,  many members of our community had reservations regarding his previous ties to policing which contradict the broader intersectional goal of this organization to support the thoughtful defunding of police and prevent over-policing communities of color. We are excited by Jackie Fielder’s entrance into politics, but have concerns about her level of experience for this particular office. In response to community feedback, we will add, as with all endorsements, this was a board decision.  The SD11 race was discussed at length at each endorsement meeting. When it finally came to be voted on by the full board the split of votes represented what we were seeing and hearing from membership across the spectrum. We decided that the best course of action to represent our membership was to remain neutral in this race. Please know that we recognize and are grateful to the candidates for their efforts towards furthering the bicycle as a means of everyday transportation and our values to support transportation justice. Thus, we make no endorsement in this race.

Yes on State Proposition 18 — Primary Voting for 17-Year-Olds, Yes on San Francisco City Proposition C — Removing Citizenship Requirements for Members of City Bodies, and Yes on San Francisco City Proposition G — Youth Voting in Local Elections: Increased voting rights for youth and the removal of citizenship requirements for City boards, commissions, and advisory bodies have a direct result in producing an electorate that we believe are more favorably inclined to our issues and values. 

Yes on State Proposition 15 — Schools and Communities First: Repealing part of the original Prop 13 from 1978 will help California fund our schools and local government by requiring corporate property owners to pay their fair share in property taxes. 

Yes on State Proposition 16 — Opportunity for All: Repealing Prop 209 from 1996 to effectively reauthorize affirmative action in our state would impact far more than just education and job hirings, it also would provide more flexibility for city government to add relevant stipulations to their contracts. We believe this is an important issue of fairness and equity. 

No on State Proposition 22 — Uber/Lyft Driver Classification Measure: Allowing app-based transportation and delivery drivers to be classified as independent contractors, and exempting those companies from AB 5 (2019), is an unacceptable relaxation of the increased regulations on transportation network companies like Uber and Lyft. 

Yes on Regional Measure RR — Caltrain Sales Tax: Caltrain needs funding. 

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition A — Homelessness, Parks, and Streets Bond: Despite concern regarding the issue of conservatorship, we felt the added funding for parks, streets, and sidewalks were worth an endorsement.

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition B — Public Works:  The restructuring of the Public Works Department is needed, particularly given the recent issues of corruption. 

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition D — Sheriff Oversight & Yes on E —Police Staffing: Prop D creates an oversight mechanism for non-criminal Sheriff Department misconduct within our county jails, City Hall, courts, and SF General. Having such an oversight is necessary to begin changing the culture of policing as we must stop allowing behavior to accelerate to the level of criminality we so frequently see. Prop E allows for staffing and budget to be tied to actual need rather than a previously mandated level. Both of these propositions earn our endorsement as we recognize that communities of color are too often targeted, over-policed, and receive abusive treatment by our institutions. Supporting these measures are part of our commitment to our antiracist work. 

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition F — Business Tax Overhaul:  It is clear that modifications need to be made in order to fulfill the expectations from the transition from payroll to gross receipts tax. This adjustment to the city’s gross tax receipts led to funding for November 2018’s proposition C – Our City, Our Home initiative, which we endorsed. This is a continuation of that support. 

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition H — Save Our Small Businesses Initiative: During this difficult financial time, we feel it is important to support our small business allies by endorsing changes to City processes.

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition I — Real Estate Transfer Tax and Yes on K — Affordable Housing Authorization: As money generated from Prop I is intended to be earmarked for rent relief and a social housing fund, both of these propositions will increase the ability of San Francisco residents to continue to remain in their homes. We recognize the intrinsic link between affordable housing and transportation infrastructure, and thus felt it was important to endorse both measures.

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition J — Parcel Tax for SFUSD: School funding directly impacts the next generation and the many programs we have to support and encourage youth to use bicycling as an everyday form of transportation. 

Yes on San Francisco City Proposition L — Executive Pay Ratio Tax: This is an opportunity to speak to the disparate income within our City and increase the City’s General Fund.

Events

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November 1, 2020

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